Rainbow Book List

New Rainbow List Suggestions

Posted by: Naomi Gonzales on: March 2, 2017

Thanks to our Rainbow List followers on this website and Twitter for these 2018 List suggestions  submitted in February, 2017:

Siera Maley.  Colorblind. March 2, 2016. 9781508403043. Age 14-18

Skrutskie, Emily. The Abyss Surrounds Us. Feb. 8, 2016. $11.99. 9780738746913. Age 14 & up

Gough, Erin. Get It Together, Delilah. April 4, 2017.   $16.99 9781452151878.  Age 14 & up

Silvera, Adam. History Is All You Left Me. Jan. 17, 2017. $18.99.  9781616956929. Age 14& up

Lee, CB. Not Your Sidekick. Sept. 8, 2016. 9781945053030. Age 14-18

Coulthurst , Audrey. Of Fire and Stars. Nov. 22, 2016. $17.99 9780062433251. Age14 & up

Roehrig, Caleb. Last Seen Leaving. Oct. 4, 2016. $17.99. 9781250085634. Age 14-18

Smith, Lindsay. A Darkly Beating Heart. Oct. 25, 2016. $17.99 9781626720442. Age 14-18

2018 Rainbow Book List Committee

Posted by: Naomi Gonzales on: February 8, 2017

We’re kicking off the new cycle for the Rainbow Book List this week with our first meeting. The new committee roster is below. Kathleen Breitenbach is serving as admin and has already sent out review copy requests to publishers. I just received my first title yesterday in the mail.  We tweeted the link to the suggestions form on the committee twitter account and already have title suggestions coming in for the new cycle.  Below is a list of the new committee members.  Let us hear from you (via the contact link) if you have any questions and please send in title suggestions anytime.
Jeffrey Sowder
Roster
Mr. Jeffrey Sowder (Chair, February 1, 2017, to January 31, 2018)
Dr. Robert Bittner (Member, February 1, 2017, to January 31, 2018)
Mr. Alec Brandon Chunn (Member, February 1, 2017, to January 31, 2018)
Mrs. Kristie Escobar (Member, February 1, 2017, to January 31, 2018)
Kelly A. Jones (Member, February 1, 2017, to January 31, 2018)
Ms. Alana Phelan (Member, February 1, 2017, to January 31, 2018)
Ms. Catherine C. Pontoriero (Member, February 1, 2017, to January 31, 2018)
Ms. Lynne Rhys (Member, February 1, 2017, to January 31, 2018)
Kristin Lahurd (Staff Liaison, February 1, 2017, to January 31, 2019)

2017 Rainbow Book List

Posted by: marygendavies on: January 25, 2017

2017 Rainbow Book List

The Rainbow Book List Committee proudly announces the 2017 Rainbow Book List.  The Rainbow Book List is a bibliography of books with significant gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or queer/questioning content, which are aimed at youth, birth through age 18.  The list is intended to aid youth in selecting high-quality books that were published between July 2015 and December 2016.  The list is also intended to aid as a collection development or readers’ advisory took for librarians serving children and young adults.

The committee members evaluated nearly 270 books from small, independent, and large publishers, and selected 47 books from 24 publishers for the 2017 Rainbow Book List.  The list also includes three additional books selected by the Stonewall Book Awards Committee as Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Award or Honor Books.

Starred titles indicate the Rainbow Book List’s Top Ten choices from the list, highlighting books of exceptional queer representation and literary merit to receive particular commendation.

The committee members would like to note the wider representation of the queer spectrum this year, including more asexual, gender queer, and biromantic characters as well as polyamorous relationships; however, there was a distinct drop in bisexual/pansexual representation. Middle grade fiction books, as well as high-quality non-fiction continue to be sparse.  Homelessness, which disproportionately affects LGBTQ+ youth, also continues to be a scarcely addressed, but sorely needed, subject.  While there has been an increase in diversity of characters as well as characters of various intersectionalities, the numbers still remain small on the whole.

Picture Books

Austrian, J.J. Worm Loves Worm. Written by J.J. Austrian; illus. by Mike Curato. 2016. 32p.  HarperCollins/Balzer & Bray, $17.99 (9780062386335). Age 3-8. Worm loves worm, and now they want to get married.  But which worm is the bride and which is the groom?  And does it matter?

Howe, James. Big Bob, Little Bob. Written by James Howe; , illus. by Laura Ellen Anderson. 2016. 32p. Candlewick, $15.99 (9780763644369). Ages 3-7. Three friends learn that gender doesn’t matter when it comes to playing with toys.

* Ismail, Yasmeen. I’m a Girl. 2016. 32p. Bloomsbury, $16.99 (9781619639751). Ages 3-7.  A spunky child is not afraid to be herself.

* Walton, Jessica. Introducing Teddy: A Gentle Story About Gender and Friendship. Written by Jessica Walton; illus. by  Dougal MacPherson. 2016. 32p. Bloomsbury, $16.99 (9781681192109). Ages 3-6. Errol’s teddy bear, Thomas, is sad until telling Errol the bear is actually a girl teddy bear and wants to be called Tilly. Errol and Tilly move the bow-tie from her identity as Thomas to a hair bow for Tilly. Errol only cares that the teddy bear is his friend.

Williams, Vera and Chris Raschka. Home at Last. 2016. 40p. HarperCollins/Greenwillow, $17.99 (9780061349737). Age 5-8.  Lester finds a loving home with Daddy Rich and Daddy Albert and their big, fluffy dog.

 

Middle Grade Fiction

Gephart, Donna. Lily and Dunkin. 2016. 340p. Random House Children’s/Delacorte, $16.99 (9780553536744). Grades 4-6. Lily is fighting to live openly as a girl, Dunkin is fighting his memories of his father, and they’re both fighting to save the tree in front of the library.

Hennessey, M. G. The Other Boy. 2016. 234p. HarperCollins, $16.99 (9780062427663). Grades 5-8. Twelve-year-old Shane loves baseball, drawing, and hanging out with his best friend until a transphobic school bully targets him. When Shane loses hope for finding his place in the world, some unexpected allies step forward.

Levy, Dana Alison. The Family Fletcher Takes Rock Island.  2016.  259p. Random House/Delacorte Books for Young Readers, $16.99 (9780553521306). Grades 3-5. The Fletcher family looks forward to their regular vacation at Rock Island: clam chowder, swimming, ice cream, and most of all the lighthouse. But when they find the lighthouse fenced off when they arrive, it starts a summer unlike all the rest.

Riordan, Rick. The Hidden Oracle. 2016. 376p. Disney, $19.99 (9781484732748). Grades 5-8. Apollo’s in trouble with Zeus and has been banished to Earth as a mortal with none of his godly powers, so he makes his way to Camp Half-Blood before finding out about an all-new threat to Camp Half-Blood and the world.

Riordan, Rick. Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Hammer of Thor, 2016. 471.  Disney, $19.99 (978-1423160922). Grades 5-8. Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s Award Book.  In Magnus’s second adventure, Rick Riordan introduces readers to Alex Fierro, a gender fluid teen who has “startling eyes, an impressive sweater-vest, and a tendency to hit people” (54). Alex is a hero and represents the expansive possibilities of gender for future generations.

 

Middle Grade Non-Fiction

Stevenson, Robin. Pride: Celebrating Diversity and Community. 2016. 119p. Orca Books,  $24.95 (9781459809932). Grades 4-8. Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s Honor Book.  A visually stunning history and celebration of pride.

 

Young Adult Fiction

Brothers, Meagan. Weird Girl and What’s His Name. 2015. 320p. Three Rooms Press, $16.95 (9781941110270). Grades 9+. Lula and Rory have two things in common: their love for X-Files and the fact they don’t fit in in their small town of Hawthorne, North Carolina. They share everything with one another, until Lula finds out Rory has a few secrets hidden up his sleeve, making Lula reconsider her sexuality and their friendship.

Brown, Jaye Robin. Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit. 2016. 419p. HarperCollins/HarperTeen, $17.99 (9780062270986) Grades 10+.  When out and proud Jo is forced to move to small-town Georgia, she grants her father’s request to protect his ministry and new marriage by returning to the closet. But who will she meet in the closet?

* Cassidy, Yvonne. How Many Letters are in Goodbye? 2016. 427p. North Star Editions/Flux, $11.99 (9780738747453). Grades 9+. Rhea lost her mother 14 years ago, but is still saying goodbye with letters describing her struggles coming to terms with her sexuality, gaining and losing love, and experiencing homelessness in NYC.

Cherry, Allison. Look Both Ways. 2016. 296p. Random House/Delacorte, $17.99 (9780553511864). Grades 9+. Brooklyn finds herself falling into a romance with her roommate Zoe at acting camp, and she questions her identity and what she really wants.

Clark, Kristin Elizabeth. Jess, Chunk, and the Road Trip to Infinity. 2016. 256p. Macmillan/Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $17.99 (9780374380069). Grades 9+. After starting her transition, Jess takes her best friend Chuck across the country to come out to her dad, but spends the trip learning what it means to be a good friend.

