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Library

Read the Rainbow

The Library's "Read the Rainbow" book display invites readers to explore books featuring LGBTQ+ characters. We researched multiple sources to find a diverse collection of highly recommended books across many genres, lengths, reading levels, and formats. One of our favorite tools for locating LGBTQ+ books is the website Queer Books for Teens, which includes a searchable database of books and detailed descriptions. Grier maintains a list of LGBTQ+ titles in a Kaleidescope Destiny Collection.


Take a look at some of the titles featured in our 2019 display:


Afterworlds
by Scott Westerfeld
Genre: Science Fiction
Call #: FIC WES
Publisher’s Description: 
Believing is dangerous…Darcy Patel is afraid to believe all the hype. But it’s really happening – her teen novel is getting published. Instead of heading to college, she’s living in New York City, where she’s welcomed into the dazzling world of YA publishing. That means book tours, parties with her favorite authors, and finding a place to live that won’t leave her penniless. It means sleepless nights rewriting her first draft and struggling to find the perfect ending… all while dealing with the intoxicating, terrifying experience of falling in love – with another writer.
 
Told in alternating chapters is Darcy’s novel, the thrilling story of Lizzie, who wills her way into the afterworld to survive a deadly terrorist attack. With survival comes the responsibility to guide the restless spirits that walk our world, including one ghost with whom she shares a surprising personal connection. But Lizzie’s not alone in her new calling – she has counsel from a fellow spirit guide, a very desirable one, who is torn between wanting Lizzie and warning her that…believing is dangerous.
 
In a brilliant high-wire act of weaving two epic narratives – and two unforgettable heroines – into one novel, Scott Westerfeld’s latest work is a triumph of storytelling.
 
 
Am I Blue? Coming Out from the Silence
edited by Marion Dane Bauer
Genre: Short stories
Call #: FIC BAU
 
 
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
by Benjamin Alire Saenz
Genre: Contemporary/Historical (set in the 1980s)
Call #: FIC SAE
Publisher’s Description: 
Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn the most important truths about themselves and the kind of people they want to be.
 
 
 
As I Descended
by Robin Talley
Genre: Paranormal, Thriller
Call #: FIC TAL
 Publisher’s Description: 
’Something wicked this way comes.’ Maria Lyon and Lily Boiten are their school’s ultimate power couple—even if no one knows it but them.
Only one thing stands between them and their perfect future: campus superstar Delilah Dufrey. Golden child Delilah is a legend at the exclusive Acheron Academy, and the presumptive winner of the distinguished Cawdor Kingsley Prize. She runs the school, and if she chose, she could blow up Maria and Lily’s whole world with a pointed look, or a carefully placed word. But what Delilah doesn’t know is that Lily and Maria are willing to do anything—absolutely anything—to make their dreams come true. And the first step is unseating Delilah for the Kingsley Prize. The full scholarship, awarded to Maria, will lock in her attendance at Stanford―and four more years in a shared dorm room with Lily. Maria and Lily will stop at nothing to ensure their victory—including harnessing the dark power long rumored to be present on the former plantation that houses their school. But when feuds turn to fatalities, and madness begins to blur the distinction between what’s real and what is imagined, the girls must decide where they draw the line.
 
 
Ask the Passengers
by A.S. King
Genre: Contemporary
Call # FIC KIN
Publisher’s Description: 
Astrid Jones desperately wants to confide in someone, but her mother’s pushiness and her father’s lack of interest tell her they’re the last people she can trust. Instead, Astrid spends hours lying on the backyard picnic table watching airplanes fly overhead. She doesn’t know the passengers inside, but they’re the only people who won’t judge her when she asks them her most personal questions–like what it means that she’s falling in love with a girl.
 
As her secret relationship becomes more intense and her friends demand answers, Astrid has nowhere left to turn. She can’t share the truth with anyone except the people at thirty thousand feet, and they don’t even know she’s there. But little does Astrid know just how much even the tiniest connection will affect these strangers’ lives–and her own–for the better.
In this truly original portrayal of a girl struggling to break free of society’s definitions, Printz Honor author A.S. King asks readers to question everything–and offers hope to those who will never stop seeking real love. 
 
 
Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
Genre: Fantasy, Romance
Call #: FIC ROW
Publisher’s Description: 
A #1 New York Times-bestseller. Simon Snow is the worst Chosen One who’s ever been chosen. That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right. Half the time, Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he starts something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around, wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here — it’s their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up. Carry On – The Rise and Fall of Simon Snow is a ghost story, a love story and a mystery. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story – but far, far more monsters.
 
 
Echo After Echo
by Amy Rose Capetta
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery/Thriller
Call #: FIC CAP
Publisher’s Description
Debuting on the New York stage, Zara is unprepared—for Eli, the girl who makes the world glow; for Leopold, the director who wants perfection; and for death in the theater. Zara Evans has come to the Aurelia Theater, home to the visionary director Leopold Henneman, to play her dream role in Echo and Ariston, the Greek tragedy that taught her everything she knows about love. When the director asks Zara to promise that she will have no outside commitments, no distractions, it’s easy to say yes. But it’s hard not to be distracted when there’s a death at the theater—and then another—especially when Zara doesn’t know if they’re accidents, or murder, or a curse that always comes in threes. It’s hard not to be distracted when assistant lighting director Eli Vasquez, a girl made of tattoos and abrupt laughs and every form of light, looks at Zara. It’s hard not to fall in love. In heart-achingly beautiful prose, Amy Rose Capetta has spun a mystery and a love story into an impossible, inevitable whole—and cast lantern light on two girls, finding each other on a stage set for tragedy.
 
