|To celebrate LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) month we have put together a list of recommended titles for teen readers:
Read me like a book by Liz Kessler
Ashleigh Walker is in love. You know the feeling – that intense, heart-racing, all-consuming emotion that can only come with first love. It’s enough to stop her worrying about bad grades at college. Enough to distract her from her parents’ marriage troubles. There’s just one thing bothering her. Shouldn’t it be her boyfriend, Dylan, who makes her feel this way – not Miss Murray, her English teacher?
Beyond magenta : transgender teens speak out by Susan Kuklin
Author and photographer Susan Kuklin met and interviewed six transgender or gender-neutral young adults and used her considerable skills to represent them thoughtfully and respectfully before, during, and after their personal acknowledgment of gender identity. Portraits, family photographs and candid images grace the pages, augmenting the emotional and physical journey each youth has taken.
Freakboy by Kristin Elizabeth Clark
From the outside, Brendan Chase seems to have it pretty easy. He’s a star wrestler, a video game aficionado, and a loving boyfriend to his seemingly perfect match, Vanessa. But on the inside, Brendan struggles to understand why his body feels so wrong – why he sometimes fantasises about having long hair, soft skin, and gentle curves. Is there even a name for guys like him? Guys who sometimes want to be girls? Or is Brendan just a freak? In razor-sharp verse, Kristin Clark folds three narratives into one powerful story. Brendan trying to understand his sexual identity, Vanessa fighting to keep her and Brendan’s relationship alive, and Angel struggling to confront her demons.
This book is gay by James Dawson
Former PSHCE teacher and acclaimed YA author James Dawson gives an uncensored look at sexual orientation and gender identity. Including testimonials from people across the gender and sexual spectrums, this frank, funny, fully inclusive book explores everything anyone who ever dared to wonder wants to know – from sex to politics, how to pull, stereotypes, how to come-out and more.
|Two boys kissing by David Levithan
The two boys kissing are Craig and Harry. They’re hoping to set the world record for the longest kiss. They’re not a couple, but they used to be. Peter and Neil are a couple. Their kisses are different. Avery and Ryan have only just met and are trying to figure out what happens next. Cooper is alone. He’s not sure how he feels. As the marathon progresses, these boys, their friends and families evaluate the changing nature of feelings, behaviour and this crazy thing called love.
Out by Joanna Kenrick and illustrated by Julia Page
‘I think I’m gay’ are not the words a teenage girl wants to hear when she’s about to confess to her best friend that she fancies him. But Natalie’s got to disguise her own feelings for Will when he tells her his secret. Can she help him as he comes out to the rest of their class at school?
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
16-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. And worse still, so will the privacy of ‘Blue’, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing. With messy dynamics emerging in Simon’s once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s life suddenly becomes just a little complicated. Now Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out – without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.
Hero by Perry Moore
Thom Creed is used to being on his own. Even though he’s a basketball star, his school classmates keep their distance. They have picked up on something different about Thom. Plus, he can’t escape his father’s history. Hal Creed was one of the greatest superheroes of his time until a catastrophic event left him disfigured and an outcast.
The art of being normal by Lisa Williamson
David is funny and quirky and has always felt different from other people – but he also has a huge secret that only his two best friends know. Ever since he can remember, he has felt like a girl trapped in the body of a boy.
|Like other girls by Claire Hennessy
Here’s what sixteen-year-old Lauren knows: she’s not like other girls. She also knows it’s problematic to say that – what’s wrong with girls? She’s even fancied some in the past – but if you were stuck in St Agnes’s, her posh all-girls school in Ireland, you’d feel like that too. Here everyone’s expected to be Perfect Young Ladies – it’s even a song in the painfully-cheesy and sexist musical they’re putting on this year, directed by Lauren’s arch-nemesis. Lauren is not like other girls, and nor is her friend Evan, who’s just come out as a trans boy – which Lauren knows she’s supposed to be cool with but still feels betrayed by. (Having had an unrequited crush on Evan for years doesn’t help, either). Why can’t everyone just be themselves without obsessing over labels? Then Lauren discovers she’s pregnant – the most girlish thing of all.
Our own private universe by Robin Talley
15-year-old Aki Simon has a theory. And it’s mostly about sex. No, it isn’t that kind of theory. Aki already knows she’s bisexual – even if, until now, it’s mostly been in the hypothetical sense. Aki’s theory is that she’s only got one shot at living an interesting life – and that means she’s got to stop sitting around and thinking so much. It’s time for her to actually do something. Or at least try. So when Aki and her friend Lori set off on a trip to a small Mexican town for the summer, and Aki meets Christa – slightly-older, far-more-experienced – it seems her theory is prime for the testing. But something tells her it’s not going to be that easy.
Fight like a girl : 50 feminists who changed the world by Laura Barcella
Feminism is a hot topic. The battle for gender equality is being fought by everybody from politicians to indie social media campaigners, celebrities to school girls. But how did we get here and who paved the way for today’s badass women? ‘Fight Like a Girl’ profiles 50 fearless women – both the historical icons and the unsung heroes – such as Mary Wollstonecraft, Frida Kahlo and Roxane Gay. Each extraordinary life story is accompanied by a stunning portrait, along with eye-opening sidebars on their hard-fought causes and iconic quotes. Be inspired by their stories, arm yourself with their knowledge, get active and ‘Fight like a girl.’
Release by Patrick Ness
Today will change Adam Thorn’s life. Between his religious family, unpleasant boss and his ex-boyfriend, the bindings of his world are coming undone. And way across town, a ghost has risen from the lake. Is there time for Adam to find his release?
|History is all you left me by Adam Silvera
OCD-afflicted seventeen-year-old, Griffin, has just lost his first love – his best friend, ex-boyfriend and the boy he believed to be his ultimate life partner – in a drowning accident. In a desperate attempt to hold onto every last piece of the past, a broken Griffin forges a friendship with Theo’s new college boyfriend, Jackson. And Griffin will stop at nothing to learn every detail of Theo’s new college life, and ultimate death. But as the grieving pair grows closer, readers will question Griffin’s own version of the truth – both in terms of what he’s willing to hide, and what true love ultimately means.
The last days of Archie Maxwell by Annabel Pitcher
Dads leave home all the time. It’s not that unusual, really. Leon’s dad walked out. So did Mo’s. But Archie’s? Well, that’s a different story – a story that Archie must keep secret at all cost. Archie knows he should accept Dad for who he is, so he hides his turmoil until he can stand it no longer. With nowhere else to turn, he finds himself at the railway track. The track has been calling to him, promising escape, and release. The only problem is, it’s been calling to someone else too.
If I was your Girl by Meredith Russo
My name is Amanda. I’m 18. When you look at me, you might see that I’m pretty and popular, you might think my life is easy. But being me has never been easy – because I haven’t always been Amanda. When I was born, I was named Andrew. Now, at my new school, I finally feel like myself. But do I owe my new friends the truth about my past?
Lies we tell ourselves by Robin Talley
In 1959 Virginia, the lives of two girls on opposite sides of the battle for civil rights will be changed forever. Sarah Dunbar is one of the first black students to attend the previously all-white Jefferson High School. Linda Hairston is the daughter of one of the town’s most vocal opponents of school integration. She has been taught all her life that the races should be kept ‘separate but equal.’ Forced to work together on a school project, Sarah and Linda must confront harsh truths about race, power and how they really feel about one another.
All of the recommended titles can be borrowed from Wokingham Borough Libraries https://wokingham.spydus.co.uk or visit www.wokingham.gov.uk/libraries