June is Pride Month, which honors the anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall Riots, which served as a catalyst of the modern gay rights movement. At the Topsfield Town Library, to acknowledge the contributions of the LGBTQIA community, we have created this reading guide highlighting excellent LGBTQIA Fiction (from award winners, drama, to mystery, to historical fiction, to comedy, and to romance), and we are highlighting LGBTQIA fiction with our Pride display during the month of June.

Did you know?

Did you know that we have a new filter where you can search for LGBTQ+ topics exclusively? When visiting our catalog searching for materials, look for the drop down menu on the left side (it defaults as “Everything”) and find “LGBTQ+” in the drop down menu. Your search will only search for items with LGBTQ+ topics as an included subject. Check it out!

What is LGBTQIA fiction?

LGBTQIA fiction includes stories written by and/or for the LGBTQIA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning, intersex, asexual) community.
They involve LGBTQIA characters and themes.

Other Places to Look

Find nonfiction books on the second floor, including LGBTQIA memoirs, history, and politics.
The Children’s Room has stories about LGBTQIA youth, as well as “teaching books” about inclusion, families, and gender. Read our LGBTQIA+ Reads list for Kids for a selection of reading choices!
The Young Adult section has a large and growing selection of books about LGBTQIA teens. Read our LGBTQIA+ Books for Teens reading list for a selection of reading choices!

Spotlight: Stephen McCauley

On April 29, 2023, the Topsfield Town Library hosted author Stephen McCauley in the library Activity Room (the talk was sponsored by the Friends of the Topsfield Town Library). Stephen McCauley is the author of eight novels, most famously The Object of my Affection. Other novels by Stephen McCauley: My Ex-Life, Insignificant Others, Alternatives to Sex, True Enough, The Man of the House, and The Easy Way Out, and You Only Call When You’re in Trouble. His novels feature gay characters and contain trademark witty humor.

Check These Titles Out!

Rom-Coms and Romance

Love and Hot Chicken by Mary Liza Hartong
Review from Kirkus: “An uproarious and understated story of family, friendship, and romance set in the neon-lit haze of a Southern chicken shack…By turns hilarious, sad, and introspective, this cross between Steel Magnolias and Gilmore Girls will appeal to anyone who has searched for answers about life and how to live it in a plate of fried chicken. A clever, heartfelt meditation on grief.”

A Dash of Salt and Pepper by Kosoko Jackson
Xavier is a driven, career-oriented MBA grad who returns to his small-town. He crosses paths with Logan, and finds he must choose between love and his career dreams.

Iris Kelly Doesn’t Date by Ashley Herring Blake
Everyone around Iris Kelly is in love. Her best friends are all coupled up, her siblings have partners that are perfect for them, and her parents are still blissfully married. And she’s happy for all of them, truly. Iris doesn’t want any of that, thanks very much. But when Iris tries out for the lead role in a local play, a queer retelling of Much Ado About Nothing, she comes face-to-face with Stefania, whose real name turns out to be Stevie. When Stevie asks Iris to play along as her girlfriend, Iris is shocked, but she agrees. As the two women play the part of a happy couple, lines start to blur, and they’re left wondering who will make the real first move…

Stars in Your Eyes by Kacen Callender
Two fake-dating actors navigate their love story both on and offscreen.

Cleat Cute by Meryl Wilsner
Review from Booklist: Author of several popular LGBTQI+ romances, Wilsner breaks new ground with a sporty twist on the meet-cute trope. …Fans of the popular Apple TV show Ted Lasso and the classic sporty romance film Bend It like Beckham will cheer for this sexy sapphic rom-com that fills a gap in the heretofore male-dominated sports romance genre.

10 Things That Never Happened by Alexis Hall
From Publishers’ Weekly: “Hall…offers a fresh take on the amnesia trope…The plotting is rom-com gold, Hall’s typical wit is on display, and the eclectic supporting cast charms.”


