12 LGBTQ+ Young Adult Books You Must Read in 2020
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🌈 Happy Pride Month, dear readers! 🌈
This year, Pride festivities are quite different, but that doesn't mean they need to be boring. Maybe we will spend more time at home, which means we will have extra time to read those fantastic books written by queer authors. To celebrate, I've put together my 12 favorite LGBTQ-Young-Adult books!
Some of these books were released this year, while others are Young Adult classics, and they had impacted my life beautifully.
What are your favorite LGBTQ YA books? Let me know in the comments!
1. Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo
Written in verse, Clap When You Land tells the story of two girls whose tragic circumstances force them to forge a bond.
Camino Rios lives in the Dominican Republic and wants to go to Columbia University in New York City where her father works. Yahaira Rios, meanwhile, hasn't spoken with her father after she found out he has another family in the Dominican Republic. But when their father dies in an airplane crash, the half-sisters, separated by distance and Papi’s secrets, are forced to face a new reality in which their father is dead and their lives are forever altered.
And then, when it seems like they’ve lost everything of their father, they learn of each other.
Buy Clap When You Land here!
2. I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver
Ben comes out to their parents as non-binary, but their reaction is not what Ben expected. Ben is forced to move in with Hannah, their sister, and her husband, Thomas. But life gets complicated for Ben when they realize there are many things they need to work out, mainly how to deal with their anxiety and heal the wounds from their past.
When Ben starts in a new school, he meets Nathan, a sweet student who decides to help Ben in this new beginning. But the friendship between them grows fast, and their feelings for one another bloom. Ben will discover that there are people in their life who are willing to support him and finally begins to feel happy.
Buy I Wish You All the Best here!
3. The Music of What Happens by Bill Konigsberg
Jordan and his mother are having a hard time. He tries to help her with the food truck that was run by his father, but when he realizes it is an impossible task for her, he tries to do it alone. Then Max, one of his school mates, sees Jordan's mom struggling in the food truck, and he volunteers as an employee.
Max has some dark secrets of his own. After an encounter with an older kid at a college party, things got complicated for him. Something that he tries to ignore.
Both kids will have to face their biggest fears that summer and take risks to get what they want the most.
Buy The Music of What Happens here!
4. Felix Ever After by Kacen Callender
Seventeen-year-old Felix Love has never been in love. But he desperately wants to know how it feels. Even when he is proud of his identity, he fears to be black, queer, and transgender, because this could make it harder to find that “someone.”
When an anonymous student starts sending him transphobic messages and posting photos at the school gallery before he transitioned, Felix decides to revenge. But things get complicated when he finds out his catfish scenario landing him in a quasi-love triangle.
As Felix navigates self-doubt and anxiety episodes, he begins a journey of questioning and self-discovery that helps him to realize the most important thing is how he feels about himself.
Buy Felix Ever After here!
5. Dear Twin by Addie Tsai
After the vanishing of her twin sister Lola, Poppy has a lot to handle. She wants to go to college and have a normal life, but things at home are complicated. Poppy's father has been depressed, so she feels she needs to convince Lola to come home. Poppy decides to send her eighteen letters; one for each year of their lives.
On the other hand, Poppy has a beautiful relationship with her girlfriend, Juniper, apparently the one person who understands her. Poppy navigates the complexities of queer romance and childhood trauma. But soon she will realize that she needs to help herself first, and procure her freedom, which won't be easy.
Buy Dear Twin here!
6. More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera
Sixteen-year-old Aaron Soto finds his dad lying in the bathtub dead. After this traumatic event, it seems like he can't find happiness anywhere. His girlfriend Genevieve and his mother, try to support him after the family tragedy. But it's until he meets Thomas, a new guy in the neighborhood, when Aaron starts to remember what happiness feels like.
As their friendship grows, Aaron can't deny what he feels for this new friend, so he decides to open up about those feelings. As he navigates Bronx neighborhood, his family, Aaron considers the Leteo Institute procedure as an option, which is a memory-altering procedure that will straighten him out, even if it means forgetting who he truly is.
Buy More Happy Than Not here!
Find the Deluxe Edition here! (It will be released on September 8, 2020).
7. Heartstopper by Alice Oseman
In this graphic novel, we follow the lives of Charlie Spring and Nick Nelson. Charlie is an openly-gay popular kid. Last year was tough for him after he was bullied for being gay. Nick is a kind rugby player who apparently is straight. He's heard about Charlie and his terrible last year's experience.
They meet at a British All-boys Grammar School. Soon their friendship grows, and the two spend more time together on campus and outside school. Charlie falls hard for Nick, but he thinks he doesn't have a chance. On the other hand, Nick realizes that he loves spending time with Charlie too, and starts to wonder what he really feels for him.
Buy Heartstopper here!
8. Julie Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera
Juliet Milagros is leaving the Bronx and headed to Portland, Oregon for her summer internship. The night before she leaves, Juliet comes out as a lesbian with her Puerto Rican family. With her mother's disapproval, Juliet is not sure if she will ever speak to her again. However, Juliet feels this internship with her favorite feminist writer could help her to find the answers she needs. Thing is this writer, who is white, comes from a different culture.
As Juliet navigates queer brown community and intense explorations of race and identity that summer, she learns that the most important thing is how she feels about herself. And then, when it seems like they’ve lost everything of their father, they learn of each other.
Buy Juliet Takes a Breath here!
9. The Truth about Keeping Secrets by Savannah Brown
Junior-high-school girl, Sydney, is emotionally abused after the death of her father. He used to be the only psychiatrist in town, and she believes the crash was not an accident. On the day of his funeral, she starts to receive threatening text messages that imply her dad was murdered.
To deal with her grief and fear, she finds comfort in her new friend June Copeland, the school’s homecoming queen. Sydney begins to fall in love with her, but she soon discovers that people sometimes hide secrets and that nobody is perfect.
Buy The Truth about Keeping Secrets here!
10. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Set in El Paso, Texas, this story follows the lives of two fifteen-year-old teens, who apparently don't have anything in common, except for the fact they both are Mexican-American.
Ari Mendoza suffers from self-doubt. With a brother in prison who his parents never talk about, and a father dealing with his ghosts of the Vietnam war, Ari hasn't had an easy life. Dante Quintana, meanwhile, is self-assured. He was an extraordinary family who loves him and accepts him.
One day, they meet at the town's swimming pool. Dante offers to teach Ari how to swim. They start to spend time together, and their friendship slowly grows.
11. We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
When Marin leaves California, no one knows anything about her, not even her best friend Mabel. Marin lost her grandfather and she is forced to study in a New York college. But there’s something else that she is hiding.
Mabel decides to visit her best friend after months she left, and Marin is confused about that secret and how she feels about it, especially because she knows she can’t run away from her past. This time she will need to face loneliness and pain, secrets and fear.
Buy We Are Okay here!
12. Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan
Paul is a sophomore student who attends a very unusual but wonderful high school: cheerleaders ride Harleys, the homecoming queen is a football player named Daryl (who now is a drag queen), and the gay kids help the straight ones learn how to dance.
When Paul meets Noah, he falls for him, but he messes it up. Between an ex-boyfriend who might not be going away anytime soon and his best friends' problems, Paul knows he needs being there for the people he cares and, at the same time, to work on recovering the guy he loves.
Buy Boy Meets Boy here!
🌈 For more book LGBTQ+ book titles, visit https://amzn.to/37G3tMF 🌈