Curtis, Simon. Boy Robot. 2016. 415p. Simon & Schuster/Simon Pulse, $17.99 (9781481459297). Grade 9+. On the run in a dystopian society that wants him dead, Isaak finds refuge in an underground network of robots and humans.

Downham, Jenny. Unbecoming. 2016. 375p. Scholastic/David Fickling Books, $17.99 (9780545907170). Grades 9+.  Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s Honor Book.  As if kissing her best friend and then being shunned by all her school mates isn’t bad enough, now the grandmother Katie didn’t know existed is living with them.  But revelations of her mother’s and grandmother’s histories soon offer insights into her own life that she couldn’t have predicted.

Federle, Tim. The Great American Whatever. 2016. 278p. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (9781481404099). Grades 9+.  After spending 6 months alone grieving over the loss of his sister, Quinn’s best friend forces him out to a party where he meets and falls for the older and more experienced Amir.

Garvin, Jeff. Symptoms of Being Human. 2016. 335p. HarperCollins/Balzar + Bray, $17.99 (9780062382863). Grades 9+. Is Riley Cavanaugh a boy or a girl? The answer is yes.  In this ground-breaking exploration of what it’s like to be a gender fluid teen, Riley grapples with self-identity, balancing that identity with family expectations, and standing up to bullies.

Girard, M.E. Girl Mans Up. 2016. 373p. HarperCollins/HarperCollins Children’s Books, $17.99 (9780062404176). Grades 9+. Between her parent’s need for her to wear dresses and her best friend’s need for her to be one of the guys, Pen slowly loses herself. Will she man up?

* Hutchinson, Shaun David. We Are the Ants. 2016. 451p. Simon & Schuster/Simon Pulse, $17.99 (9781481449632). Grades 9+. Henry has the chance to destroy the world; should he press the button?

Jaffe, Sara. Dryland. 2015. 216p. Tin House Books, $14.95 (9781941040133). Grade 9+.  Floating through life is something Julie excels at, until Alexis unexpectedly invites her to join the swim team.  Is the invitation more than just a spot on the team?

Levithan, David, and Nina LaCour. You Know Me Well. 2016. 250p. Macmillan/St. Martin’s/Griffin, $18.99 (9781250098641). Grades 9+. Mark’s boyfriend ditches him to flirt with older guys, and Kate runs away from meeting the girl of her dreams. Instead of finding themselves alone, they find each other for the kick off of San Francisco’s Pride Week.

Logan, Kenneth. True Letters from a Fictional Life. 2016. 323p. HarperCollins Children’s Books/HarperTeen, $17.99 (9780062380258). Grades 9+. The real James Liddell is hidden inside his desk. His friends see his girlfriend, athleticism, and confidence as givens, but the letters inside tell another story.

Mason, Jane B. Without Annette. 2016. 325p. Scholastic, $18.99 (9780545819954). Grades 9+. Josie and her girlfriend Annette escape Annette’s alcoholic mother and their small town, but suddenly closeted and excluded from Annette’s new circle, the private boarding school in Connecticut is not what Josie thought it would be.

* McGuire, Seanan. Every Heart a Doorway. 2016. 173p. Macmillan/St. Martin’s Press/Tom Doherty Associates, $17.99 (9780765385505). Grades 9+. Nancy found a home for herself serving the Lord of the Dead in his Underworld, but after being cast out, she finds a group of fellow magical travelers at Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children.

* McLemore, Anna-Marie. When the Moon Was Ours. 2016. 273p. Macmillan/St. Martin’s/Griffin/Thomas Dunne, $18.99 (9781250058669). Grades 9+. Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s Honor Book. A girl born of a water tower and a boy who hangs moons risk everything for love in this magical fairy tale.

Moskowitz, Hannah, and Kat Helgeson. Gena/Finn. 2016. 287p. Chronicle Books, $17.99 (9781452138398). Grades 9+. Gena and Finn find each other online through tv fandom. As their friendship develops, neither one expects the disaster that waits around the corner.

* Nowlin, Laura. This Song Is (Not) for You. 2016. 230p. Sourcebooks/Sourcebooks Fire, $9.99 (9781492602903). Grades 8+. Bandmates Sam and Ramona are in love with each other, but afraid to admit it. When Tom, who has always had to defend his asexuality to others, makes their duo a trio, there is enough love for everyone.

Redgate, Riley. Seven Ways We Lie. 2016. 343p. Abrams/Harry N. Abrams, $17.95 (9781419719448). Grades 9+. One scandal. Seven students. As they bury their secrets and uncover others’, friendships and unexpected loves are formed and lost.

Rivera, Gabby. Juliet Takes a Breath. 2016. 266p. Riverdale Ave. Books, $19.99 (9781626012516).  Grades 10+. Juliet, a kick-ass Puerto Rican lesbian from the Bronx, heads to Portland, OR, for an internship with a bona fide celesbian author. Through her experiences, she questions and unlocks the various intersectionalities that divide and bind.

Russo, Meredith.  If I Was Your Girl. 2016. 288p. Flat Iron Books, $17.99 (9781250078407).  Grades 10+.  Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s Award Book.  Meredith Russo tells the story of Amanda Hardy, a trans teen who moves to rural Tennessee for a fresh start. Groundbreaking for its skill and authentic representation, this book displays the complexity, power, and hope possible when authors’ #ownvoices are reflected in their art.

Self, Jeffrey. Drag Teen. 2016. 261p. Scholastic/Push, $17.99 (9780545829939). Grades 9+. A drag competition offers JT the opportunity to break out of his small-town Florida life and live his dream onstage in wig, heels, and false eyelashes.

Selzer, Adam.  Just Kill Me. 2016. 325p. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (9781481434942).  Grades. 9+. Megan has been surrounded by death her whole life, given her family has owned a funeral home for generations.  So guiding ghost tours seems natural…until it appears someone might want her to be the next ghost on their tour.

Spangler, Brie. Beast. 2016. 330p. Random House/Alfred A. Knopf, $17.99 (9781101937167). Grades 9+. Fifteen-year-old Dylan, 6’4” and growing, is known as “Beast.” When an incident sends him to a self-harm group he falls for Jamie and discovers the he’s not alone in struggling with his identity.

Stevenson, Robin. Under Threat. 2016. 129p. Orca Books, $9.95 (9781459811317). Grades 9+. Franny’s parents, the town’s local abortion providers, have always received threats.  But when the threats reach a little too close to home, will they destroy both her family and her relationship with her girlfriend?

Tamaki, Mariko. Saving Montgomery Sole. 2016. 228p. Macmillan/Henry Holt/Roaring Brook Press, $17.99 (9781626722712). Grades 7+. While Montgomery spends her time steeped in the paranormal, she never questions the security and love of her two moms. When a well-known evangelical preacher moves to town, she worries that others may challenge her family.

Thorne, Jenn Marie. The Inside of Out. 2016. 425p. Penguin Books/Dial Books for Young Readers, $17.99 (9780803740587). Grades 9+. Daisy thinks being an ally to her best friend is going to be easy.  As she leads the fight to allow same-sex dates at Homecoming, Daisy discovers that standing with her friend is different from standing in for her friend.

* Tilahun, Na’amen Gobert. The Root. 2016. 411p. Skyhorse Publishing/Night Shade Books, $14.99 (9781597808637). Grades 9+. Two teens live in alternate versions of San Francisco, each fighting to keep their world alive from the dark forces that threaten destruction.

Whaley, John Corey. Highly Illogical Behavior. 2016. 249p. Dial Books, $17.99 (9780525428183). Grades 8+. Solomon Reed hasn’t stepped out of his house in three years; Lisa Praytor wants nothing more than to leave their town.  Solomon may be her ticket out.

* White, Kiersten. And I Darken. 2016. 486p. Random House Children’s Books/Delacorte, $18.99 (9780553522310). Grades 9+. Lada and Radu, children of the Wallachian prince Vlad Dracul, are abandoned to the Ottomon Empire to ensure peace between the kingdoms. When assassination plots and unexpected loves arise, both must decide where their loyalties arise.

Winters, Cat. The Steep and Thorny Way. 335p. 2016. Abrams/Amulet, $17.95, (9781419719158). Grade 9+. Urged on by her father’s ghost, Hanalee and Joe search to find the truth about his murder in 1920s Oregon.

 

Young Adult Non-Fiction

Cooper, Alex. Saving Alex: When I Was Fifteen I Told My Mormon Parents I Was Gay, and That’s When My Nightmare Began. 2016. 248p. HarperCollins/HarperOne, $24.99 (9780062374608).  Grades 9+. Alex Cooper tells the true story of her time in an unlicensed conversion program and the fight to live openly gay in her conservative surroundings.

Cronn-Mills, Kirstin, and Alex Nelson. LGBTQ+ Athletes Claim the Field: Striving for Equality. 2016. 103p. Lerner Publishing Group/Twenty First Century Books, $34.65 (9781467780124). Grades 7+. The stories of LGBTQ+ athletes, past and present, who have struggled for inclusion in competitive sports.

