I thought I’d do a recommendation list for day 6, which focuses on green covers. All the books on this list are queer; I tried to have a bit of a cross-section, identity-wise. This list definitely shows my bias towards contemporary queer fiction, esp romance, but also includes historical romance, speculative fiction, YA fiction, litfic, and a retelling. I link to reviews where I have written them; and also where I have only posted trigger warnings, so you can easily find those. If I have not yet reviewed, I am using affiliate links to Amazon. If you buy through those links, I will make a small amount of money on that sale (which I plan to use to buy more books to review), but it will not add any to the cost of your product. It comes out of the company’s profits.
I’m listing marginalized representation at the end of my descriptions. If you spot something incorrect, please do feel free to let me know. I am not intending to out anyone; I get author info from the web and the book bio. If an author would like me to remove any info listed, please do let me know. I want to note that I use the word fat as a neutral descriptor when listing rep, and use the word queer when a character or author identify that way or when I am unclear about their identity but know they fall under the LGBTQIA+ umbrella.
For folks looking for books with no on-the-page sex, I am putting three asterisks*** .
- Look Who’s Morphing by Tom Cho (speculative short stories) A speculative/surrealist collection of mostly flash-length rather odd short stories that are deeply trans at the core. The author plays around with a wide range of media tropes and pop culture as a way to deconstruct identity. (Rep: Chinese Australian trans man author.)
- Team Phison by Chace Verity (contemporary m/m romance novella) I loved this fluffy age gap romance so much. Grumpy meets sweet via online MMORPG, both of them super geeky and awkward and adorable and I was rooting for them so hard. The sequel came out recently and it’s got a very different tone, but I loved it just as much. (Rep: Fat bisexual man MC. Older gay man MC. Non-binary pansexual author.)
- An Unexpected Invitation by Ceillie Simkiss (speculative novella)*** This is a magical quest kind of tale, that centers an aroace witch who is trying to find an accessible way to get to the wedding of chosen family, despite her motion sickness. It centers a range of platonic relationships, and has some fun moments of magical problem solving. My favorite bit was when the witch’s bisexual fae BFF gives her a beautiful present; it really held the way friendships can be deeply emotional and important, and I loved that. (Rep: Aroace woman MC. A cast of queer secondary characters including lesbian, bisexual and non-binary characters. Panromantic asexual woman author with ADHD and anxiety.)
- Her Every Wish by Courtney Milan (historical m/f romance novella) I loved this book, a lot. It has everything I have come to expect from a Milan romance: beautiful writing, complex characterization, high stakes, a nuanced exploration of class, brilliant dialogue with lots of lovely banter, a tightly woven arc, flawed MCs doing their best who win me over by the end, a story that’s steeped in feminism. The way this couple imploded the first time, I was doubtful that they would be able to repair their relationship. Untangling the way they parted and finding a path to apologizing to and forgiving each other was the core conflict, and the way it unfolded really worked for me as a reader. (Rep: Black-Indian British multiracial bisexual hero. Disabled secondary character with a chronic pain condition (likely arthritis). Black queer woman secondary character. Bisexual hapa woman author.)
- A Tiny Piece of Something Greater by Jude Sierra (contemporary m/m romance) I fell hard for Reid, felt so much with him in this story, which centers a young man in recovery from mental health crisis, and the way he finds love amidst the turmoil of trying to find solid ground again. (Rep: Latinx MC. MC with cyclothymia. Latinx Bi-ro, demi/ace author.)
- The Better to Kiss You With by Michelle Osgood (paranormal f/f romance novel) I really enjoyed this fun, funny, geeky, hot, butch/femme romance, told from the POV of the femme character. I love that basically everyone we meet in the book is queer. Oh, and the butch love interest is a werewolf. (Chubby femme queer woman MC. Butch queer woman MC. Queer woman author.)
- Pink Slip by Katrina Jackson. (contemporary m/f/f erotic romsusp novel) This is a polyamorous spy romance novella that resolves to m/f/f BDSM triad, and it’s wonderful. The MC is a personal assistant to a married couple who work for the CIA, and she falls for them both, basically right as soon as she meets them. This has a lot of humor, heat, and heart, with a dash of silly and a whole bunch of spy story yumminess, and it was a joy to read. (Rep: Black queer woman MC. Puerto Rican bisexual woman MC. Bisexual man MC. Black woman author.)
