The Verifiers by Jane Pek (Sapphic Mystery)
Introducing Claudia Lin: a sharp-witted amateur sleuth for the 21st century. This debut novel follows Claudia as she verifies people’s online lives, and lies, for a dating detective agency in New York City. Until a client with an unusual request goes missing…
Claudia is used to disregarding her fractious family’s model-minority expectations: she has no interest in finding either a conventional career or a nice Chinese boy. She’s also used to keeping secrets from them, such as that she prefers girls—and that she’s just been stealth-recruited by Veracity, a referrals-only online-dating detective agency.
A lifelong mystery reader who wrote her senior thesis on Jane Austen, Claudia believes she’s landed her ideal job. But when a client vanishes, Claudia breaks protocol to investigate—and uncovers a maelstrom of personal and corporate deceit. Part literary mystery, part family story, The Verifiers is a clever and incisive examination of how technology shapes our choices, and the nature of romantic love in the digital age.
Delilah Green Doesn’t Care by Ashley Herring Blake (Bisexual and Lesbian Romance)
Delilah Green swore she would never go back to Bright Falls—nothing is there for her but memories of a lonely childhood where she was little more than a burden to her cold and distant stepfamily. Her life is in New York, with her photography career finally gaining steam and her bed never empty. Sure, it’s a different woman every night, but that’s just fine with her.
When Delilah’s estranged stepsister, Astrid, pressures her into photographing her wedding with a guilt trip and a five-figure check, Delilah finds herself back in the godforsaken town that she used to call home. She plans to breeze in and out, but then she sees Claire Sutherland, one of Astrid’s stuck-up besties, and decides that maybe there’s some fun (and a little retribution) to be had in Bright Falls, after all.
Having raised her eleven-year-old daughter mostly on her own while dealing with her unreliable ex and running a bookstore, Claire Sutherland depends upon a life without surprises. And Delilah Green is an unwelcome surprise…at first. Though they’ve known each other for years, they don’t really know each other—so Claire is unsettled when Delilah figures out exactly what buttons to push. When they’re forced together during a gauntlet of wedding preparations—including a plot to save Astrid from her horrible fiancé—Claire isn’t sure she has the strength to resist Delilah’s charms. Even worse, she’s starting to think she doesn’t want to…
Beyond the Blue by TJ O’Shea (F/F Romance)
Numbers rule Dr. Mei Sharpe’s life. She has no husband, one friend, two daughters, and three random meetings with the same woman within four weeks. Once is chance, twice is coincidence, but upon the third meeting, even Mei in all her empirical rigidness must admit that perhaps the universe is giving her a nudge. A nudge that lands her directly in the path of Lieutenant Morgan Kelly—an affable, charming detective for the Sheriff Department’s brand-new cold case team working down the hall from Mei’s morgue.
More golden retriever than hard-boiled detective, Morgan is determined to pull the asocial widow out of her shell. As the icy scientist warms to her cheerful new friend, an irrepressible chemistry develops, and Mei begins to realize she’s perhaps a different number on the Kinsey scale than previously considered.
As Mei and Morgan struggle with guilt and grief, drama and desires, Mei finds her scientific austerity is no match for the universe and its nudges toward the startling revelation of what her heart really wants.
Scorpica (The Five Queendoms #1) by G.R. Macallister (Sapphic Fantasy)
A centuries-long peace is shattered in a matriarchal society when a decade passes without a single girl being born in this sweeping epic fantasy that’s perfect for fans of Robin Hobb and Circe.
Five hundred years of peace between queendoms shatters when girls inexplicably stop being born. As the Drought of Girls stretches across a generation, it sets off a cascade of political and personal consequences across all five queendoms of the known world, throwing long-standing alliances into disarray as each queendom begins to turn on each other—and new threats to each nation rise from within.
Uniting the stories of women from across the queendoms, this propulsive, gripping epic fantasy follows a warrior queen who must rise from childbirth bed to fight for her life and her throne, a healer in hiding desperate to protect the secret of her daughter’s explosive power, a queen whose desperation to retain control leads her to risk using the darkest magic, a near-immortal sorcerer demigod powerful enough to remake the world for her own ends—and the generation of lastborn girls, the ones born just before the Drought, who must bear the hopes and traditions of their nations if the queendoms are to survive.
Sisters of the Forsaken Stars (Our Lady of Endless Worlds #2) by Lina Rather (Queer Science Fiction)
“We lit the spark, maybe we should be here for the flames.”
Not long ago, Earth’s colonies and space stations threw off the yoke of planet Earth’s tyrannical rule. Decades later, trouble is brewing in the Four Systems, and Old Earth is flexing its power in a bid to regain control over its lost territories.
The Order of Saint Rita―whose mission is to provide aid and mercy to those in need―bore witness to and defied Central Governance’s atrocities on the remote planet Phyosonga III. The sisters have been running ever since, staying under the radar while still trying to honor their calling.
