Queer characters and stories are underrepresented in YA fiction. Though many YA novels featuring LGBTQ characters and themes are award-winning, there are not enough being published, which makes it all the more important to recognize those books that are actually hitting shelves.
I’ve always been interested in yound adult literature with LGBTQ themes or characters. Here’s a look at the 2014 releases in YA that feature lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer characters that I’ve been able to find so far.
Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out by Susan Kiklan
This is nonfiction—interviews and portraits of six transgender or gender-neutral teens, due out in February.
Shadowplay by Laura Lam
This is the follow up to last year’s Pantomine, available now.
Changers, Book One: Drew by T. Cooper and Allison Glock
This is a paranormal book in which certain members of the population change genders each year. It got a good review from Kirkus and sort of reminds me of the premise of Every Day by David Levithan. It will be released in February.
Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith
This is a crazy sci-fi with a bisexual main character—also about “survival, sex, and the complex realities of the human condition.”
Moon at Nine by Deborah Ellis
It’s clear from the description this one has LGTBQ themes. Forbidden lesbian love in Iran in the 1980s. It is a possible read-alike for If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan. It’s from a small press and I haven’t seen reviews. It’s due out in April.
The Summer I Wasn’t Me by Jessica Verdi
This basically sounds like the plot of the movie But I’m a Cheerleader. Hopefully it’s as funny. The Summer I Wasn’t Me is due out in April.
Far From You by Tess Sharpe
From what I can tell (I’m just starting it) this is mostly a murder mystery, but there is an undercurrent of same-sex attraction between the main character and her best friend.. Far From You is due out in April.
Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour
This one is about lesbians in the film world, and Nina has said she intended to explore a relationship between young women rather than coming out and accepting one’s sexual identity. Everything Leads to You will be released this May.
One Man Guy by Michael Barakiva
This is a gay teen romance from an Israeli/Armenian author due out in May.
City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare
I can’t stand Cassandra Clare’s writing, but more power to her for having a gay couple in her story. The latest installment in The Mortal Instruments series is due out in May.
Lies My Girlfriend Told Me by Julie Anne Peters
Julie Anne Peters has been writing lesbian YA fiction for years. This one has a dash of murder mystery and betrayal, and is due out in June.
Fan Art by Sarah Tregay
Childhood friendship turned gay romance in art class, due out in June.
Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley
This is a historical lesbian romance due out this fall.
I’m committed to spreading the word about LGBTQ fiction, particularly for young adults. These are the titles I’ve come across in my research, but I hope there are more! Do you know of any additional 2014 releases in young adult literature that feature LGBTQ characters or themes? Please let me know in the comments!
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26 thoughts on “2014 New Releases: LGBTQ Young Adult Literature”
HI! Great list! My latest YA lesbian novel is out, too. It’s called Driving Lessons (Bold Strokes Books, 2014) and is a sequel to the first book in the series, The You Know Who Girls. Check out my website for more info :) http://www.annameekee.com
“Afterlife with Archie” by Aguirre-Sacasa, for those graphic novel readers. Jughead and Sabrina inadvertently start a zombie apocalypse which has two best friends hiding their true feelings for each other from everyone they know.
Also, the memoir “Some Assembly Required” by Andrews. He tells his story from a young age growing up in a female body through his teenage years, transitioning to male.
Two that I’ve just got in but haven’t read yet, “Gracefully Greyson” by Polonsky is a Middle School fiction book on a transgender girl and “”Tell me Again how a Crush Should Feel” by Farizan is about a girl who begins to have feelings for another girl.
Great list. Two Boys Kissing should be on it too. :)
Two Boys Kissing was released in 2013.
Reblogged this on The YA Literature Bookshelf.
Great list, Molly! Here are a few more:
What We Hide, Marthe Jocelyn
Dirty London, Kelley York
An Unstill Life, Kate Larkindale
Great list! Another excellent resource for adding more books for me to read this year. I read Shadowplay already and it is my top favourite book for the year so far.
I’m so excited to check out the series!
Add me to the list of people enthusiastically waiting for Otherbound!
It does look great!
Reblogged this on .
Don’t forget Chorus by Emma Trevyane, Guardian by Alex London, the sequel to Dos Santos’ The Culling, Jenna Black’s Resistance…
Thanks! Commenter above mentioned the sequels, but I am not familiar with Black…*runs off to look it up*
Fantastic fantastic list. I actually just requested one of these books yesterday. Thanks for putting this together!
Reblogged this on Booktoss and commented:
Yes to all of these — especially the ones I’ve actually read. Nice to see some lesbian characters.
I’m trying to keep track of this too! Thanks for making this list. Here’s some to add to it:
GUARDIAN by Alex London
THE SOWING by Steven dos Santos
FIVE SIX SEVEN NATE by Tim Federle (though that’s MG)
DARK METROPOLIS by Jaclyn Dolamore
SECRET by Brigid Kemmerer
and my own, OTHERBOUND
AFAIK all these have queer protagonists.
Thanks! I didn’t go back and methodically look at sequels to last year’s releases. I had Dark Metropolis marked as possible LGBT, but the synopsis didn’t mention it and I couldn’t remember/find why I had included it. Looking forward to Otherbound!
I wasn’t sure about Dark Metropolis either, but Malinda Lo confirmed it for me, and the I saw the author mention that one of the three PoV characters was definitely queer, so that’s great. I’m really looking forward to it.
And thanks! Hope you’ll dig it! :D
Thanks for sharing, Molly! I want to read a lot more LGBTQ books this year. The follow up to Pantomine sounds promising and EVERYTHING LEADS TO YOU sounds really good too.
This is a great list! I hope to read some of these. :D
One more that I’ve already read is Sisters’ Fate by Jessica Spotswood. There is a young lesbian couple in it. It comes out in August.
Thanks for letting everyone know about Sisters’ Fate!
Great list! So excited for the ones I haven’t yet read, and loved FAR FROM YOU and THE SUMMER I WASN’T ME, which I have! Another great one is THE FOURTH WISH by Lindsay Ribar, and I’m super excited for OTHERBOUND by Corinne Duyvis, which also definitely has LGBTQ characters.
Thanks for adding to the list!