I follow an absolutely ridiculous amount of blogs through an RSS feed reader in order to put together weekly link round ups. (Over 200, not counting the additional Google alerts.) I love being flooded with queer book recs, but it means sifting through a lot of content that isn’t totally relevant.
With that in mind, I thought I’d put together a quick primer to some of the most helpful sites on the internet where you can find queer books. I want to put a big disclaimer here that I am very biased: I am primarily interested in queer women lit, so that is my focus. I do try to seek out sites that focus on trans lit, but I wouldn’t be surprised if I have missed some. (In fact, I hope I have—I want to find a lot more!) Please let me know in the comments which sites you recommend that I missed.
You can also find more links on the sidebar of the Lesbrary!
I have to start with Lambda Literary, who have been around since 1989. They have the annual Lambda Literary Awards, the biggest awards in LGBTQIA+ lit.
Format: Read Lambda Literary not just for the awards, but also the in-depth reviews and occasional news stories. Historically, it was much more focused on gay & lesbian books, but it has gotten better at representation in recent years.
Representation focus: This is probably the most even coverage on this list for the whole LGBTQIA acronym, though of course there are more gay & lesbian books published than intersex, asexual, trans, or even bi.
Genre focus: A range of genre, but focusing on traditionally published lit, especially “literary fiction.”
LGBTQ Reads, and especially their accompanying tumblr, is one of my favourite corners of the queer bookternet. It’s run by Dahlia Adler, an author of queer books, and she is constantly answering questions for recommendations, no matter how obscure the query, as well as putting together huge lists of recommendations in different genres. Also check out her LGBTQ book posts on Buzzfeed.
Format: LGBTQ Reads has less in the way of reviews and much more varied content, including excerpts, lists of new LGBTQ releases, guest posts, interviews, cover reveals, and Fave Fives focused on a topic.
Representation focus: As the name suggests, it covers a range of representation. (It might be my own bias, but I think there is a little more queer women lit covered, but not by a lot.)
Genre focus: Mostly YA.
Of course I couldn’t leave out one of my favourite queer book bloggers, and that’s Casey! As the name suggests, Casey does talk about queer Canadian lit and queer women lit a lot, but she has branched out into more generally queer book content as well. You should also check out her queer book posts on Autostraddle!
Format: Lots of (in depth, thoughtful) reviews, but also lists and discussion posts.
Representation focus: Often queer women, but not exclusively. More of a focus on Canadian books and authors of colour.
Genre focus: A range, but often “literary fiction.”
I also have to give some attention to sites that aren’t 100% LGBTQ books, but still put out a ton of LGBTQ book content:
Autostraddle is my favourite queer media source. Funny, political, and thoughtful, they’re my go-to for everything from movie reviews to reliable news coverage. Lately, though, they have been knocking the queer books coverage out of the park–mostly since Casey (of Casey the Canadian Lesbrarian) joined the team.
Format: Lots of lists on a theme (Casey runs an Ask Your Friendly Neighborhood Lesbrarian column), but also in-depth discussions of a single book, upcoming queer releases, and more.
Representation focus: Usually queer women, but not exclusively.
Genre focus: A range.
I’ve been working with Book Riot for five years now, starting with writing posts as a contributor, and now making weekly videos as a contributing editor! When I joined Book Riot, I really saw myself as the Queer Contributor, but while they were always a few LGBTQ posts going up, now there are tons!
Format: No reviews, lots of list articles as well as some general think pieces.
Representation focus: A range.
Genre focus: A range.
I can’t, of course, encompass all of the queer bookternet in a list of five, but these are some of my favourites, and following them will quickly lead you to more. Because I can’t help it, though, here’s a bullet list of more that I can’t bear to not mention:
- Black Lesbian Literary Collective focuses on black lesbian fiction! Lots of reviews and podcast episodes. (Sistahs on the Shelf is currently on hiatus, but hopefully they’ll be back soon with more black lesbian fiction reviews!)
- If you like SFF, you have to follow Cool Curry Books on tumblr, and check out the Queer SFF Book Database
- If you’re a romance reader, The Lesbian Review is an amazing resource: they catalogue all the books they review by trope, genre, age, etc, making it easy to find your perfect read!
- And if you are a manga fan, or want to start reading yuri, check out Okazu, a site that’s really stood the test of time! They also do regular link round ups for all the yuri news.
- If you’re on tumblr (after you’ve followed Bi and Lesbian Literature, of course!), check out Sapphic Book Club!
- YA Pride (formerly GayYA) is a great resource for LGBTQIA+ YA
- I don’t know of a lot of trans book blogs, sadly, but I do definitely recommend this post by Xan West of “Reviews of trans and/or non-binary lit by trans and/or non-binary reviewers“
- Similarly, aromantic and asexual books can be hard to locate, making The Aro Ace Database hugely useful.
- And finally, a few personal blogs that are mostly LGBTQ that I’ve really been enjoying: Reads Rainbow and Anxious Nachos
This is far from a complete list, and I’m always looking for more! What are some of your favourite resources for finding queer books?
An earlier version of this article ran at Book Riot.