Wild Geese by Soula Emmanuel
Phoebe Forde has a new home, a new name, and is newly thirty. An Irish transplant and PhD candidate, she’s overeducated and underpaid, but finally settling into her new life in Copenhagen. Almost three years into her gender transition, Phoebe has learned to move through the world carefully, savoring small moments of joy. After all, a woman without a past can be anyone she wants. But an unexpected visit from her ex-girlfriend Grace brings back memories of Dublin and the life she thought she’d left behind. Over the course of a weekend, their romance rekindles into something sweet and radically unfamiliar as Grace helps Phoebe navigate the jagged edges of nostalgia and hope.

Family Meal by Bryan Washington
Haunted by the ghost of Kai, the love of his life, Cam returns to his hometown of Houston where he reconnects with his former best friend, TJ, and his family’s bakery and wonders if they can find a way back to being okay again.

Big Swiss by Jen Beagin
A woman in upstate New York who works transcribing therapy sessions for a sex coach becomes infatuated with one of his clients, a repressed married woman from Switzerland who has a refreshing attitude towards trauma.

How We Named the Stars by Andres N. Ordorica
From Booklist: It’s 2011 when freshmen Daniel and Sam, two uprooted Californians, meet as roommates at Cayuga University in Ithaca, New York. Daniel is a quiet and shy Mexican American nerd and a scholarship student. Sam is a gregarious and popular golden-boy athlete who helps Daniel navigate this intimidating world. Their friendship evolves into love, only to end in tragedy.  First-time novelist Ordorica delves into love and loss in two places and two times to powerful effec.

Blackouts by Justin Torres
Out in the desert in a place called the Palace, a young man tends to a dying soul, someone he once knew briefly, but who has haunted the edges of his life.

Rainbow Black by Maggie Thrash
From Publishers Weekly: Thrash makes her adult debut with a gripping story about the Satanic panic of the 1980s and its impact on a New Hampshire family…Thrash convinces in her wrenching portrait of a community’s intolerance and the resilience of queer love. Readers will be stirred.

The Bell in the Fog by Lev AC Rosen
San Francisco, 1952. Detective Evander “Andy” Mills has started a new life for himself as a private detective—but his business hasn’t taken off. It turns out that word spreads when you have a bad reputation, and no one in the queer community trusts him enough to ask an ex-cop for help. When James, an old flame who had mysteriously disappeared, arrives in his offices, Andy wants to kick him out. But the job seems to be a simple case of blackmail, and Andy’s debts are piling up. He agrees to investigate, despite everything it stirs up. The case will take him to the shadowy, closeted world of the Navy, and then out into the gay bars of the city, where the past rises up to meet him.

Cinema Love by Jiaming Tang
After emigrating to New York City’s Chinatown Old Second and Bao Mei reminisce about their secret past in a rural Chinese cinema that taught them to navigate forbidden love, societal pressures and an uncertain future.

Manywhere by Morgan Thomas
The nine stories in Morgan Thomas’s shimmering debut collection witness Southern queer and genderqueer characters determined to find themselves reflected in the annals of history, whatever the cost. As Thomas’s subjects trace deceit and violence through Southern tall tales and their own pasts, their journeys reveal the porous boundaries of body, land, and history, and the sometimes ruthless awakenings of self-discovery.

The Out Side: Trans and Non-Binary Comics
In this vibrant and affirming comics anthology, 29 trans & nonbinary comic artists share their personal journeys of self-discovery and acceptance. Equal parts encouraging, comforting, and life-affirming, The Out Side is a love letter to the trans and nonbinary community, designed to inspire anyone who may be struggling with their own identity and to help educate those who seek greater understanding.

City of Laughter by Temim Fruchter
Recovering from the breakup of her first queer relationship and grieving the death of her father. Shiva Margolin, a student of Jewish folklore, decides to visit Poland to walk in the footsteps of the family members who went before her.

Welcome to Forever by Nathan Tavares
A sweeping, psychedelic romance of two men caught in a looping world of artificial realities, edited memories, secretive cabals and conspiracies to push humanity to the next step in its evolution.

Award Winners

View our Award Winners Research Guide to view winners of presitigous awards like the Barbara Gittings Literature Stonewall Award which is awarded by the American Library Association’s Rainbow Round Table  for exceptional merit relating to the gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender experience, and the Lambda Literary Awards, created in 1989 to garner national visibility for LGBTQ books.

Updated: June 2024

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