Jennings, Jazz. Being Jazz: My life as a (Transgender) Teen. 2016. 265p. Random House/Crown, $17.99 (9780399554643). Grades 7+. Jazz Jennings recounts growing up trans, becoming a national spokesperson, and role model.

Keyser, Amber J. The V-Word. 2016. 197p. Simon & Schuster/Beyond Words, $10.99 (9781582705217). Grades 9+. Seventeen women share the real stories of their first time sexual encounters.

Testa, Rylan J., Deborah Coolhart, Jayme Peta. The Gender Quest Workbook: A Guide for Teens & Young Adults Exploring Gender Identity. 2015. 169p. New Harbinger/Instant Help, $16.95 (9781626252974). Grades 9+. This is a workbook designed to help young adults explore gender identity and its intersectionalities.

 

Graphic Novels

Monster, Sfe R., ed. Beyond:  The Queer Sci-Fi and Fantasy Anthology. 2015.  $20.00, (9780990995692). Grades 10+. Queer comics from space travel to werewolves and everything in between.

Nicholson, Hope, ed. The Secret Loves of Geek Girls: Expanded Edition. 2016. 279p. Random House/Dark Horse Comics, $14.99 (9781506700991). Grades 10+. Comics and essays combine in this nonfiction anthology on geeks and relationships.

* O’Neill, Katie. Princess Princess Ever After. 2016. 53p. Oni Press, $12.99 (9781620103401). Grades 2-5. A graphic novel where girls are heroes, monsters just want to dance, and two princess find their happily ever after together.

Ottaviani, Jim. The Imitation Game: Alan Turing Decoded. Written by Jim Ottaviani, illus. by Leland Purvis. 2016. 217p. Abrams/Harry N. Abrams, $24.95 (9781419718939).  Grades 9+.  Mathematician and pioneer of computer science, Alan Turing, cracked the Enigma Code aiding in WWII’s conclusion. Persecuted for his sexual orientation, his life comes to a catastrophic end.

Stevenson, Noelle, Shannon Watters, Carolyn Nowak, Maarta Laiho, and others. Lumberjanes Volume 3: A Terrible Plan. 2016. 112p. Simon & Schuster/Boom Studios, $14.99 (9781608868032). Grades 6-12. During a free day at camp, Jo, April, and Ripley try to earn as many badges as possible, while Mal and Molly’s picnic date turns into a journey to a parallel dimension when the Bear Woman shows up.

* = Top Ten

The 2017 Rainbow Books list committee includes Co-Chair Kathleen Breitenbach, Hamilton Township Public Library, Hamilton, N.J.; Co-Chair Mary Gen Davies, Chicago Public Library, Chicago; Heather Acerro, Rochester Public Library, Rochester, Minn.; Dawn Betts-Green, Tallahassee, Fla.; Ruth Ann Compton, Arlington County Public Library, Arlington, Va.; Shelley Ann Mastalerz, Seattle Public Library, Seattle; and Edward Sullivan, Oak Ridge, Tenn.

 

Rainbow Book List Update for November

Posted by: marygendavies on: November 8, 2016

We apologize for making everyone wait for the list, but at last!  We have the full roster of nominees for the 2017 Rainbow Book List.  Stay tuned for the completed Rainbow Book List, to be posted after the Youth Media Awards are announced on January 23, 2017.  Until then, read and enjoy!

Anderson, Kirsten. Who Is Elton John? Written by Kirsten Anderson; illus. by Joseph J. M Qiu. 2016. 105p. Penguin/Grosset & Dunlap, $5.99 (9780448488462). Gr. 3-7.

Austrian, J.J. Worm Loves Worm. Written by J.J. Austrian; illus. by Mike Curato. 2016. 32p.  HarperCollins/Balzer & Bray, $17.99 (9780062386335). Age 3-8.

Bardugo, Leigh. Crooked Kingdom. 2016. 546p. Macmillan/Henry Holt and Co.,  $18.99 (9781627792134). Grade 7+.   

Bow, Erin. The Scorpion Rules. 2015. 374p. Simon & Schuster/Margaret K. McElderry Books, $17.99 (9781481442718). Grades 9+.

Brothers, Meagan. Weird Girl and What’s His Name. 2015. 320p. Three Rooms Press, $16.95 (9781941110270). Gr. 9+.

Brown, Jaye Robin. Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit. 2016. 419p. HarperCollins/HarperTeen, $17.99 (9780062270986) Gr. 10+.

Cassidy, Yvonne. How Many Letters are in Goodbye? 2016. 427p. North Star Editions/Flux, $11.99 (9780738747453). Grades 9+.

Chase, Dakota. Mad About the Hatter. 2015. 176p. Harmony Ink Press, $14.99 (9781634761482). Grade 9+.

Cherry, Allison. Look Both Ways. 2016. 296p. Random House/Delacorte, $17.99 (9780553511864). Grades 9+.

Clark, Kristin Elizabeth. Jess, Chunk, and the Road Trip to Infinity. 2016. 256p. Macmillan/Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $17.99 (9780374380069). Grades 9+.

Conley, Garrard. Boy Erased: A memoir.  2016. 340p. Penguin/Riverhead Books, $27.00 (9781594633010). Gr. 10+.  

Cooper, Alex. Saving Alex: When I Was Fifteen I Told My Mormon Parents I Was Gay, and That’s When My Nightmare Began. 2016. 248p. HarperCollins/HarperOne, $24.99 (9780062374608).  Grades 9+.

Córdova, Zoraida.  Labyrinth Lost. 2016. 324p. Sourcebooks/Sourcebooks Fire, $17.99 (9781492620945). Grade 9+.  

Cronn-Mills, Kirstin, and Alex Nelson. LGBTQ+ Athletes Claim the Field: Striving for Equality. 2016. 103p. Lerner Publishing Group/Twenty First Century Books, $34.65 (9781467780124). Grades 9+.

Curtis, Simon. Boy Robot. 2016. 415p. Simon & Schuster/Simon Pulse, $17.99 (9781481459297). Grade 9+.

Downham, Jenny. Unbecoming. 2016. 375. Scholastic/David Fickling Books, $17.99 (9780545907170). Grades 9+.

Duncan, Alexandria. Sound. 2015. 489p. HarperCollins/Greenwillow, $17.99 (9780062220172). Grades 9+.

Federle, Tim. The Great American Whatever. 2016. 278p. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (9781481404099). Gr. 9+.  

Garvin, Jeff. Symptoms of Being Human. 2016. 335p. HarperCollins/Balzar + Bray, $17.99 (9780062382863). Gr. 9+.

Gephart, Donna. Lily and Dunkin. 2016. 340p. Random House Children’s/Delacorte, $16.99 (9780553536744). Grades 4-6.

Girard, M.E. Girl Mans Up. 2016. 373p. HarperCollins/HarperCollins Children’s Books, $17.99 (9780062404176). Grades 9+.

Gold, Rachel. My Year Zero. 2016. 278p. Bella Books, $16.95 (9781594934827). Grades 9+.

Gordon, Meryl G. The Flower Girl Wore Celery. 2016. 32p. Lerner/Kar-Ben Publishing, $17.99 (9781467778442). Ages 4-7.

Goslee, S.J. Whatever. 2016. 266p. Macmillan/Henry Holt & Co./Roaring Brook, $17.99 (9781626723993). Grades 9+.

Hartinger, Brent. Three Truths and a Lie. 2016. 261p. Simon & Schuster/Simon Pulse, $17.99 (9781481449601). Grades 9+.

Harvey, Sarah N. Spirit Level. 2016. 233p. Orca Book Publishers, $14.95 (9781459808164). Grades 9+.

Hennessey, M. G. The Other Boy. 2016. 234p. HarperCollins, $16.99 (9780062427663). Grades 9+.

Heppermann, Christine. Ask Me How I Got Here. 2016. 225p. HarperCollins/Greenwillow, $17.99 (9780062387950). Grades 9+.

Howe, James. Big Bob, Little Bob. Written by James Howe; , illus. by Laura Ellen Anderson. 2016. 32p. Candlewick, $15.99 (9780763644369). Ages 3-7.

Hutchinson, Shaun David. We Are the Ants. 2016. 451p. Simon & Schuster/Simon Pulse, $17.99 (9781481449632). Grades 9+.

Ingram, Dayna. All Good Children. 2016. 202p. Lethe Press, $15.00 (9781590215890). Gr. 10+.

Ismail, Yasmeen. I’m a Girl. 2016. 32p. Bloomsbury, $16.99 (9781619639751). Ages 3-7.

Jacobs, Evan. FatherSonFather. 2015. 199p. Saddleback Educational Publishing, $9.95 (9781680210385). Gr. 9+.

Jaffe, Sara. Dryland. 2015. 216p. Tin House Books, $14.95 (9781941040133). Grade 9+.

Jennings, Jazz. Being Jazz: My life as a (Transgender) Teen. 2016. 265p. Random House/Crown, $17.99 (9780399554643). Grades 7+.