 
 
Fans of the Impossible
by Kate Scelsa
Genre: Contemporary
Call # : FIC SCE
 Publisher’s Description
Mira is starting over at Saint Francis Prep. She promised her parents she would at least try to pretend that she could act like a functioning human this time, not a girl who can’t get out of bed for days on end, who only feels awake when she’s with Sebby. Jeremy is the painfully shy art nerd at Saint Francis who’s been in self-imposed isolation after an incident that ruined his last year of school. When he sees Sebby for the first time across the school lawn, it’s as if he’s been expecting this blond, lanky boy with mischief glinting in his eye. Sebby, Mira’s gay best friend, is a boy who seems to carry sunlight around with him. Even as life in his foster home starts to take its toll, Sebby and Mira together craft a world of magic rituals and impromptu road trips, designed to fix the broken parts of their lives. As Jeremy finds himself drawn into Sebby and Mira’s world, he begins to understand the secrets that they hide in order to protect themselves, to keep each other safe from those who don’t understand their quest to live for the impossible.
 
 
 
Kissing Kate by Lauren Myracle
Genre: Contemporary
Call #: FIC MYR
 Publisher’s Description:
Kate was Lissa’s best friend. They’ve shared everything for four years. Then one night at a drunken party, Kate leaned in to kiss Lissa, and Lissa kissed her back. And now Kate is pretending Lissa doesn’t exist. Confused and alone, Lissa’s left questioning everything she thought she knew about herself, and about life. But with the help of a free-spirit new friend, Lissa’s beginning to find the strength to realize that sometimes falling in love with the wrong person is the only way to find your footing.
 
 
Learning Seventeen
by Brooke Carter
Genre: Contemporary, Hi/Lo
Call #: FIC CAR
 
 
 
M of F?
by Lisa Papdemetriou
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Call #: FIC PAP
 
 
None of the Above
by I.W. Gregorio
Genre: Contemporary
Call #: FIC GRE
 
 
Not the Only One: Lesbian and Gay Fiction for Teens edited
by Jane Summer
Genre: Short stories
Call #: FIC NOT
 

On a Sunbeam
by Tillie Walden     
                                       
Genre: Science Fiction, Graphic Novel
Call #: GF WAL 
Publisher’s Description:
Throughout the deepest reaches of space, a crew rebuilds beautiful and broken-down structures, painstakingly putting the past together. As Mia, the newest member, gets to kn ow her team, the story flashes back to her pivotal year in boarding school, where she fell in love with a mysterious new student. When Mia grows close to her new friends, she reveals her true purpose for joining their ship—to track down her long-lost love.
 
 
The Hammer of Thor (Book #2 Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard)
by Rick Riordan
Genre: Fantasy
Call #: FIC RIO
 Publisher’s Description:
Thor’s hammer is missing again. The thunder god has a disturbing habit of misplacing his weapon–the mightiest force in the Nine Worlds. But this time the hammer isn’t just lost. It has fallen into enemy hands. If Magnus Chase and his friends can’t retrieve the hammer quickly, the mortal worlds will be defenseless against an onslaught of giants. Ragnarok will begin. The Nine Worlds will burn. Unfortunately, the only person who can broker a deal for the hammer’s return is the gods’ worst enemy, Loki–and the price he wants is very high.
 
 

The Prince and the Dressmaker
by Jen Wang
Genre: Historical, Graphic Novel
Call #: GF WAN
 Publisher’s Description:
Paris, at the dawn of the modern age:
Prince Sebastian is looking for a bride―or rather, his parents are looking for one for him. Sebastian is too busy hiding his secret life from everyone. At night he puts on daring dresses and takes Paris by storm as the fabulous Lady Crystallia―the hottest fashion icon in the world capital of fashion! Sebastian’s secret weapon (and best friend) is the brilliant dressmaker Frances―one of only two people who know the truth: sometimes this boy wears dresses. But Frances dreams of greatness, and being someone’s secret weapon means being a secret. Forever. How long can Frances defer her dreams to protect a friend?
 
 
 Two Boys Kissing
by David Levithan
Genre: Contemporary
Call #: FIC LEV
Publisher’s Description:
New York Times  bestselling author David Levithan tells the based-on-true-events story of Harry and Craig, two 17-year-olds who are about to take part in a 32-hour marathon of kissing to set a new Guinness World Record—all of which is narrated by a Greek Chorus of the generation of gay men lost to AIDS. While the two increasingly dehydrated and sleep-deprived boys are locking lips, they become a focal point in the lives of other teen boys dealing with languishing long-term relationships, coming out, navigating gender identity, and falling deeper into the digital rabbit hole of gay hookup sites—all while the kissing former couple tries to figure out their own feelings for each other.


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