Happy Pride everyone! However you celebrate/commemorate/acknowledge Pride Month, I hope it is a great June for you!
On a personal note, I am now *officially* on Summer Vacation, but my summer semester for Grad School also starts today. I signed up for three classes, so hopefully THAT isn’t a complete and utter disaster. If you stop seeing blog posts from me, you know why.
Was anyone surprised that Pride was the theme for June? No, I think not! I can’t wait to hear what you all are going to pick!
Before I move on to my pick, I want to give a brief Honorable Mention to The Priory of the Orange Tree. There are several LBTQ love stories at the front and center of Priory, but I think what impressed me even more was how Shannon built a culture that had no expectation for straight relationships. They didn’t even have the word “husband” or “wife”, you simply married a partner. There was some expectation for royalty to produce heirs, which obviously implies a hetero-relationship, but there was no stigma surrounding homosexuality. Shannon also wrote a monarchy that was not in any way patriarchal, which considering the founder was a literal patriarch is pretty cool! The book is a massive 840-pager, so if you haven’t gotten to it yet, no judgement. But if you like fantasy (especially queer fantasy) you really should make time for it. It’s SO GOOD.
On to my pick. At first I was debating, but shortly realized that was ridiculous because there was absolutely no question as to my favorite LGBTQ+ book. Forget favorite LGBTQ+ book, it’s hands down one of my favorite books PERIOD. So without any further ado, my pick for June is…
The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet
by Becky Chambers
How to even describe this book?? It’s about this ship of wormhole diggers, but it’s not really about what they do. They’re all stuck on this ship together on a long haul, and on the way life happens. They have to deal with each other, different personalities, different beliefs. Love happens, hate happens, injury happens. The characters are just SO AMAZING. You can’t help but fall in love with them, even the weird ones. (Especially the weird ones!) It’s really cool getting to know the different cultures, why the characters are the way they are.
And it presents a lot of questions about what love would look like in a universe with interplanetary travel. How do we feel about inter-species relationships? What about relationships with Artificial Intelligence? Is Artificial Intelligence a PERSON? What about species who don’t have the same gender-identification as we do? What happens when you’re the last of you’re species? So many unique love stories are in this novel that it’s hard to get too excited when the on-page f/f relationship finally happens, but that’s there too.
I honestly don’t even know how to talk about this book other than to say that it’s amazing and that EVERYONE should go read it, even people who don’t usually read Sci-Fi. It’s just the best.
Favorite Book with LGBTQ+ Representation
The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet – Katie (that’s me!) @ Never Not Reading
Chasing Nirvana – Adrienne @ Darque Dreamer Reads
The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue – Deanna @ Deanna Writes About
The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue – Flavia @ Flavia the Bibliophile
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo – Samantha @ Modern Witch’s Bookshelf
Women – Lucinda @ Lucinda is Reading
History is All You Left Me – Ashley @ Inside My Minds
Stop! – Sophie @ Beware of the Reader
Seven Blades in Black – Dani @ Mousai Books
Girls of Paper and Fire – Clarissa @ Clarissa Reads it All
Calendar Girls is a monthly blog event created by Melanie at MNBernard Books, and Flavia at Flavia the Bibliophile, and is now be hosted by me (!), Katie, and Adrienne at Darque Dreamer Reads. It is designed to ignite bookish discussions among readers, and was inspired by the 1961 Neil Sedaka song, Calendar Girl.
Just like the song, each month has a different theme. Each blogger picks their favorite book from the theme, and on the first Monday of the month reveals their pick in a Calendar Girls post. Make sure to post back to the hostess’s post, and I will make a master list for the month. The master lists allow everyone to see the other Calendar Girls’ picks and to pop on over to their blogs. Thus, we all get to chat about books and even make some new friends!