Kessler, Liz. Read Me Like A Book. 2016. 297p. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763681319). Gr. 9+.

Keyser, Amber J. The V-Word. 2016. 197p. Simon & Schuster/Beyond Words, $10.99 (9781582705217). Grades 9+.

Kulling, Monica. Happy Birthday, Alice Babette. Written by Monica Kulling; illus. by Qin Leng. 2016. 32p. Groundwood Books, $16.95 (9781554988204). Grades Pre-K-2.

Lambert, Megan Dowd. Real Sisters Pretend. Written by Megan Dowd Lambert, illus. by Nicole Tadgell. 2016. 32p. Tilbury House, $16.95 (9780884484417) Grades PreK-2.

Levithan, David, and Nina LaCour. You Know Me Well. 2016. 250p. Macmillan/St. Martin’s/Griffin, $18.99 (9781250098641). Grades 9+.

Levy, Dana Alison. The Family Fletcher Takes Rock Island.  2016.  259p. Random House/Delacorte Books for Young Readers, $16.99 (9780553521306). Gr. 4-6.

Litten, Kristyna. Blue & Bertie. 2016. 32p. Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books, $17.99 (9781481461542). Ages 2-6.

Logan, Kenneth. True Letters from a Fictional Life. 2016. 323p. HarperCollins Children’s Books/HarperTeen, $17.99 (9780062380258). Grades 9+.

Manushkin, Fran.  Happy in Our Skin. 2015. 32p. Written by Fran Manushkin, illus. by Lauren Tobia. Candlewick Press, $15.99 (9780763670023). Ages 2-5.

Mason, Jane B. Without Annette. 2016. 325p. Scholastic, $18.99 (9780545819954). Grades 9+.

McGoon, Gregory. The Royal Heart. 2015. 32p. Pelekinesis Publishing Group, $19.95 (9781938349423). Ages 3-5.  

McGuire, Seanan. Every Heart a Doorway. 2016. 173p. Macmillan/St. Martin’s Press/Tom Doherty Associates, $17.99 (9780765385505). Grades 9+.

McLemore, Anna-Marie. When the Moon Was Ours. 2016. 273p. Macmillan/St. Martin’s/Griffin/Thomas Dunne, $18.99 (9781250058669). Grades 9+.

Monster, Sfe R., ed. Beyond:  The Queer Sci-Fi and Fantasy Anthology. 2015.  $20.00, (9780990995692). Grades 9+.

Moskowitz, Hannah, and Kat Helgeson. Gena/Finn. 2016. 287p. Chronicle Books, $17.99 (9781452138398). Grades 9+.

Nicholson, Hope, ed. The Secret Loves of Geek Girls: Expanded Edition. 2016. 279p. Random House/Dark Horse Comics, $14.99 (9781506700991). Grades 10+.

Nijkamp, Marieke. This Is Where it Ends. 2016. 285p. Sourcebooks/Sourcebooks Fire, $17.99 (9781492622468). Grades 9+.

Nowlin, Laura. This Song Is (Not) for You. 2016. 230p. Sourcebooks/Sourcebooks Fire, $9.99 (9781492602903). Gr. 8+.

O’Neill, Katie. Princess Princess Ever After. 2016. 53p. Oni Press, $12.99 (9781620103401). Grades 3-6.

Ottaviani, Jim. The Imitation Game: Alan Turing Decoded. Written by Jim Ottaviani, illus. by Leland Purvis. 2016. 217p. Abrams/Harry N. Abrams, $24.95 (9781419718939).  Grades 9+.  

Peeples, Jase. Square Zair Pair. Written by Jase Peeples; illus. by Christine Knopp. 2016. 48p. Zair Pair Books, $14.99 (9780996826303). Ages 3-6.

Pelleschi, Andrea. Transgender Rights and Issues. 2016. 112p. Abdo/Essential Library, $35.64 (9781624039034). Grades 7+.

Peppermint, Aurora.  Beneath the Scales. 2015. 150p. Harmony Ink, $14.99 (9781634760676). Grades 9+.

Phillips, Rebecca. Any Other Girl. 2016. 261p. Kensington, $9.95 (9781617738821). Grades 9+.

Poole, H.W. LGBT Families. 2016. 48p. Mason Crest, $20.95 (9781422236192). Grades 3-5.

Redgate, Riley. Seven Ways We Lie. 2016. 343p. Abrams/Harry N. Abrams, $17.95 (9781419719448). Grades 9+.

Riordan, Rick. The Hidden Oracle. 2016. 376p. Disney, $19.99 (9781484732748). Grades 6-10.

Rivera, Gabby. Juliet Takes a Breath. 2016. 266p. Riverdale Ave. Books, $19.99 (9781626012516).  Gr. 10+.

Rodi, Robert & Ross, Laura. Living Proud! Growing Up LGBTQ: Being Transgender. 2017. 64p. Mason Crest, $23.95 (9781422235027). Grades 6+.

Rodi, Robert & Ross, Laura. Living Proud! Growing Up LGBTQ: Keeping Physically Healthy. 2017. 64p. Mason Crest, $23.95 (9781422235065). Grades 6+.  

Rodi, Robert & Ross, Laura. Living Proud! Growing Up LGBTQ: Living with Religion and Faith. 2017. 64p. Mason Crest, $23.95 (9781422235072). Grades 6+.  

Rodi, Robert & Ross, Laura. Living Proud! Growing Up LGBTQ: Understanding Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. 2017. 64p. Mason Crest, $23.95 (9781422235119). Grades 6+.

Rossing, Nina. Fjord Blue. 2016. 256p. Harmony Ink, $16.99 (9781634763851). Grades 9+.

Russo, Meredith. If I Was Your Girl. 2016. 280p. Macmillan/Flatiron Books, $17.99 (9781250078407). Grades 9+.

Self, Jeffrey. Drag Teen. 2016. 261p. Scholastic/Push, $17.99 (9780545829939). Grades 9+.

Selzer, Adam.  Just Kill Me. 2016. 325p. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (9781481434942).  Gr. 9+.

Shraya, Vivek. The Boy and the Bindi. Written by Vivek Shraya; illus. by Rajini Perera. 2016. 32p. Arsenal Pulp Press, $17.95 (9781551526683). Ages 4-8.

Siegert, Mia. Jerkbait. 2016. 244p. Jolly Fish Press, $14.99 (9781631630668). Grades 9+.

Sorese, Jeremy. Curveball. 2015. 420p. Nobrow, $19.95 (97819106200520) Grades 9+.

Sotira, Trina. In Her Skin: Growing Up Trans. 2016. 211p. MuseWrite Press, $15.00 (9780989960922). Grades 9+.  

Spangler, Brie. Beast. 2016. 330p. Random House/Alfred A. Knopf, $17.99 (9781101937167). Grades 9+.

Spotswood, Jessica, ed. A Tyranny of Petticoats: 15 Stories of Belles, Bank Robbers, & Other Badass Girls. 2016. 354p. Candlewick, $17.99 (9780763678487). Grade 9+.  

Stevenson, Noelle, and Grace Ellis. Lumberjanes, Vol. 2: Friendship to the Max. Written by Noelle Stevenson and Grace Ellis; illus. by Brooke Allen. 2015. 112p. Simon & Schuster/Boom Studios/BOOM! Box, $14.99 (9781608867370). Gr. 5-12.

Stevenson, Noelle, Shannon Watters, Carolyn Nowak, Maarta Laiho, and others. Lumberjanes Volume 3: A Terrible Plan. 2016. 112p. Simon & Schuster/Boom Studios, $14.99 (9781608868032). Grades 6-12.

Stevenson, Robin. Pride: Celebrating Diversity and Community. 2016. 119p. Orca Books,  $24.95 (9781459809932). Grades 4-8.

Stiefvater, Maggie. The Raven King. 2016. 439p. Scholastic, $18.99 (9780545424981). Grades 8+.  Stevenson, Robin. Under Threat. 2016. 129p. Orca Books, $9.95 (9781459811317). Grades 9+.

Sugar, Rebecca. The Answer. Written by Rebecca Sugar, illus. by Elle Michalka and Tiffany Ford. 2016. 30p. Penguin/Cartoon Network Books, $9.99 (9780399541704). Grades K-4.

Tamaki, Mariko. Saving Montgomery Sole. 2016. 228p. Macmillan/Henry Holt/Roaring Brook Press, $17.99 (9781626722712). Gr. 7+.

Testa, Rylan J., Deborah Coolhart, Jayme Peta. The Gender Quest Workbook: A Guide for Teens & Young Adults Exploring Gender Identity. 2015. 169p. New Harbinger/Instant Help, $16.95 (9781626252974). Grades 9+.

Thompson, Kelly. Jem and the Holograms, Volume 1:  Showtime. Written by Kelly Thompson; illus. by Sophie Campbell.  2015. 152p. IDW, $19.99 (9781631403958). Grades 9+.

Thorne, Jenn Marie. The Inside of Out. 2016. 425p. Penguin Books/Dial Books for Young Readers, $17.99 (9780803740587). Grades 9+.