- A Little Queermas Carol by Sassafras Lowrey (kinky queer retelling of A Christmas Carol)*** A kinky queer retelling of the Dickens classic with a genderqueer Ebe who gives everything to the revolution as a way to manage their grief over losing their BFF, and isn’t sure they can commit to the Daddy/girl couple who want Ebe to be part of their family. Heartwrenching, intense, beautiful story that gave me so many feels. (Rep: Queer genderqueer MC. Queer trans masc love interest. Queer girl love interest. Queer non-binary secondary characters. Queer genderqueer author.)
- A Prince on Paper by Alyssa Cole (contemporary m/f romance novel) This installment in Cole’s Reluctant Royals series has a hero with so much emotional armor he is weighted down and cut off from authenticity and connection with those he loves, and I fell hard for him. I also really adored the heroine who was struggling with the legacy of emotional abuse and gaslighting from early childhood, and trying to find her own way in the face of that. It was great to be at the wedding of the MCs in book 1, and I really enjoyed the gaming aspect of this story, and the relationship dynamics with friends and family. This is compelling, full of heart, and has a lovely amount of humor interwoven with the heat. (Rep: African woman MC. Bisexual man MC with trauma. Non-binary secondary character. Black woman author.)
- Knit One, Girl Two by Shira Glassman (contemporary f/f romance novella)*** I adore this fun fluffy f/f contemporary romance between two Jewish queer girl artists, one of whom draws fan art for the other, of their shared fave superhero TV show. Wonderful fat rep, rugelach, shared geeky squee, and a mischievous kitty. (Rep: Lesbian Jewish woman MC. Bisexual Jewish fat woman MC. Bisexual Jewish woman author.)
- A Gentleman’s Position by KJ Charles (historical m/m romance novel) This is the last in a series of books centering closeted gay men in the same friendship group. This book centers the leader of the group who is very invested in propriety and has developed very improper feelings about his valet, who basically would do anything for him, and is extremely competent at his job, while still wanting a relationship with his boss that feels real to him. (Rep: Demisexual gay man MC. Gay man MC.)
- Not Your Villain by CB Lee (superhero YA novel) This is the second in the Sidekick Squad series, and it centers Bells, a trans boy who goes through metahuman training, and ends up working together with his friends to take down a corrupt government and also maybe confessing his crush on his best friend. It’s best to read book one first (and it’s wonderful), and this is especially fun for folks into superhero school and secret identity aspects of superhero life. (Rep: Black trans teen boy MC. Latinx aroace questioning teen girl love interest. Chinese-Vietnamese biracial bisexual girl secondary character. Queer girl secondary character. Chinese-Vietnamese biracial bisexual woman author.)
- Off the Ice by Avon Gale and Piper Vaughn (contemporary m/m romance novel) I enjoyed this romance where a pro hockey player falls for his professor. After the class is over, they start a D/s relationship that includes teacher/student role play. So glad that this was reprinted recently by a new publisher! (Rep: Gay MC. Latinx MC. Bi/demirom/grayace woman author. Latinx bi enby author.)
- The Art of French Kissing by Brianna Shrum (contemporary m/f YA romance novel) I loved this YA hate to love romance centered around a cooking competition for a scholarship to culinary school. It was engaging, complex, and funny. It had characters I fell hard for, and it made me feel so many things. (Rep: Japanese American queer boy MC with anxiety. Lesbian secondary characters. Indian American secondary characters. Queer Jewish woman author.)
- Green Toes by Avery Flinders (contemporary fantasy f/genderqueer romance novella)*** A lovely short centering a bi woman who moves to the city for queer community, finds magic boots, and falls for a genderqueer person who lives down the road. (Rep: Bisexual woman MC. Queer non-binary love interest. Queer non-binary author.)
- Unwrap Me by Jack Harbon (contemp m/m erotic novella) This feels like a very queer NA Christmas romance, complete with an MC home from college for Christmas, supportive siblings, queer antagonism from parents, lovely holiday traditions, and an intense attraction to dad’s queer colleague who is staying with the family over Christmas. At it’s core, its about working through internalized shame to claim queer desire, and I love that about it. (Rep: Gay man MC. Latinx gay man MC. Black gay man author.)