Hi everyone! Today we’re bringing you a post featuring some amazing books by queer and trans authors of colour, so there’s going to be plenty of diverse books for you to add to your TBR! Most of these are YA as that’s what we mostly read! If we missed your favourite QTPOC author or you love one of the authors we included, please drop a comment and let us know! Hope you enjoy 🙂 – Sasha and Amber
GIRLS OF PAPER AND FIRE BY NATASHA NGAN
We both adore this book series so much and are constantly talking about it! Set in a gorgeous Asian-inspired fantasy world, we follow two girls who are concubines for the demon king as they fall in love and plot to kill him. Not only is the romance gorgeous, but the portrayal of sexual abuse is written SO well, the characters are all so unique and dimensional and this book is also very feminist!!
HENNA WARS BY ADIBA JAIGIRDAR
Although it’s not out yet, I loved this book WAY too much to not include it here! If you like rivals-to-lovers, childhood friendship rekindling or a bad-ass mainly female cast, this book is a great one to pick up! We follow two brown girls as they both decide to set up rival henna businesses for one of their classes and end up falling in love ❤ This book deals with homophobia, cultural appropriation, coming out and so many more important topics, I cannot urge you enough to pre-order it!! Review here.
MOONCAKES BY SUZANNE WALKER & WENDY XU
This gorgeous graphic novel is a story about a witch and a werewolf and is full of sapphic goodness, magic, love and self-discovery. The artwork in this novel is also so beautiful and the character’s are so expressive!
JULIET TAKES A BREATH BY GABBY RIVERA
Juliet Milagros Palante has just come out to her family and is unsure if her mum will ever speak to her again. So, when she goes to an internship in Portland, she leaves all of that behind and focuses on getting to know herself and whether or not she’s just running away from her problems.
ANGER IS A GIFT BY MARK OSHIRO
This beautiful story tackles racism and anxiety when we follow Moss Jefferies and his fellow classmates who find themselves increasingly treated like criminals by their own school. New rules. Random locker searches. Moss is faced a difficult choice: give in to fear and hate or realize that anger can actually be a gift.
DARK AND DEEPEST RED BY ANNA-MARIE MCLEMORE
Summer, 1518. A sickness sweeps through Strasbourg: women dance in the streets, some until they fall down dead. Five centuries later, a pair of red shoes seal to Rosella’s feet, making her dance uncontrollably. They draw her toward Emil, whose family was blamed for the fever five hundred years ago, discovering the truth may decide whether Rosella survives the red shoes.
THE NEVER TILTING WORLD BY RIN CHUPECO
Years ago, two sisters fell out, and the world split in half, dividing into two realms. Now the daughters of the sisters must come together to heal their world. This book is one of our favourites and features found family and a f/f romance :)) Review here.
SCAVENGE THE STARS BY TARA SIM
Amaya wants one thing: revenge against the man who ruined her family and stole the life she once had. But the more entangled she becomes in this game of deception—and as her path intertwines with the son of the man she’s plotting to bring down—the more she uncovers about the truth of her past. And the more she realizes she must trust no one…
THE GOOD LUCK GIRLS BY CHARLOTTE NICHOLE DAVIS
A story of rebellion and crushing the patriarchy in a western-esque world starring five fierce girls as they escape the pleasure house they were indentured to to claim their freedom, in this fiercely feminist fantasy story. Review here.
FELIX EVER AFTER BY KACEN CALLENDER
When an anonymous student begins sending him transphobic messages—after publicly posting Felix’s deadname alongside images of him before he transitioned—Felix comes up with a plan for revenge. What he didn’t count on: his catfish scenario landing him in a quasi–love triangle…
CEMETERY BOYS BY AIDAN THOMAS
When his traditional Latinx family has problems accepting his gender, Yadriel becomes determined to prove himself a real brujo. So, he performs the ritual himself, and then sets out to find the ghost of his murdered cousin and set it free. However, the ghost he summons is actually Julian Diaz, the school’s resident bad boy, and Julian is not about to go quietly into death. Pre-order this book now!
CLAP WHEN YOU LAND BY ELIZABETH ACEVEDO
I (Sasha) just finished this gorgeous story, written in poem, and I was crying so much at the ending! When their father dies on a plane crash, two girls from different sides of the world discover that they have a secret sister their father never told them about. This book was absolutely stunning, lyrical and breathtaking. I adored Camino and Yahaira and I can’t wait to read more from Elizabeth Acevedo!
INFINITY SON BY ADAM SILVERA
Balancing epic and intensely personal stakes, this novel is a gritty, fast-paced adventure about two brothers caught up in a magical war generations in the making. In a brawl after a protest, Emil manifests a power of his own—one that puts him right at the heart of the conflict and sets him up to be the heroic Spell Walker his brother Brighton always wanted to be.
HARLEY IN THE SKY BY AKEMI DAWN BOWMAN
Harley has always wished to be a trapeze artist, and after a huge fight with her parents, she runs away, betrays them and joins a travelling circus where she must learn the value of hard work and passion while also coming to terms with the truth about her family.
THE MERMAID THE WITCH AND THE SEA BY MAGGIE TOKUDA HALL
A desperate orphan turned pirate and a rebellious imperial daughter find a connection on the high seas in a world divided by colonialism and threaded with magic. As the pirates prepare to sell their unsuspecting passengers into slavery, Flora is drawn to the Lady Evelyn Hasegawa, and together they set in motion a wild escape that will free a captured mermaid, and involve an opportunistic witch, and the all-encompassing Sea itself.
ASH BY MALINDA LO
Entrancing, empowering, and romantic, Ash is about the connection between life and love, and solitude and death, where transformation can come from even the deepest grief. This retelling of Cinderella stars a f/f romance.
DREAD NATION BY JUSTINA IRELAND
Jane McKeene was born two days before the dead began to walk the battlefields of Gettysburg and Chancellorsville—derailing the War Between the States and changing America forever. Dread Nation reimagines the Reconstruction era, but with zombies.
THE SOUND OF STARS BY ALECHIA DOW
Can a girl who risks her life for books and an alien who loves forbidden pop music work together to save humanity? Two years ago, a misunderstanding between the leaders of Earth and the invading Ilori resulted in the deaths of one-third of the world’s population. Now, the fate of humanity lies in the hands of teenage Ellie and an alien who should be her enemy, but she can’t bring herself to hate.
WE DIDN’T ASK FOR THIS BY ALI ALSAID
We Didn’t Ask for This by Adi Alsaid is a fierce and intelligent story that discusses climate change and the power teenagers have to change the world along with teen angst, emotions and dramatics. Sasha really loved this book and you can find her review here!
THE LOVE AND LIES OF RUKHSANA ALI BY SABINA KHAN
This gorgeous, yet heart-breaking book follows Rukhsana as she is whisked off to Bangladesh after her parents see her kissing her girlfriend. With unlikely friendships and a gut-wrenching plot, this is the perfect book for anyone who loves a good f/f romance, with some amazing representation too!
THE GRIEF KEEPER BY ALEXANDRA VILLASANTE
One of Amber’s all time favourites, this book is about Marisol, who will do anything to keep her and her sister in America after they immigrate to escape danger in their home town. Marisol becomes a keeper of someone else’s grief as a way of staying in America, and although she’s not meant to meet the girl who’s heartbreak she has to now handle, they form a very strong bond ;))))
RUN REBEL BY MANJEET MANN
When Amber runs, it’s the only time she feels completely free – far away from her claustrophobic home life. Her father wants her to be a dutiful daughter, waiting for an arranged marriage like her sister Ruby. Running is a quiet rebellion. But Amber wants so much more – and she’s ready to fight for it. It’s time for a revolution.
WE SET THE DARK ON FIRE BY TEHLOR KAY MEJIA
Dani and Carmen didn’t always hate each other, but they definitely do now, and when they end up married to the same husband, they must put their differences aside to help bring equality to their town. This book is such a gorgeous enemies-to-lovers, and the second book was just recently released so you can read the whole series at once!
I HOPE YOU GET THIS MESSAGE BY FARAH NAZ RISHI
A beautiful story about 3 teens who must face their truths and wrong doings with only 7 days left before the Earth might end. Jesse, Cate, and Adeem’s paths collide even as their worlds are pulled apart and they each have separate missions they hope to complete before their time is up.
DARIUS THE GREAT IS NOT OKAY BY ADIB KHORRAM
Darius doesn’t think he’ll ever be enough, in America or in Iran. Darius Kellner speaks better Klingon than Farsi, and he knows more about Hobbit social cues than Persian ones. He’s about to take his first-ever trip to Iran, and it’s pretty overwhelming–especially when he’s also dealing with clinical depression, a disapproving dad, and a chronically anemic social life.