Tilahun, Na’amen Gobert. The Root. 2016. 411p. Skyhorse Publishing/Night Shade Books, $14.99 (9781597808637). Grades 9+.

Van, Andi. Magic Fell (The Mages’ Guild Trilogy Book 1). 2016. 190p. Harmony Ink Press, $14.99 (9781634768801).  Grades 9+.

Wagner, Cody.  The Gay Teen’s Guide to Defeating a Siren: Book One: The Seeker. 2015.  322p. Cody Wagner, $10.95 (9780996713504). Grade 8+.   

Walton, Jessica. Introducing Teddy: A Gentle Story About Gender and Friendship. Written by Jessica Walton; illus. by  Dougal MacPherson. 2016. 32p. Bloomsbury, $16.99 (9781681192109). Ages 3-6.

Whaley, John Corey. Highly Illogical Behavior. 2016. 249p. Dial Books, $17.99 (9780525428183). Gr. 8+.

White, Kiersten. And I Darken. 2016. 486p. Random House Children’s Books/Delacorte, $18.99 (9780553522310). Grades 9+.

Williams, Vera and Chris Raschka. Home at Last. 2016. 40p. HarperCollins/Greenwillow, $17.99 (9780061349737). Age 5-8.  

Williamson, Lisa. The Art of Being Normal. 2016. 344p. Macmillan/Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $17.99 (9780374302375). Grades 8+.

Winters, Cat. The Steep and Thorny Way. 335p. 2016. Abrams/Amulet, $17.95, (9781419719158). Grade 9+.

2016 Rainbow Book List

Posted by: Naomi Gonzales on: January 11, 2016

2016 Rainbow Book List

The Rainbow Book List Committee proudly announces the 2016 Rainbow Book List. The Rainbow Book List is a bibliography of books with significant gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or queer/questioning content, and which are aimed at youth, birth through age 18. The list is intended to aid youth in selecting high-quality books that were published between July 2014 and December 2015. The list also is intended to aid as a collection development or readers’ advisory tool for librarians serving children and young adults.

The committee members evaluated over 250 books from small, independent, and large publishers, and selected 40 books from 27 publishers for the 2016 Rainbow Book List. The list also includes three additional books selected by the Stonewall Book Awards Committee as Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Award or Honor Books.

Starred titles indicate the Rainbow Book List’s Top Ten choices from the list, highlighting books of exceptional queer representation and literary merit to receive particular commendation.

The committee members would like to note the staggering increase in number of books of quality that fit the criteria of the list, as well as a number of books with bisexual and intersex representation. The committee would also like to draw attention to the decrease in books for younger readers, as well as the continued small numbers of LGBTQ characters of color or with disabilities. Also, as in previous years, high-quality nonfiction, including memoirs and history so vital to tying a culture together, remains sparse.

2016topten

Picture Books

Hall, Michael. Red: A Crayon’s Story. 2015. 40p. Greenwillow, $18.89 (9780062252098). 3-7 yrs.

The label read, “Red.” However, all of Red’s strawberries and hearts come out blue. Friends and family try to fix Red until new buddy Berry helps this crayon discover his true color.

Newman, Lesléa. Heather Has Two Mommies. Written by Lesléa Newman, illus. by Laura Cornell. 2015. 32p. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763666316). 3-7 yrs.

Heather’s favorite number is two: she has two arms, two legs, two pets, and two mommies. When Heather goes to preschool, she learns that not all families look alike, but that they all have one thing in common—love. New text and illustrations make this classic accessible to a modern audience.

Rotner, Shelly, and Sheila M. Kelly. Families. 2015. 32p. Holiday House, $17.95 (9780823430536). 3-7 yrs.

A beautiful diversity of family life is depicted through simple text and photographs.

Schiffer, Miriam B. Stella Brings the Family. Written by Miriam Schiffer; illus. by Holly Clifton-Brown. 2015. 36p. Chronicle, $16.99 (9781452111902). 3-7 yrs.

It’s Mother’s Day, and everyone is making invitations for their mothers to come to the school celebration. But Stella has two dads and no mom to invite…What should she do?

Tyner, Christy. Zak’s Safari. Written by Christy Tyner; illus. by Ciaee. 2014. 38p. CreateSpace, $15.00 (9781502325464). 3-7 yrs.

When young Zak’s outdoor “safari” gets cancelled because of the rain, he leads his readers (and his stuffed animal tourists) on an adventure through the story of his family. Zak introduces his two mothers and how they became a family of three with the help of a donor from a sperm bank.

Juvenile Fiction

Gino, Alex. George. 2015. 195p. Scholastic, $16.99 (9780545812542). Gr 3-7.

Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s Award Book. When people look at George, they see a boy. But she knows she’s a girl. With the help of her best friend, George comes up with a plan, not just so she can be Charlotte in her school play but so everyone can know who she is, once and for all.

*Polonsky, Ami. Gracefully Grayson. 2014. 243p. Hyperion, $16.99 (9781423185277). Gr. 4-7.

Twelve-year-old Grayson, through a school play, finds the courage to reveal a deep truth: in spite of being seen as a boy, she knows for a fact that she’s a girl.  

*Selznick, Brian. The Marvels. 2015. 667p. Scholastic, $32.99 (9780545448680). Gr. 5-8.

In black-and-white pencil illustrations, Selznick depicts three generations of actors descending from the sole survivor of a legendary shipwreck. As that story closes, another unfolds in prose as young Joseph discovers his connection to the actors and his family history, and he embraces his uncle’s life story as it affects and changes his own.

Juvenile Nonfiction

Pohlen, Jerome. Gay & Lesbian History for Kids: The Century-Long Struggle for LGBT Rights, with 21 Activities. 2015. 192p. Chicago Review, $17.95 (9781613730829). Gr. 4-9.

From ancient China to the 2015 U.S. Supreme Court decision on marriage equality, this narrative history reference gives context to the challenges and achievements of both queer individuals and the broader quest for civil rights.

*Silverberg, Cory. Sex is a Funny Word: A Book about Bodies, Feelings, and YOU. Written by Cory Silverberg; illus. by Fiona Smyth. 2015. 159p. Seven Stories, $23.95 (9781609806064). Gr. 3-6.

For children with questions about bodies, gender, touch, sex, and love, this all-inclusive book guides the conversation between children and trusted adults in an accessible graphic format. Gentle, intelligent humor brings home the message of respect, trust, joy, and justice for everyone’s body. Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Award Honor Book.

Young Adult Fiction

Adler, Dahlia. Under the Lights. 2015. [279p]. Spencer Hill Contemporary, $9.95 (9781633920170). Gr. 9-12.

Vanessa Park loves her job on the teen TV drama Daylight Falls; Josh Chester is a notorious Hollywood playboy whose career is spiraling out of control. As major life transitions happen, relationships blossom in unexpected ways.

*Albertalli, Becky. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. 2015. 320p. Balzer + Bray, $17.99 (9780062348678). Gr. 8-12.

Closeted high schooler Simon Spier is being blackmailed—either help Martin Addison get together with the girl of his dreams (Simon’s good friend) or Simon’s sexuality and email romance with mystery classmate “Blue” will be made public.  Follow Simon as he comes out, handles his bully, and navigates how to be with “Blue” in real life. 

Barzak, Christopher. Wonders of the Invisible World. 2015. 352p. Knopf, $17.99 (9780385392792). Gr. 9-12.

Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Award Honor Book. Seventeen-year-old Aidan feels like he is sleepwalking through his life until his childhood friend Jarrod returns to his hometown. Jarrod and Aidan are inexorably drawn to each other. Can their connection help Aiden unlock the secrets in his family and find his true self?

Black, Holly. The Darkest Part of the Forest. 2015. 328p. Little, Brown, $18.00 (9780316213073). Gr. 8-12.

Hazel should have known better than to make a deal with the fairies of the forest for her brother Ben’s talent, but it’s too late. The long-sleeping horned boy—the unrequited love of both siblings—has broken out of his glass box, and the Fae have come to exact their price.

Bray, Libba. Lair of Dreams. 2015. 624p. Little, Brown, $19.99 (9780316126045). Gr. 8-12.

After escaping a psychotic killer, the Diviners believe their life will be easier. Instead they find that a mysterious phantom is drawing people into a dream world, where they are trapped within a nightmare and murdered. Can dreamwalkers Henry and Ling save the city?

Brown, Rachel Manija and Sherwood Smith. Stranger. 2014. 432p. Viking, $18.99 (9780670014804). Gr. 7-12.

Generations after a natural disaster destroyed civilization as we know it, eighteen-year-old prospector Ross Juarez escapes King Voske’s bounty hunter and finds refuge in the town of Las Anclas. Mutated residents with strange powers live side-by-side with “Norms,” yet not even this haven is free from the shadow of King Voske’s greed for dominion.

Brugman, Alyssa. Alex As Well. 2015. 224p. Henry Holt, $16.99 (9781627790147). Gr 9-12.

