LGBT Teen Novels Week - 27th Feb to 4th March 2012

Hi book lovers,

For LGBT History Month, I am organising a LGBT Teen Novels Week where I will review a few books with some guest reviews and there will also be a guest post by James Dawson, author of Hollow Pike.

Our societies take for a given that everyone is born either male or female and that a male is attracted to a female and vice versa. Not everyone agrees, but that's roughly how most of the societies work.

Now there is a whole lot of people in the world who just don't fit in any of these categories. They don't relate to any gender, or they're born in the wrong one, or they're against what everyone thinks their gender is. Then some are not attracted to the opposite sex, they're attracted to their own, to both or even to none. The whole LGBT movement is not a bunch of stereotypical gay and lesbians being fabulous and wanting to get married. It's a whole bunch of people who do not feel male, female or heterosexual and think they are not any less of a human being for being so. There are so many different people that you could add the entire alphabet after LGBT and start over again and you wouldn't have put a label onto everyone. Identity, gender and sexuality are at the heart of the debate and the more you talk about it, the more you realise that the world isn't black and white but every shade of the rainbow (yes, I just made that pun).

When you haven't gone through this identity or sexuality crisis, it is hard to even wrap your head around the idea. But reading about it and talking about it helps, especially the people who feel left out from all main media. This is even more important for teenagers to read about this because they already go through so many emotions during their adolescence and when they feel things to which they can't put a name on or find an explanation, it is even harder to cope with it. How can you feel ok if you are born a girl but feel like a boy inside and all you can see around you and in the media are people who are specifically male or female and who mainly see transgender people as unnatural? Raising awareness on these identity and sexuality issues is fundamental, especially to teenagers who might not be able to talk freely about this at home or at school because of social and peer pressure.

The good thing about books is that you can read someone else's experience and make it your own. You can read about a person coming to terms with his or her homosexuality and realise that maybe, what you are feeling on the inside, is not something weird and there may be other people who are feeling it too. I only started reading lesbian novels when I had already pretty much figured out that whatever it was that was wrong with me was not a genetic disease or anything wrong at all but a simple attraction to the same sex and I wish there was something, anything, in my life (home, school, media, friends...) which could have helped. Talking about having more LGBT-themed books published and talked about in the media is not some kind of affirmative action where we need a "queer quota" in each story, it is only a willingness to want reality to be described how it actually is, full of beauty and diversity.

You can visit the official website of LGBT History Month [here] - they have some great articles/posts on there and a great number of events being organised, so do go and have a look!

You can also re-visit my Lesbian Teen Novels Week [here] if you are so inclined!

Thank you to the lovely Nina from Death Books and Tea who designed this brilliant logo for the week!


The Week:

Monday - Intro post which is what you are reading ;)

Tuesday - Guest Post by Hollow Pike author, James Dawson, about queer characters in books

Wednesday - Review of Dare, Truth or Promise by Paula Boock

Thursday - Guest review by Kirsty at The Overflowing Library of Becoming Nancy by Terry Ronald

FridayReview of How Beautiful the Ordinary (short stories) by Beth over at Thoughts from the Hearthfire

Saturday - Guest review by Lauren at I Was A Teenage Book Geek of Beyond Evie by Rebecca Burton

SundayReview of Almost Perfect by Brian Katcher


Here are a few links for book recommendations:

I have also read this weekend a fantastic article about people talking about being asexual on the Guardian [link here]

If you have any more links to be added, please email/tweet me and I'll add them!

I hope you'll enjoy the week!

Caroline x


  1. What a great line-up
    Honestly the LGBT books I have read I have struggled with I didnt like he narrative voice in Sugar Rush or so I am really interested to here about different books and how they can benefit the teens in the library

  2. I'm really looking forward to this week, I think it's such an important thing to be talking about so I'm really looking forward to all of the posts.

  3. I agree - fantastic post, and I'm really looking forward to all the others too.

  4. Can't wait! I'd never have discovered Julie Anne Peters if it weren't for you.

  5. What a great event! Have you heard of the site Diversify Your Reading? ( We promote diversity in reading by compiling lists of book reviews by authors of diverse backgrounds and nationalities, and are always looking for more LGBT books to list. We don't have too many YA books listed yet, so it would be really great to add some of these to our list. If you're interested in listing some of your own reviews, please check it out.
    Good luck with the event!

  6. Brilliant post Caroline! I loved the week last year and I can't wait to read more this Week!