With a new month comes a new batch of exciting queer books to get excited about, so let's celebrate the month of Valentine's with some LGBT love!
To kick off Valentine's Day the right way, be sure to keep an eye out for a young adult gay romance novel with trans rep: Always the Almost by Edward Underhill.
A trans pianist makes a New Year's resolution on a frozen Wisconsin night to win regionals and win back his ex, but a new boy complicates things in Edward Underhill's heartfelt debut YA rom-dram, Always the Almost.
Sixteen-year-old trans boy Miles Jacobson has two New Year’s resolutions: 1) win back his ex-boyfriend (and star of the football team) Shane McIntyre, and 2) finally beat his slimy arch-nemesis at the Midwest’s biggest classical piano competition. But that’s not going to be so easy. For one thing, Shane broke up with Miles two weeks after Miles came out as trans, and now Shane’s stubbornly ignoring him, even when they literally bump into each other. Plus, Miles’ new, slightly terrifying piano teacher keeps telling him that he’s playing like he “doesn’t know who he is”—whatever that means.
Then Miles meets the new boy in town, Eric Mendez, a proudly queer cartoonist from Seattle who asks his pronouns, cares about art as much as he does—and makes his stomach flutter. Not what he needs to be focusing on right now. But after Eric and Miles pretend to date so they can score an invite to a couples-only Valentine’s party, the ruse turns real with a kiss, which is also definitely not in the plan. If only Miles could figure out why Eric likes him so much. After all, it's not like he’s cool or confident or comfortable in his own skin. He’s not even good enough at piano to get his fellow competitors to respect him, especially now, as Miles. Nothing’s ever been as easy for him as for other people—other boys. He’s only ever been almost enough.
So why, when he’s with Eric, does it feel like the only person he’s ever really not been enough for...is himself?
Also out on February 14th, Elle Diaz is publishing How That Makes you Feel.
Therapist Camila Moore isn’t the girl she used to be. Divorced, correctly diagnosed, and (mostly) over her disastrous rebound, she’s happier than ever. She’s saying yes to MMA classes and meditation, and no to booze and drama. She’ll be damned if she gets her big feelings wrapped up in a man — even a gorgeous, funny man like Zach Hoult, the jeweler she meets at the arts festival. Their flirtatious transaction leads to a karaoke invite, innuendo over ice cream, and a scorching goodnight kiss that leaves them wanting more.
But Zach shouldn’t want more. He’d left Pittsburgh behind, until his estranged mother’s death cut his international travels short and forced him back to the city that broke his heart. He just has to get his sister to graduation and sell the family jewelry store, and he’ll finally be free to do … well, he’s not sure yet. But his sexy, smart new friend with benefits is a welcome distraction from making plans.
As Zach entices Camila out of her careful routines, and Camila cracks open Zach’s guarded heart, their summer fling turns into something deeper. Separately, falling in love always brought out the worst in them, but maybe people can change. Can two works in progress make it work? Or will passion this intense burn them both?
Not feeling the love? Why not jump into a zombie apocalypse instead! Hayley Anderton and Laura Swift's Outlast releases on February 17th. This is the fifth book in their YA series of horror novellas named Apocalypse, and features a diverse cast of teen characters with some budding queer relationships!
Reality has hit hard for the group at the farm. Having lost one of their own, survival seems even further out of reach. But with Christmas approaching, can they make the most of a bad situation?
Back at the school, Gus and Quinn are desperately trying to escape from under Ross' thumb. With a horde looming, it seems like their time might be up.
And they're not the only ones with questionable leadership. With Alby running the show, Fletcher and his friends are becoming more and more wary of who they're up against.
Wars will be waged.
Lives will be on the line.
Let the apocalypse continue...
One of the books we're extremely excited to get our hands on is A Pirate's Life for Tea by Rebecca Thorne coming out on February 23rd. This cosy fantasy is the sequel to Can't Spell Treason without Tea, for which you can read our review!
While searching for stolen dragon eggs, newly engaged couple Kianthe and Reyna find themselves smack-dab in the middle of a swashbuckling love story.
On one side is Serina, a failed farmer turned river pirate. Her booty? Wheat, grains, and the occasional jar of imported tea leaves. It's quite the embarrassment to Diarn Arlon, the powerful lord of the Nacean River, and he'll conscript anyone to bring her to justice. Especially Kianthe, the elemental mage who just crashed his party, and her somewhat-scary fiancée.
Begrudgingly, the couple joins forces with Bobbie, one of Arlon's constables--who happens to be Serina's childhood friend. Bobbie is determined to capture the pirate before anyone else, but it would be a lot easier if Serina didn't absolutely loathe her now.
As Kianthe and Reyna watch this relation-shipwreck from afar, it quickly becomes apparent that these disaster lesbians need all the help they can get. Luckily, matchmaking is Reyna's favorite past time. The dragon eggs may have to wait.
Bryony Rosehurst is publishing her romance novel Meet Me on St. Patrick's Day on February 24th so you have just enough time to get in the mood for all things lucky and green.
Quinn Hayes and Brennan O'Keeffe are nothing more than perfect strangers, but when their paths cross often over the years, always on St. Patrick’s Day, they realise that they seem to share a connection they’ve never been able to find with anyone else. Their personal lives are messy and chaotic and ever-changing in so many ways, but their link always remains the same — until a struggling, troubled Quinn makes a misguided mistake, and as a result, believes she has lost Brennan for good.
Years later, she unknowingly walks into his bar, and their lives become entangled once again, with Quinn landing a bartending job as Brennan's co-worker at Irish pub, O'Keeffe's. Will they finally get it right this time, or will Brennan's secrets and Quinn's shadowy past ruin everything once and for all?