Fourteen years old and intersex, Alex was raised by her parents as a boy, but she knows she is a girl. Taking her identity into her own hands, she stops her testosterone pills and starts over at a new school. This presents a whole new set of challenges, from facing down disapproving parents to navigating her legal rights.

Clare, Cassandra, Sarah Rees Brennan, and Maureen Johnson. The Bane Chronicles. 2014. 507p. McElderry, $22.99 (9780692238066). Gr. 8-12.

When Magnus Bane is not battling in the world of Shadowhunters, vampires, werewolves, or tentacle demons, his universal amorous tastes (not to mention his cutting-edge fashion sense) lead him through adventures of a different kind. From the eighteenth century to the twenty-first, these stories augment the life of this fabulous character first introduced in City of Bones, giving fans and newcomers alike intriguing insights into the world of The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices.

Dawn, Nyrae. The History of Us. 2015. 184p. Harmony Ink, $14.99 (9781634761796). Gr. 9-12.

Basketball player Bradley Collins is out to his friends but doesn’t see his sexuality as central to his identity. TJ is openly gay and about to embark on a road trip to document LGBTQ people and their experiences. Bradley joins him on a road trip full of beautiful stories and emotional growth.

Floreen, Tim. Willful Machines. 2015. 368p. Simon Pulse, $17.99 (9781481432771). Gr. 9-12.

In a future world where machines are not only sentient but also have free will, Lee is the closeted son of the very conservative US President. When an escaped 2B machine targets Lee at his prep school, all hell breaks loose.

Grace, Amanda. No One Needs to Know. 2014. 229p. Flux, $9.99 (9780738736259). Gr. 9-12.

Olivia and Zoey live drastically different lives in Tacoma, WA—Olivia in the penthouse of a highrise overlooking the sound, Zoey in a crumbling house on the wrong side of the tracks. When Zoey starts seeing Olivia’s brother, and the girls are paired for a school project, they get a glimpse of each other’s lives, and find themselves becoming more than friends.

Gregorio, I.W. None of the Above. 2015. 340p. Balzer + Bray, $17.99 (9780062335319). Gr. 9-12. 

Kristin’s life is just about perfect: a full-ride to university on a track scholarship, a great boyfriend, and a surprise election as homecoming queen. When she decides to have sex for the first time, it goes painfully wrong, and a visit to the gynecologist reveals a life-altering fact: Kristin is intersex. Living her through her diagnosis of androgen insensitivity syndrome means facing the brutal response of classmates, as well as her own evolving understanding of what her gender identity means.

Hutchinson, Shaun David. The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley. 2015. 297p. Simon Pulse, $17.99 (9781481403108). Gr. 9-12.

Andrew Brawley should have died in the car accident that killed his parents and sister; he did not. Instead, he skulks around in the hospital where they died, working on his graphic novel and avoiding the ever-vigilant eyes of Death. When Rusty, a boy set on fire for being gay, arrives in the ER, Andrew falls in love and begins to imagine life outside the hospital walls.

Koehler, Christopher. Poz. 2015. 180p. Harmony Ink, $14.99 (9781632163684). Gr. 9-12.

Remy Babcock is seventeen, a rower, in the closet, and newly HIV-positive. As he navigates the consequences of a series of casual flings, he regains the trust of his loved ones and his own sense of self-worth.

Konigsberg, Bill. The Porcupine of Truth. 2015. 336p. Arthur A. Levine Books, $17.99 (9780545648936). Gr. 9-12.

Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Young Adult Award Book. Carson is stuck in Billings, Montana, when he meets Aisha. The two head out for an epic road trip that will change both their lives. Their adventure helps them find a community, a history, and a family.

Levithan, David. Hold Me Closer: The Tiny Cooper Story. 2015. 200p. Dutton, $17.99 (9780525428848). Gr. 9-12.

Tiny Cooper—”the world’s largest person who is also really, really gay” of Will Grayson, Will Grayson fame—shares his life story in this libretto of a musical.

McCarry, Sarah. About a Girl: A Novel. 2015. 272p. St. Martin’s Griffin, $21.99 (9781250068620). Gr. 10-12.

Astronomy buff Tally plans to go to college, solve the mysteries of the universe, and win a Nobel Prize along the way. When love complicates her friendship with the boy next door, Tally veers off on a quest to uncover her own mysterious origins. Astronomy meets mythology in a magical realist twist, and Tally’s questions get lost in the arms of a beautiful woman determined to forget her own past. 

*Mesrobian, Carrie. Cut Both Ways. 2015. 352p. HarperCollins, $17.99 (9780062349880). Gr. 9-12.

Seventeen-year-old Will believes he is adept at straddling two worlds. He lives with his affluent mother in the suburbs where he makes out with his gay best friend; he lives with his struggling father in the city where he hooks up with a girl from school. When his worlds collide, he is cut both ways. 

Moskowitz, Hannah. Not Otherwise Specified. 2015. 260p. Simon & Schuster, $11.99 (9781481405959). Gr. 8-12.

Seventeen-year-old Etta feels out-of-place in her small Nebraska town: she’s not gay enough for her former lesbian friends or straight enough for the rest of the school; she’s not sick enough to be diagnosed with an eating disorder or thin enough to be a ballerina. Etta is left to discover who she really is and what it means to be “not otherwise specified.”

Nielsen, Susan. We Are All Made of Molecules. 2015. 256p. Wendy Lamb, $16.99 (9780553496864). Gr. 7-10.

Personalities clash when brainiac Stewart and his widower father move in with social-elite Ashley and her mother. To complicate matters (and to Ashley’s chagrin), her gay dad lives in the carriage house in the backyard.

*Reid, Raziel. When Everything Feels Like the Movies. 2015. 171p. Arsenal Pulp, $15.95 (9781551525747). Gr. 9-12. 

There is no such thing as bad press, especially to small town middle-schooler Jude Rothesay. Loosely based on the on the real-life story of Larry Fobes King, this brutal novel explores the life of a glamorous boy who is always in the spotlight.

Rowell, Rainbow. Carry On. 2015. 522p. St. Martin’s Griffin, $19.99 (9781250049551). Gr. 8-12.

Simon Snow just wants to have a normal(ish) last year at his magickal school, Watford, with his girlfriend Agatha and his best friend Penny. However, the Insidious Humdrum has other plans. On top of that, Simon’s discovery that his probably-vampire roommate and definite nemesis, Baz, has gone missing is far more distracting than he would have expected.

*Scelsa, Kate. Fans of the Impossible Life. 2015. 368p. Balzer + Bray, $17.99 (9780062331755). Gr. 9-12.

Jeremy, Mira and Sebby first bond while gathering signatures on a petition to establish an after-school Art Club. All three of them struggle with physical and emotional traumas, but together they hope to bring some light into their lives. The use of a different voice for each character’s portion of the narrative (first, second and third person) adds haunting perspective to their powerful stories.

Schmatz, Pat. Lizard Radio. 2015. 288p. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763676353). Gr. 7-10.

Kivali is a Bender. Not quite boy or girl, Kivali must fit in or risks being exiled to Blight. Sent to CropCamp, a commune meant to steer teens toward a lifetime of good citizenship and “proper” gender roles, Kivali, called Lizard, wrestles with friendship, love, and the price of being true to oneself.

Silvera, Adam. More Happy Than Not. 2015. 295p. SohoTeen, $18.99 (9781616955601). Gr. 9-12.

Aaron Soto is a sixteen-year-old Puerto Rican living in the Bronx, happy in his relationships with his girlfriend and childhood friends, despite his father’s recent suicide. When Aaron starts to fall for a guy and things go terribly wrong, how far will he go to erase the horrible memories of his past?

*Stetz-Waters, Karelia. Forgive Me If I’ve Told You This Before. 2014. 299p. Ooligan, $14.95 (9781932010732). Gr. 9-12.

Triinu Hoffman realizes she is definitely gay, a problem in the middle of a statewide campaign against equal rights for homosexuals in 1992 Oregon. Through lyrical language, this novel depicts a true test for Triinu of who she is and who she wants to become.

Talley, Robin. What We Left Behind. 2015. 416p. Harlequin Teen, $18.99 (9780373211753). Gr. 10-12.

Toni and Gretchen were the perfect high school couple, determined to stay together forever. However, their relationship begins to strain when Gretchen unexpectedly starts college at NYU instead of following Toni to Boston. Further troubles arise as Toni connects with Harvard’s trans community, which raises questions about Toni’s own gender and Gretchen’s sexuality.

Walton, Will. Anything Could Happen. 2015. Scholastic, $17.99 (9780545709545). Gr. 7-12.

Having a secret crush can be hard. For Tretch, a closeted teen who is in love with his straight best friend, it verges on torture. Whether he reveals his true feelings or continues to avoid them, the only certain thing is that anything could happen.

Wilke, Daria. Playing a Part. Tr. by Marian Schwartz. 2015. 161p. Arthur A. Levine, $18.99 (9780545726078). Gr. 7-10.