Despite the sisters’ secrecy, the story of their defiance is spreading like wildfire, spearheaded by a growing anti-Earth religious movement calling for revolution. Faced with staying silent or speaking up, the Order of Saint Rita must decide the role they will play―and what hand they will have―in reshaping the galaxy.
Tripping Arcadia by Kit Mayquist (Bisexual F/F Gothic)
Med school dropout Lena is desperate for a job, any job, to help her parents, who are approaching bankruptcy after her father was injured and laid off nearly simultaneously. So when she is offered a position, against all odds, working for one of Boston’s most elite families, the illustrious and secretive Verdeaus, she knows she must accept it—no matter how bizarre the interview or how vague the job description.
By day, she is assistant to the family doctor and his charge, Jonathan, the sickly, poetic, drunken heir to the family empire, who is as difficult as his illness is mysterious. By night, Lena discovers the more sinister side of the family, as she works overtime at their lavish parties, helping to hide their self-destructive tendencies . . . and trying not to fall for Jonathan’s alluring sister, Audrey. But when she stumbles upon the knowledge that the Verdeau patriarch is the one responsible for the ruin of her own family, Lena vows to get revenge—a poison-filled quest that leads her further into this hedonistic world than she ever bargained for, forcing her to decide how much—and who—she’s willing to sacrifice for payback.
The perfect next read for fans of Mexican Gothic, Tripping Arcadia is a page-turning and shocking tale with an unforgettable protagonist that explores family legacy and inheritance, the sacrifices we must make to get by in today’s world, and the intoxicating, dangerous power of wealth.
Extasia by Claire Legrand (Sapphic YA Horror)
Her name is unimportant.
All you must know is that today she will become one of the four saints of Haven. The elders will mark her and place the red hood on her head. With her sisters, she will stand against the evil power that lives beneath the black mountain–an evil which has already killed nine of her village’s men.
She will tell no one of the white-eyed beasts that follow her. Or the faceless gray women tall as houses. Or the girls she saw kissing in the elm grove.
Today she will be a saint of Haven. She will rid her family of her mother’s shame at last and save her people from destruction. She is not afraid. Are you?
This searing and lyrically written novel by the critically acclaimed author of Sawkill Girls beckons readers to follow its fierce heroine into a world filled with secrets and blood–where the truth is buried in lies and a devastating power waits, seething, for someone brave enough to use it.
Monologue Woven For You, Vol. 1 by Syu Yasaka (Yuri Manga)
A beautifully illustrated, full-color yuri love story at the intersection of two women’s conflicting passions.
Two women, one spotlight. Haruka has abandoned her dreams of the theater but finds herself still haunted by memories. Meanwhile, Nao chases her aspirations for the stage head-on, refusing to back down or let obstacles block her way.
After the lives of these two theater geeks cross, their aspirations will either form their friendship or fuel their rivalry. When romance sparks, which will prevail in the end: love…or the stage?
Time Out of Time by Arleen Paré (Lesbian Poetry)
Award-winning poet Arleen Paré pays homage to the work of lesbian Syrian American poet Etel Adnan.
If books come from books, as David W. McFadden has claimed, then Time Out of Time is a clear example, arising, very deliberately as it does, out of Etel Adnan’s astonishing collection entitled Time. The poems in Time Out of Time are in love with the poems in Adnan’s Time and, it seems, Paré has fallen in love with Time’s author, Etel Adnan, the internationally renowned poet and painter—or perhaps it is that she has merely fallen in love with Adnan’s words. Paré’s poems mirror the form, the rhythm, the shape, the short, brief lines in her own spare missives that are the poems in Time. This mirroring increases the intensity of Time Out of Time, creating a rare intimacy in Paré’s collection. Paré’s work pays homage to Adnan’s work. Both collections pay homage to the world of the lesbian in the twenty-first century and to the world of the small poem. Using clear, crisp, well-defined language in visibly defined geometries, in “stanza after sweet-smelling stanza,” Paré attempts to examine the trials of this new century, the hush around the word lesbian, the hush of the world’s general collapse.
Queer Data by Kevin Guyan (Queer Nonfiction)
Data has never mattered more. Our lives are increasingly shaped by it and how it is defined, collected and used. But who counts in the collection, analysis and application of data?
This important book is the first to look at queer data – defined as data relating to gender, sex, sexual orientation and trans identity/history. The author shows us how current data practices reflect an incomplete account of LGBTQ lives and helps us understand how data biases are used to delegitimise the everyday experiences of queer people.
Guyan demonstrates why it is important to understand, collect and analyse queer data, the benefits and challenges involved in doing so, and how we might better use queer data in our work. Arming us with the tools for action, this book shows how greater knowledge about queer identities is instrumental in informing decisions about resource allocation, changes to legislation, access to services, representation and visibility.