In March, I put together a list of sapphic books by trans and nonbinary authors for the Trans Rights Readathon, but we don’t need a readathon to read trans books!
For each of these, I tried to verify that the author publicly identifies as trans or nonbinary, but if I’ve made a mistake, please let me know and I’ll edit the post! I’m also using the broadest definition of sapphic in order to talk about as many books as possible, but if you’re an author who would rather their books aren’t categorized that way, let me know and I’ll remove it.
Some of these have trans main characters, some don’t, but all of them are by trans or nonbinary authors. Most of them have Lesbrary reviews linked, because so many of our favourite sapphic book are by trans authors!
Nevada by Imogen Binnie (review): one of my favourite books, following a trans lesbian who steals her ex-girlfriend’s car and goes on a road trip. It’s introspective, sarcastic, and unforgettable–and it recently got republished!
Missed Her by Ivan E. Coyote (review)—and everything else they’ve ever written: Ivan Coyote is an incredible storyteller, and I recommend not only all of their books, but also checking out their videos on YouTube.
The Collection: Short Fiction from the Transgender Vanguard edited by Tom Léger (review): this is a great way to be introduced to a bunch of trans authors, and it includes several F/F stories.
Detransition, Baby by Torrey Peters: this won the PEN/Hemingway Award along with many other honours and became an instant classic of trans literature.
Chef’s Kiss by TJ Alexander: an F/NB romance with a foodie element.
Who We Could Be (review) and many more by Chelsea Cameron: this is a grown up Anne of Green Gables-inspired romance (between Anne and Diana, obviously), but Chelsea Cameron writes lots of “tropetastic sapphic romances”!
If you find posts like this useful, help us keep the lights on by supporting the Lesbrary on Patreon. $2 and up supporters get access to a queer book giveaway every month!
Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror:
Meanwhile, Elsewhere: Science Fiction and Fantasy from Transgender Writers edited by Cat Fitzpatrick and Casey Plett (review): this is a fantastic collection that is also an introduction to a ton of trans authors, and it’s finally back in print!
Light From Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki (review): one of my favourite reads of last year! This has two sapphic main characters and a trans woman character. It’s genre-blending and heartwarming—but also, check the content warnings.
Her Majesty’s Royal Coven by Juno Dawson: a fantasy trilogy following witches who fight the patriarchy and also fight TERFs.
Unwieldy Creatures by Addie Brook Tsai: “a biracial, queer, nonbinary retelling of Mary Shelley’s classic novel Frankenstein.”
I Was Kidnapped By Lesbian Pirates From Outer Space!!! by Rosalarian, writing as Megan Rose Gedris: I’m linking a pirate website (appropriately) because the rights to this comic were essentially stolen from the author and it’s no longer available legitimately, sadly.
The Never Tilting World by Rin Chupeco: a sapphic YA fantasy dulogy pitched as Frozen meets Mad Max.
A Dark and Hollow Star by Ashley Shuttleworth: an urban YA fae fantasy with four queer teen main characters.
YA Graphic Novels:
Cheer Up: Love and Pompoms by Crystal Frasier, illustrated by Val Wise: an F/F YA graphic novel about two cheerleaders, one a trans girl.
As the Crow Flies by Melanie Gillman (review): a YA graphic novel about a queer Brown kid on a (white) feminist spiritual backpacking trip, where she feel very out of place until she bonds with a trans girl there.
YU+ME: dream by Rosalarian, writing as Megan Rose Gedris: this began as a webcomic in 2004 and ended in 2010, and there are some very big changes that happen in between. It’s a teenage love story–that then turns fantastical and experimental.
The Avant-Guards, Vol. 1 by Carly Usdin and Noah Haye: the adventures of a ragtag college basketball team.
Ellen Outside the Lines by A.J. Sass: a sapphic middle grade contemporary with an autistic main character and nonbinary side character.
Tomboy Survival Guide by Ivan Coyote (review) and Gender Failure by Ivan Coyote and Rae Spoon (review): you should read everything Ivan Coyote writes, for beautiful thoughts about gender, love, and being a human in the world.
How Far the Light Reaches: A Life in Ten Sea Creatures by Sabrina Imbler: one of my favourite reads of last year! It beautifully weaves together Imbler’s memoir, including being Asian and nonbinary in the U.S., with science writing. I can’t recommend this highly enough.
Kicked Out edited by Sassafras Lowrey (review): this was published in 2010, so keep that in mind while reading it, but it’s an invaluable look at the experiences of homeless LGBTQ youth, told from their own perspectives.
Care Work: Dreaming Disability Justice by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha (review): this work is about disability justice: disability activism that centres queer and trans black, indigenous, and people of colour.
The Future is Disabled by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha (review): this is another collection of essays about disability justice, but focused on the experiences of disabled people during the (ongoing) pandemics.
This isn’t a complete list! Let me know in the comments which books I’ve missed that have sapphic content and trans/nonbinary authors.