ARISTOTLE AND DANTE DISCOVER THE SECRETS OF THE UNIVERSE BY BENJAMIN ALIRE SAENZ
Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime.
SHATTER THE SKY BY REBECCA KIM WELLS
Raised among the ruins of a conquered mountain nation, Maren dreams only of sharing a quiet life with her girlfriend Kaia—until the day Kaia is abducted by the Aurati, prophetic agents of the emperor, and forced to join their ranks. Desperate to save her, Maren hatches a plan to steal one of the emperor’s coveted dragons and storm the Aurati stronghold.
NOT YOUR SIDEKICK BY C.B. LEE
Welcome to Andover… where superpowers are common, but internships are complicated. Just ask high school nobody, Jessica Tran. Despite her heroic lineage, Jess is resigned to a life without superpowers and is merely looking to beef-up her college applications when she stumbles upon the perfect (paid!) internship—only it turns out to be for the town’s most heinous supervillain.
THE STARS AND THE BLACKNESS BETWEEN THEM BY JUNAUDA PETRUS
Mabel quickly falls hard for the new girl, Audre and is determined to take care of her as she tries to navigate an American high school. But their romance takes a turn when test results reveal exactly why Mabel has been feeling low-key sick all summer and suddenly it’s Audre who is caring for Mabel as she faces a deeply uncertain future.
THE BLACK FLAMINGO BY DEAN ATTA
Fiercely told, this is a timely coming-of-age story, told in verse about the journey to self-acceptance. A boy comes to terms with his identity as a mixed-race gay teen – then at university he finds his wings as a drag artist, The Black Flamingo. A bold story about the power of embracing your uniqueness. Sometimes, we need to take charge, to stand up wearing pink feathers – to show ourselves to the world in bold colour.
THE WEIGHT OF THE STARS BY K. ANCRUM
Every night without fail, Alexandria waits to catch radio signals from her mother who is on a one-way trip to the edge of the solar system. But when she breaks her arm in a horrific accident and her world collides with Ryann’s, it’s up to Ryann to make sure she can still get onto the roof to hear from her mother every day.
LIKE A LOVE STORY BY ABDI NAZEMIAN
When Reza moves to the city, Judy quickly becomes his best friend, and they start dating. But Reza is gay, as is Judy’s best friend Art, and as Reza and Art grow closer, Reza struggles to find a way out of his deception that won’t break Judy’s heart–and destroy the most meaningful friendship he’s ever known.
LET’S TALK ABOUT LOVE BY CLAIRE KANN
Alice had her whole summer planned. Non-stop all-you-can-eat buffets while marathoning her favorite TV shows, with the smallest dash of adulting–working at the library to pay her share of the rent. The only thing missing from her perfect plan? Her girlfriend, who ended things when Alice confessed she’s asexual. Alice thinks she’s done with dating, but then Alice meets Takumi and she can’t stop thinking about him or the rom com-grade romance feels she did not ask for.
SOFT ON SOFT BY MINA WAHEED
Contemporary romance where one homebody and one extrovert make one hell of a love story. Soft on Soft is a character-driven without an intense plot or conflict! For fans of something low on the angst and high on the fluff.
EVERYTHING LEADS TO YOU BY NINA LACOUR
A gorgeous novel about a girl who designs film sets who ends up finding a letter from a deceased hollywood star. She then makes it her mission to deliver the letter but finds out that the recipient is also deceased, and this is where she meets Emi, who know’s nothing about her hollywood connection and loves to act 🙂
PS: If we’re incorrect, and one of these authors is not part of the LGBTQ+ community, we apologise! There are many POC authors who have great LGBTQ+ representation in their books, but it isn’t clear whether they themselves are LGBTQ+. We didn’t want to invade any author’s privacy by searching too much about their sexuality or gender identity, so we just hope you don’t mind.
2 thoughts on “Books by Queer Authors of Colour!”
There are so many awesome books on this list!! my tbr is overflowing oops I’ve only read the love and lies of rukhsana Ali and run rebel but both were so amazing! I definitely need to check out these!
OMG same, i haven’t read many of these and my tbr is SO FULL! I really want to read those two actually! And I’d definitely recommend Clap When You Land if you liked those two xxx