The LGBT community is one that has had a bit of neglect in the book industry previously. I don't know if it's the fact it's a hard topic to talk about for some or if it's that straight people don't want to come across as patronising. But something shifted and there is some amazing books out that there look into the LGBT community without seeming patronising or unrealistic. There are loads out there but here are my top 5.
Simon Vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda - Seriously I am going to harp on about this book for a long time. It's one that I read in one sitting and have re-read a few times already. Simon is a boy that is gay, he knows he has been for a while but hasn't come out to anyone except Blue, a mystery boy at his school who he can tell anything to. Over the course of the book you learn all about both of their coming out stories, how the people around them react and how the community feels about them. You also find out who Blue is at the end and oh gosh it's such an adorable love story.
The Art of Being Normal - The first book I picked up to read this year and I absolutely loved it. The tale of two boys, one is desperate to be a girl though. It's amazing to see a genuinely love read about transgender teens. One where the characters stand out from other LGBT books and the story is written informatively and tactfully. Where you are rooting for them and their journey and want to thrust it in everyones hand at the end.
Two Boys Kissing - David Levithan writes amazing stuff for the LGBT community. It seems like every novel of his touches upon the subject Two boys join in to break a world record for the longest kiss. Whilst doing so the book touches on everything from coming out as a teen to the gay AIDS epidemic. Levithan writes in such a way that you don't want to turn the last page, you want to keep reading and immersing yourself in the world of the characters.
Alex As Well - Meet Alex and Alex. One is a boy and one is a girl. They are both the same person. Alex has grown up thinking she is a boy, but inside she is screaming to be a girl, yet doesn't know that she was born intersex. Her mum says it's all Alex's fault and her dad has walked out. But for once Alex is going to do what is right for her. This book is powerful. One that shook me to my core and made me want to reach through the pages and hug Alex. It reminded me that no matter what anyone else said you need to live life for you.
Will Grayson, Will Grayson - What do you get when you mix a king of LGBT YA and a king of YA? Well this book. Two boys, both names Will Grayson meet in an unexpected place. Apart from their names they are poles apart from each other, but with a little help from Tiny Cooper a surprising friendship appears. This is a wonderful LGBT book that revolves around teens trying to work out who they are and forge a place for themselves in the world.
Other notable books:
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
I'll Give You The Sun
Everything Leads To You