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Rachel & Ivy's Pride Month Book Recommendations

We have lots of Pride content to post this month, but we thought we'd start by recommending some LGBTQ+ books that we have read and love to shout about whenever the opportunity arises! Most of these stories are sapphic, because we are nothing if not stereotypes, but you can also find more queer representation included afterwards. Happy reading! We hope you find your new favourite book somewhere in this list.


Sapphic Stories

A Sweet Sting of Salt by Rose Sutherland

Representation? Sapphic romance

Why we loved it? This historical, folklore-inspired tale takes place in rural Nova Scotia and explores the lengths a smitten midwife will go to to save her lover and her child from an unhappy marriage. This love story travels beyond the barriers of language and the ordinary to weave a gothic, wintry, inspiring novel.

The Dorset Crime series by Rachel McLean

Representation? Later-in-life lesbians

Why we loved it? This detective/thriller series follows a feisty female detective with dry humour, unused to the rural small-town way of life. It includes a sapphic romance with characters over fifty.

The Bright Falls series by Ashley Herring Blake

Representation? Bi/pan and lesbian women

Why we loved it? This feel-good romance trilogy focuses on three diverse standalone love stories, including an exploration of family dynamics and coming out later in life. The ultimate cosy, hilarious tales for when you're feeling blue!

Rum, Whisky, Faeries, & Other Spirits by T.A. Hall

Representation? Sapphic romance featuring a nonbinary MC

Why we loved it? T.A. Hall knows how to weave cosy fantasy with romance in the same way Rebecca Thorne does, but this story has the added twist of character introspection and fighting your own demons. Myra is a unique, relatable MC who is seemingly an expert in mixology. Putting her with an unpredictable witch makes for a distinctly enjoyable cocktail!

A Tale of Two Florists by Brenna Bailey

Representation? Sapphics in their 70s

Why we loved it? Set in a cosy, Stars Hollow-esque town, this romance follows two feuding older women battling for the spot of the most popular florists in town. Seeing them get petty to save their businesses was truly hilarious, and their love story grows into a sweet tale that gives us all hope that love (and lesbians) will follow us into old age.

On Demon Wrangling and Interpersonal Relationships Between Weary Immortals by Rebecca Crunden

Representation? Sapphics

Why we loved it? This is a delicious, short story depicting sapphic, demon-hunting immortals.

If Tomorrow Doesn't Come by Jen St. Jude

Representation? Lesbians and suicidal MC

Why we loved it? This YA novel is a heartwarming story in which two best friends are reunited as an asteroid plummets towards Earth. Not knowing if they'll make it out alive leaves them scrambling to survive their last few days together. St. Jude explores what it means to not want to live anymore, and how that can change when your days may be numbered, while also highlighting the conflict between religion and queerness, and general sapphic pining between best friends who seem to be on different paths.

Read Between the Lines by Rachel Lacey

Representation? Sapphic romance

Why we loved it? A case of hidden identity and a love of books drives this sapphic romance. With a conflict perfect for the story and a cosy book store setting, you'll be sure to fall in love with both heroines in this sweet tale.

Hotshot by Clare Lydon

Representation? Sapphic/lesbian romance

Why we loved it? After finishing Ted Lasso, we needed more football - and we needed it queer. Lydon delivers with this fun, romantic novel focused on the women's league, with a powerful, talented player and her lifestyle coach.

A Thorn Among Roses by Hayley Anderton

Representation? Sapphic romance

Why we loved it? This dark retelling of Beauty & the Beast focuses on magic and isolation. Anderton weaves a beautiful romance within a thorn-filled world.

Bitterthorn by Kat Dunn

Representation? Sapphic romance

Why we loved it? Also a Beauty & the Beast retelling, Bitterthorn is a historical, gothic tale filled with melancholy and loneliness. As the MC uncovers the mystery behind the Witch and her castle, she finds herself yearning for love after a lifetime without it.

Love Bites by Ry Herman

Representation? Sapphic romance

Why we loved it? Two word: sapphic vampires. If you're a fan of Casey McQuiston's writing style but you're looking for something a little different, Herman delivers. While the character keeps her secret from her new lover, she faces her own inner turmoil from past relationships. With hilarious side characters and a surprise twist, this book explores more than just vampirism; it explores being human, damaged, afraid, and unwell.

A Dowry of Blood by S.T. Gibson

Representation? Sapphic, polyam relationship

Why we loved it? This Dracula retelling focuses on the wives who became victim to Bram Stoker's renowned vampire. With a dark tale that travels through the past, gothic seduction, and an exploration of abuse, Dowry is filled with rich lore, but what blew us away most was Gibson's gorgeous prose, told through diary entries.

The Flourishing by Merlina Garance

Representation? Sapphic: lesbian and bi/pan, plus PTSD

Why we loved it? It is no secret that Rach has claimed Andy as her book girlfriend, but she has some competition as more readers fall in love with Garance's characters and words. This romance novel follows a crime/thriller case, in which a detective falls for a missing man's wife while trying to track him down. It will keep you on the edge of your seat until the bittersweet end.

The Santa Pageant by Lillian Barry

Representation? Lesbian and nonbinary MCs, PTSD, ADHD

Why we loved it? In short, it's hilarious! When estranged friends collide once more while trying to win the role of Santa at the local shopping mall, fireworks explode and things go a little awry. This second chance romance is full of twinkly lights and good humour, but also includes deeper themes, such as sense of belonging and recovery after an unhealthy relationship. This is a festive must-read!

This Gilded Abyss by Rebecca Thorne

Representation? Sapphic

Why we loved it? This sci-fi, Arcane-esque tale is set in a submarine and features sapphic exes to lovers as well as the bodyguard trope, and Thorne's prose is immersive, fantastical, and easy to get lost in, and includes all of the hurt/comfort vibes we adore.

Written in the Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur

Representation? Lesbian and bi/pan sapphic romance

Why we loved it? Sunshine meets grump in this horoscope-inspired sapphic romance full of feel-good vibes and fake-dating goodness. Bellefleur is a must-read for anyone new to the sapphic genre.

A Lesson in Vengeance by Victoria Lee

Representation? Sapphic

Why we loved it? Dark academia meets thrilling mystery in this stunning novel. Ivy describes it as one of the most beautiful things she's ever read, with gorgeous prose and a storyline guaranteed to hook you in.

When Love Barges In by Bryony Rosehurst

Representation? Sapphic lesbian x bi/pan romance

Why Ivy loved it? Mostly because Rachel wrote it. But also because it was adorable and made her cry, and that's how you know she loved this cosy romance novella!

More Queer Representation

Unbridled Damsel by Stella Donato

Representation? First generation Latine and queer experiences

Why we loved it? This poetry sheds light on what it's like to grow up and live as a first generation Latine person facing conflict both within and outside of the family. It also magnifies the queer experience, and how these two identities intersect. Donato's words are raw and full of impact.

The Enlil & Aris series by Rebecca Crunden

Representation? Achillean romance

Why we loved it? Crunden is an expert at crafting short stories. This cosy fantasy series offers a gorgeous, timeless MM romance as well as a sympathetic villain and hilariously unique side characters of the supernatural variety.

Fever Dreams by Bethany Russo

Representation? Nonbinary/gender non-conforming MC

Why we loved it? This collection of short horror stories will leave you wary of your next zoo trip! Russo weaves grief, mental illness, and human introspection into the paranormal in these spine-tingling tales.

Godkiller by Hannah Kaner

Representation? Pan/bi FMC and disability, including a prosthetic limb

Why we loved it? Rachel loves women who belch. Need we say more? Okay, we will. Kaner is an expert in fantasy worldbuilding, and her talents don't stop there. With three distinct, lovable characters and a small god coming together to follow their own quests, this story is one easy to get lost in. Plus, the sapphic MC wields a sword.

Vivi Conway and the Sword of Legend by Lizzie Huxley-Jones

Representation? Middle grade autistic MC, nonbinary side character, and a side character with a limb difference

Why we loved it? We're a firm believer that kidlit needs to keep growing more diversified, and this novel is a perfect example of why. Vivi explores her life with autism while becoming wrapped up in a Welsh mythology-inspired quest and meeting a group of new friends.

Problematic by Lou Willingham

Representation? Trans rage

Why we loved it? This collection of poetry displays all the reasons why trans lives are important and should be cherished. Willingham explores the rage that comes with living in a society filled with hatred and transphobia, with flickers of hope woven throughout. An authentic, emotional work that deserves to be read widely in order to better understand trans hope and pain.

Paris at Nightfall by Merlina Garance

Representation: Achillean

Why we loved it: Two men come together in a hostile, heavily guarded Paris and quickly transition from fighting for resources to sharing them in this dystopian romance novellette. Garance has a breathtaking way with words that transcends setting and time, and her ability to convey the most intimate of moments is something to be envied.


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