It's always Pride Month if you're queer, so June may be over, but we still have oodles of books we're excited to grab this year — and especially this month!
Let's start with one of our personal favourite indie authors, Hayley Anderton, whose sapphic YA Beauty & the Beast retelling, A Thorn Among Roses, brings us some magic on the 1st of July.
At seventeen, Alana single-handedly defeated the biggest army that Thornwood had ever seen. By sunrise the very next day, she'd been shunned by her own people, forced to become a recluse and reside in the castle where she was supposed to rule over them. Now, with both her parents gone, she suffers alone, bearing a curse bestowed upon her by the village witch, making her resentful heart as twisted as a vine.
But when she finds trespassers on her land, she seizes an opportunity to break the curse from a travelling sorceress. Alana was never looking for company, and she has little faith that the sorceress can change her fate, but years of loneliness have left her craving connection, and unfamiliar emotions begin to surface in the presence of her new companion.
But love isn't the only thing on her mind. The kingdom is plagued with whispers of dark forces creeping their way across Thornwood's borders. Jaded by her past, can Alana save her kingdom from evil once more...or will she become the monster her people believe her to be?
An enemies to lovers sapphic retelling of Beauty & the Beast which explores body image, self acceptance and the magic of love.
The 11th of July brings the much-anticipated fantasy Digging for Heaven by our Pride-iversary author Jenna Jarvis. Don't forget to read our interview with Jenna here!
The lands of Jeenobi and Aelshia are separated by hundreds of miles of dangerous desert, and antithetical views on dragons. Now, under a tenuous new peace agreement, Jeenobi has agreed to ban dragon slaying within its borders.
As a visiting ambassador to Jeenobi and a rider to the dragon Loren, Litz expected to meet resistance to all she represents. She did not expect Kella, the kingdom’s most famous living dragon slayer, and she certainly didn’t expect to find her attractive.
When Litz is forced into extraditing Kella to Aelshia for trial, they’ll discover more monstrous things in the wilds of the desert than each other, and they’ll need to put aside their differences if they want to survive. The future of both nations may hang in the balance.
On July 13th, you can grab sweet M/M romance novella More to Love by Georgina Kiersten.
An Unexpected Love
For Jamir Cunnigham, a relationship is the last thing on his mind. After inheriting his grandparent’s bookstore, Jamir has been completely focused on running the business. And if he’s lonely, that was between him and the books. Yet, from the moment Emmy Park walked into his life, Jamir was immediately captivated by the plus-size Korean.
A Fresh Start
After his recent divorce, former Olympic Wrestler Emerson “Emmy” Park moved to Texas to get a fresh start. After taking a job as an assistant wrestling coach at a nearby university, he stumbles across Jamir’s bookstore. Emmy is instantly attracted to Jamir. Unfortunately, he is big and burly with a resting bitch face and thinks he has zero chance with the gorgeous Black man.
However, when a sudden encounter shows them how good they can be together. Is the simmering attraction between them enough for them to see past their differences and finally give in to their desires?
More To Love is a short and sweet m/m romance book featuring bookstores, coffee shops, plus-size main characters, bisexual couples, sapphic side characters, autumn feels, and Black/Asian romances.
Prefer poetry to prose? DJ Dune releases Emotional Poetry Collection Vol. 1 on the 14th of July.
Welcome to something new!
In the first UDI IRL entry from DJ Dune, they present twenty-seven of their emotionally-driven poems. Ranging from a wide variety of topics, step just a little bit into their mindset, as they showcase themselves through the power of poetry in their first Emotional Poetry Collection.
On the 18th, head to the queer universe of Clover Hill with Kitten Caboodle by Candace Harper.
Daphne wants three to build her solo business as a wedding planner, stay in her home without breaking the bank, and figure out the next steps in her life. Taking a housemate will help with at least one of those. Enter Cade, golden retriever gym bro who needs a place to stay in Clover Hill while he helps to open a new chiropractor’s clinic. He doesn’t mind being far from home, and he might be the answer to all of Daphne’s problems. Neither of them are looking for romance, but when an instant attraction sparks between them, who are they to turn away? Kitten Caboodle is a medium heat, low angst trans m/cis f small town contemporary romance novella. It takes place in the shared world of Clover Hill, so it can be read as part of the series or as a standalone.
Pre-order M/M sports romance Driven to Protect by Renée Dahlia, out 20th of July — all proceeds will go to the Marsha P. Johnson Institute in support of the trans community.
Paid to protect him … But at what cost?
Paulo's father's money bought him a seat in a Series One car, and now he needs to prove himself. Unfortunately, after a spectacular crash he finds it hard not to believe all the bad press about him. He escapes hospital to go to a dodgy bar, thinking a secret hook-up might get this all out of his system. Then he meets Cohen.
Working as a security guard in a run-down gay bar as a trans man has meant Cohen has seen a lot of things. But none as thrilling as when rich and famous Paulo offers him a new job. He can take the money and protect his boss without getting emotionally involved. Can’t he?
As the racing season progresses, they have everything to prove. Paulo needs to be the driver he knows he can be, and Cohen needs to show that he can protect the man he’s falling in love with.
You can also expect a cover reveal, title reveal, and release from L E Scott for the sequel to Nightwalker later in the month, so keep a lookout!