This import—the first teen book translated from Russian—follows Grisha’s coming-of-age in a Moscow puppet theater, as he reels from the impending departure of his beloved gay mentor Sam and the looming heart operation of his best friend Sashok.

Young Adult Nonfiction

*Andraka, Jack, with Matthew Lysiak. Breakthrough. 2015. 239p. Harper, $18.99 (9780062369659). Gr. 7-12.

Teen scientist Jack Andraka’s journey through middle and high school is replete with homophobic persecution at school and skepticism from the scientific community. Between developing an early and inexpensive test for pancreatic cancer and establishing his own sense of self-worth, Jack’s story is a beacon of inspiration and hope.

Graphic Novels and Graphic Nonfiction

Hubert. Adrian and the Tree of Secrets. Written by Hubert, illus. by Marie Caillou, tr. by David Homel. 2015. 125p. Arsenal Pulp, $18.95 (9781551525563). Gr. 8-12.

This French graphic novel tells the story of Adrian, whose oppressive mother and strict Catholic school make being openly gay seem outside of the realm of possibility. After sharing a kiss in a treehouse, Adrian experiences a glimpse of a life without loneliness. 

*Tamaki, Jillian. SuperMutant Magic Academy. 2015. 224p. Drawn and Quarterly, $22.95 (9781770461987). Gr. 9-12.

At this boarding school for paranormal teenagers the student body is a wild mix, from witches and shapeshifters to jocks and performance artists. Hilarity ensues.

Thrash, Maggie. Honor Girl. 2015. 272p. Candlewick, $19.99 (9780763673826). Gr. 8-12.

In this graphic memoir, Maggie Thrash recalls a summer at Camp Bellflower for Girls when she was fifteen. As she develops skills, makes enemies, and gains unexpected recognition, she also feels the first spark of attraction to camp counselor Erin.

Committee

The 2016 Rainbow Books list committee includes Thaddeus Andracki, Chair; Heather Acerro, Jess Alexander, Abbie Anderson, Ruth Compton, Mary Gen Davies, M’issa Fleming, Shelley Mastalerz, Lucas McKeever, and Edward “Sully” Sullivan.  The committee also received support from administrative assistant, Naomi Gonzalez.

Rainbow Project Update for September

Posted by: Naomi Gonzales on: October 14, 2015

As we rush into the last month for the first round of our consideration process, we offer to you, our faithful friends, this list of books that came under formal consideration for the committee during the month of September. Join us in November for the full list of titles under consideration!

Claiborne, Erin. A Hero at the End of the World. 2014. 308p. Big Bang Press, 15.95 (9780990484400). Gr. 9-12.

Konigsberg, Bill. The Porcupine of Truth. 2015. 336p. Arthur A. Levine Books, $17.99 (9780545648936). Gr. 9-12.

Lambert, Megan Dowd. A Crow of His Own. 2015. 32p. Charlesbridge, $16.95 (9781580894470). 4-7 yrs.

Rowell, Rainbow. Carry On. 2015. 522p. St. Martin’s Griffin, 19.99 (9781250049551). Gr. 8-12.

Schiffer, Miriam B. Stella Brings the Family. Written by Miriam Schiffer; illus. by Holly Clifton-Brown. 2015. 36p. Chronicle Books. 16.99 (9781452111902). 3-8 yrs.

Schmatz, Pat. Lizard Radio. 2015. 288p. Candlewick, $16.99 (9780763676353). Gr. 8-12.

Silverberg, Cory. Sex is a Funny Word: A Book about Bodies, Feelings, and YOU. Written by Cory Silverberg, illus. by Fiona Smyth. 2015. 159 pgs. Seven Stories Press, 23.95 (9781609806064). Gr. 3-5.

Thrash, Maggie. Honor Girl. 2015. 272p. Candlewick Press, 19.99 (9780763673826). Gr. 8-12.

carryon crowown hero honorgirl lizardradio porpucine sexfunny stella

Rainbow Project Update for August

Posted by: Naomi Gonzales on: September 8, 2015

The Rainbow Project is still furiously reading away, and after a frenzy of activity, we have a large number of books newly under consideration for the final list. Enjoy perusing what we thought was worthwhile! The following books came under consideration during August:

Black, Holly. The Darkest Part of the Forest. 2015. 328p. Little, Brown, 18.00 (9780316213073). Gr. 8-12.

Claiborne, Erin. A Hero at the End of the World. 2014. 308p. Big Bang Press, 15.95 (9780990484400). Gr. 9-12.

Clare, Cassandra, Sarah Rees Brennan, and Maureen Johnson. The Bane Chronicles. 2014. 507p. McElderry Books, 22.99 (9780692238066). Gr. 9-12.

Gino, Alex.  George. 2015. 195p. Scholastic Press, 16.99 (9780545812542). Gr 3-7.

Grace, Amanda. No One Needs to Know. 2014. 229p. Flux, 9.99 (9780738736259). Gr. 9-12.

Hall, Michael. Red: A Crayon’s Story. 2015. 40p. Greenwillow Books, 18.89 (9780062252098). 4-7 yrs.

Koehler, Christopher. Poz. 2015. 180p. Harmony Ink Press, 14.99 (9781632163684). Gr. 9-12.

Levithan, David. Hold Me Closer: The Tiny Cooper Story. 2015. 200p. Dutton, 17.99 (9780525428848). Gr. 9-12.

McCarry, Sarah. About a Girl: A Novel. 2015. 272p. St. Martin’s Griffin, 21.99 (9781250068620). Gr. 10-12.

Regan, Anne, editor. First Time for Everything: A Harmony Ink Press Anthology. 2014. Harmony Ink, 6.99 (9781632164476). Gr. 9-12.

Rotner, Shelly, and Sheila M. Kelly. Families. 2015. 32p. Holiday House, $17.95 (9780823430536). 3-7 yrs.

Shannon, George. One Family. Written by George Shannon; illus. by Blanca Gómez. 2015. 32p. Farrar, Straus Giroux, 17.99 (9780374300036). 3-7 yrs.

Silvera, Adam. More Happy Than Not. 2015. 295p. SohoTeen, 18.99 (9781616955601). Gr. 9-12.

Stevenson, Noelle. Nimona. 2015. 266p. HarperTeen, 17.99 (9780062278234). Gr. 7-12.

Stevenson, Noelle, and Grace Ellis. Lumberjanes Vol. 1: Beware the Kitten Holy. 2015. 128p. BOOM! Box, 14.99 (9781608866878). Gr. 5-12.

Thomas, Leah. Because You’ll Never Meet Me. 2015. 344p. Bloomsbury, 17.99 (9781619635906). Gr. 9-12.

Wilke, Daria. Playing a Part. Tr. by Marian Schwartz. 2015. 161p. Arthur A. Levine, 18.99 (9780545726078). Gr. 6-10.

Wood, Jennie. A Boy Like Me. 2014. 269p. 215 Ink, 12.99 (9780692238066). Gr. 9-12.

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Rainbow List Update for July

Posted by: Naomi Gonzales on: August 7, 2015

Members of the committee are continuing to read and recommend books. The following three books have come up for consideration for the 2016 list during the month of July:

Hubert. Adrian and the Tree of Secrets. Written by Hubert, illus. by Marie Caillou, tr. by David Homel. 2015. 125p. Arsenal Pulp Press, 18.95 (9781551525563). Gr. 8-12.

Hutchinson, Shaun David. The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley. 2015. 297p. Simon Pulse, 17.99 (9781481403108). Gr. 9-12.

Lang, Suzanne and Max. Families, Families, Families!  Written by Suzanne Lang, illus. by Max Lang. 2015. 32 p. Random House, 16.99 (9780553499384). 3-7 yrs.

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Rainbow List Update for June

Posted by: Naomi Gonzales on: June 27, 2015

The Rainbow List Committee has been happily reading away for the 2016. The following nine titles are formally up for consideration for the list this year, although many more titles are being read!

Albertalli, Becky. Simon Vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. 2015. 303p. Balzer + Bray, $17.99 (9780062348678). Gr. 9-12.

Andraka, Jack, with Matthew Lysiak. Breakthrough. 2015. 239p. Harper, $18.99 (978-0-06-236965-9). Gr. 8-12.

Bausum, Ann. Stonewall: Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights. 2015. 128p. Viking, $16.99 (9780670016792). Gr. 7-12.

Brugman, Alyssa. Alex As Well. 2015. 224p. Henry Holt, $16.99 (9781627790147). Gr 9-12.

Kerrick, Mia. Us Three. 2014. 180p. Harmony Ink Press, $14.99 (978-1-62798-908-4). Gr. 9-12.

Moskowitz, Hanna. Not Otherwise Specified. 2015. 260p. Simon & Schuster, $11.99 (9781481405959). Gr. 8-12.

Polonsky, Ami. Gracefully Grayson. 2014. 243p. Hyperion, $16.99 (9781423185277). Gr. 5-7.

Reid, Raziel. When Everything Feels Like the Movies. April 14, 2015. 171p. Arsenal Pulp Press, $15.95 (978-1551525747). Gr. 9-12.

Yeh, Kat. The Truth About Twinkie Pie. 2015. 342p. Little, Brown, $17.00 (9780316236621). Gr. 5-7.

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2015 Rainbow Book List

Posted by: Naomi Gonzales on: February 1, 2015

The Rainbow Book List Committee proudly announces the 2015 Rainbow Book List. The Rainbow Book List is a bibliography of books with significant gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender content, and which are aimed at youth, birth through age 18. The list is intended to aid youth in selecting high-quality books which were published between July 2013 and December 2014. The list also is intended to aid as a collection development or reader’s advisory tool for librarians serving children and young adults.

The committee members evaluated over 140 books from small, independent, and large publishers, and selected 24 books from 15 publishers for the 2015 Rainbow Book List. Among the 150 books evaluated by the committee, committee members noted an increase in the number of titles featuring authentic trans voices as well as an increase in picture books.

Titles noted with an asterisk (*) are a Top Ten Title.

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Juvenile Fiction

Federle, Tim. Five, Six, Seven, Nate! January 2014. 304p. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, $16.99. (9781442446939). Ages 10-14.
In the sequel to Better Nate Than Ever, Nate Foster’s Broadway dreams are finally coming true.

YA Fiction

Anonymous. The Book of David. June 3, 2014. Simon Pulse, $9.99. (1442489855). Ages 14-17.
Through journal entries, a small-town high school quarterback recounts his experiences of falling for the new kid and the fear of being outed by his best friend.

Barakiva, Michael. One Man Guy. May 2014. 261p. FSG, $17.99. (978-0-374-35645-3). Grades 7-10.
Freshman Alek’s idea of a great summer is not summer school, but his strict and academically driven Armenian parents have different plans. Enter Ethan, the totally suave, older, skater dude. School never looked so good.

*Cameron, Janet E. Cinnamon Toast and the End of the World. February 2014. 373p. Hachette Books Ireland, $22.99. (978-1444743975).
Stephen Shulevitz has three months to go before his high school graduation, when he’s faced with the end of the world–realizing he’s in love with very straight and very homophobic best friend. With only a few months left to go in his small town, Stephen tries to figure out who he is and who he wants to be.

*Farizan, Sara. Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel. October 2014. 304p. Algonquin Young Readers, $16.95. (9781616202842). Ages 12-18.
High-school junior Leila Azadi suddenly and unexpectedly falls hard for Saskia, the beautiful and sophisticated new girl at school. Leila finds herself taking risks she never would have before.

Kamata, Suzanne. Screaming Divas. May 2014. 205p. Merit Press, $17.99. (978-1440572791). Ages 14-17.
High school misfits Trudy, Cassie, Harumi and Esther seem an unlikely group to be in the up-and-coming punk band Screaming Divas. Will their rocky friendship survive love, addiction and imminent tragedy?

LaCour, Nina. Everything Leads To You. May 2014. 307p. Dutton Juvenile, $17.99. (978-0525425885). Grades 9-12.
Emi and her best friend Charlotte are invited to stay at Emi’s brother’s apartment in LA for the summer after graduation, with one condition: they must do something “epic” while he’s gone. When they discover a cryptic letter from a world-famous celebrity, Emi thinks that this mystery might be what they’re looking for.

*Nelson, Jandy. I’ll Give You the Sun. 2014. 384p. Dial books for young readers (Penguin Young Readers division), $13.74. (0803734964). Ages 14+
Artistic twins Jude and Noah each have only half the story of why they broke apart. Their art becomes a force of its own as they negotiate love, loss, lies and the possibility of reuniting their lives.

*Sharpe, Tess. Far from You. April 2014. 344p. Hyperion, $17.99. (978-1-4231-8462-1). Grades 9-12.
Sophie lives with chronic pain from a car accident that also left her hooked on Oxy. Sophie is clean now—but she’s reeling from the loss of her love Mina, who died in a mysterious shooting that the police think was a botched drug deal. Will Sophie be able to solve the murder, or will she be the next victim?

*Smith, Andrew. Grasshopper Jungle. February 2014. 388p. Dutton Books. $18.99. (978-0-525-42603-5). Ages 14+
As if living in a world overrun by six-foot-tall hungry and horny mutant praying mantises isn’t bad enough, Austin realizes he is in love with both his best friend Robbie and his girlfriend Shann. #donteatthecorn

*Watts, Julia. Secret City. July 2013. 266p. Bella Books, $11.95. (9781594933905). Grades 8-12.
When sixteen-year-old Ruby Pickett moves with her family to Oak Ridge, Tennessee in 1944, she is told not to talk about why this new city was created. When Ruby starts working for Iris, a young mother whose husband works in one of the top-secret government buildings, their friendship blossoms into something more and Ruby begins to believe in a wider world for herself.

Westerfeld, Scott. Afterworlds. September 23, 2014. 608p. Simon Pulse, $19.99. (978-1481422345). Ages 14+
With a contract in hand for her YA novel, eighteen-year-old Darcy Patel arrives in New York City. Over the course of a year, Darcy finishes her book, faces critique, and falls in love in love with the enigmatic Imogene. Woven into Darcy’s personal story is her novel, Afterworlds, a suspenseful thriller about a teen who slips into the “Afterworld” to survive a terrorist attack.

YA Non-fiction

*Anderson, Tim. Sweet Tooth. March 2014. 334p. Lake Union Publishing, $14.95. (978-1477818077). Ages 17+
What’s a sweets-loving boy growing up gay in North Carolina in the eighties supposed to think when he’s diagnosed with type 1 diabetes? That God is punishing him, naturally. Sweet Tooth is Tim Anderson’s uproarious memoir of life after his hormones and blood sugar both went berserk at the age of fifteen.

Andrews, Arin. Some Assembly Required: The Not-So-Secret Life of a Transgender Teen. September 2014. 256p. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. $17.99. (9781481416757). Ages 14+
Seventeen-year-old Arin Andrews describes the struggles he faced being perceived as a girl growing up, and how things changed for him that he experienced once he began his transition in this humorous and sometimes heartbreaking memoir.

*Golio, Laurel and Diana Scholl. We Are the Youth: Sharing the Stories of LGBT Youth in the United States. June 2014. 95p. Space-Made. $19.99. (978-1-63173-223-2). Ages 10+
Based on an ongoing photojournalism project of the same name, We Are the Youth was inspired by the idea that reading about others’ life experiences can create understanding, empathy and empowerment. In this book, LGBT youth tell their stories in their own words.

Hill, Katie Rain. Rethinking Normal: A Memoir in Transition. September 2014. 272p. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, $17.99. (978-1481418232). Grades 8+
In an honest and unique voice, Katie Rain Hill opens up about growing up, struggling with depression, family, love, and undergoing gender reassignment.

Hill, Mel Reiff and Jay Mays. The Gender Book. January 2013. 90p. Marshall House Press, $31.00. (0991338006). Grades 7-10
An illustrated guide to the nuances of gender and gender identity for all ages.

Kuklin, Susan. Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out. 2014. 192p. Candlewick, $22.99. (0763656119). Grades 7-12.
Six trans and gender-neutral teens are interviewed in this necessary resource for teens and adult alike. While the trans experience varies from teen to teen, the participants Beyond Magenta are candid and unflinchingly honest.

Graphic Novel Non-fiction

Ed. Saiya Miller and Liza Bley. Not Your Mother’s Meatloaf. July 2013. 272p. Soft Skull Press, $15.95. (1593765177). Ages 16+
In this comics anthology, a variety of authors explore their experiences, perceptions of sexuality, gender, power, consent, and their own bodies as they relate experiences from their teenage years.

Prince, Liz. Tomboy: A graphic memoir. September 2014. 256p. Zest Books, $15.99. (978-1936976553). Grades 8+
For as long as she can remember, Liz has been happiest in jeans and sneakers, never in dresses and heels. Is there a place for a tomboy in girl culture?

Picture books 

Baldacchino, Christine. Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress . May 2014. 32p. Groundwood Books, $16.95. (978-1554983476). Age range: 4-8.
Morris wears a beautiful orange dress that reminds him of his mother’s hair and tigers, but his classmates say that dresses are for girls. One night, Morris has a dream that changes everything.

*Bone, Jeffrey and Lisa Bone. Not Every Princess. 32p. Magination Press; $14.95. (978-1433816475). Grades Pre-K-3.
Anyone can be a princess, a pirate, a mermaid, or a superhero. Demonstrated through rhyming text and whimsical illustrations, whatever you can imagine, you can become.

Herthel, Jessica + Jazz Jennings. I am Jazz. September, 2014. 32p. Dial, $17.99. (0803741073). Ages 4-8.
Jazz says she “has a girl brain in a boy body.” Based on the life of Jazz Jennings, this picture book talks about her experiences growing up as a transkid.

*Pitman, Gayle E., Litten, Kristyna (illustrator). This Day in June. May 2014. 32p. American Psychological Association Magination Press, $14.95. (978-1-4338-1658-1). