If there’s anything we’ve learned from Mother Ru here at Logo, it’s that reading is fundamental. Below, we’ll pulled together 11 enticing queer titles—either by LGBTQ authors or featuring LGBTQ characters—that we can’t wait to crack open this spring. Happy reading!
Legendary Children by Tom Fitzgerald and Lorenzo MarquezPenguin Random House
Legendary Children: The First Decade of RuPaul’s Drag Race and the Last Century of Queer Life is the nonfiction debut from Tom Fitzgerald and Lorenzo Marquez, a.k.a. pop culture bloggers Tom + Lorenzo. The tome details the significance of RuPaul’s smash-hit drag competition series as a touchstone of contemporary LGBTQ culture—and identifies the decades-old queer histories that Drag Race segments like “the Snatch Game” or “the Untucked lounge” reference. Out now.
Save Yourself by Cameron EspositoGrand Central Publishing
The out comic, screenwriter, and podcast host of Queery With Cameron Esposito tackles a new topic in her first memoir: religion. Save Yourself digs deep into the pitfalls of growing up gay and Catholic—a very human, very relatable tug-of-war Esposito experienced firsthand and is finally ready to talk about. Esposito hive, rest assured: She does so with honesty, humility, and plenty of laughs. March 24.
Female Husbands: A Trans History by Jen ManionCambridge University Press
With Female Husbands, Manion is breaking ground: The 350-page book is the first work of its kind exploring “female husbands,” or people who were assigned female at birth but lived their lives as men in the U.S. and the U.K. before the turn of the 20th century. Offering insight into a seldom-explored facet of American and British LGBTQ history, it carries readers through the colonial era all the way to the advent of World War I. March 26.
Wow, No Thank You: Essays by Samantha IrbyVintage
In her latest collection, the blogger (bitches gotta eat), essayist (Meaty; We Are Never Meeting in Real Life), and screenwriter (the “Pool” episode of Hulu’s Shrill) gets real about life in Los Angeles. At 40 years old, she’s “increasingly uncomfortable in her own skin” despite her professional successes and what “Inspirational Instagram Infographics” have promised her. Wow, No Thank You is said to be Irby’s rawest, most unflinching work yet. March 31.
Girl Crushed by Katie HeaneyPenguin Random House
In Girl Crushed, protagonist Quinn Ryan heads back to school for her senior year after her BFF-turned-GF, Jamie Rudawski, breaks up with her. Quinn then develops a crush on Ruby Ocampo—the cool, stupid-hot lead singer of a local band—but their burgeoning relationship only complicates her messy, feelings-filled friendship with Jamie post-breakup. The book is the YA debut from Heaney, a journalist, author, and senior writer at The Cut. April 7.
The Prettiest Star by Carter SickelsHub City Press
Sickels’ highly anticipated novel transports readers to 1986, one year after Hollywood icon Rock Hudson died of AIDS-related complications and brought the crisis to a national stage. Protagonist Brian Jackson, a New York City transplant by way of rural Appalachia, has lost all of his chosen family, including his lover, to the AIDS epidemic. In an effort to quell his loneliness, he reaches out to his family back home, reconnecting with the people and place he was dying to escape not so long ago. This poignant story unfolds in chapters told from different perspectives, including Brian’s mother and 14-year-old sister, Jess. April 14.
Kept Animals: A Novel by Kate MillikenScribner
Milliken’s debut novel follows Rory Ramos, a teenage ranch hand at a stable in California in 1993. While riding horses for wealthy Californians, she attracts the attention of June Fisk, an out-and-proud lesbian, as well as Vivian Price, the ultra-rich daughter of a Hollywood mogul who lives nearby. The trio become bound together by circumstance, but their relationship changes forever after a forest fire rips through the desert canyons of the Golden State. Kept Animals is told from the perspective of Charlie, Rory’s daughter, 20 years after that fateful blaze. April 21.
The Heart: Frida Kahlo in Paris by Marc PetitjeanOther Press
Using his own father’s whirlwind romance with Frida Kahlo as an entry point, Petitjean takes a deep dive into the beloved Mexican painter’s work and personal life, specifically her stint in Paris in the 1930s. The Heart offers a never-before-scene glimpse into the queer luminary’s impact on the City of Love’s surrealist art scene, and features cameos from Kahlo contemporaries like Pablo Picasso, André Breton, Dora Maar, and Marcel Duchamp. April 28.
Boys of Alabama by Genevieve HudsonLiveright
In this queer spin on the Southern Gothic genre, Hudson introduces readers to Max, a shy German teenager living in Alabama with his immigrant parents. Max ingratiates himself to his high school’s football team, “playing dress-up” as a bro-y American jock—but everything changes when he meets Pan, a fellow outcast and the school’s resident teen witch. The pair throw themselves into an all-consuming relationship, but their dark backstories soon come to light, threatening to overshadow what they’ve created. May 19.
All My Mother’s Lovers by Ilana MasadDutton
Billed as a “queer tour de force,” All My Mother’s Lovers follows Maggie Krause, a 27-year-old reeling in the aftermath of her mother Iris’ sudden death. Armed with her will and handwritten letters addressed to five mysterious men, Maggie embarks on a road trip to hand-deliver each note. The outcome? Revelations that completely upend Maggie’s understanding of Iris’ life—and threaten her relationship with Lucia, the first girlfriend she’s managed to keep around. May 26.
Fairest: A Memoir by Meredith TalusanViking
In her first memoir, the journalist, essayist, and founding executive editor of Them guides readers through different stages of her life, from her childhood as a boy born with albinism in the Philippines to her adulthood as a woman living and writing in America. Stateside, she grapples with the complexities of race, gender, and sexuality in a world that largely perceives her as white, eventually deciding to begin her gender transition at the risk of losing the man she loves. May 26.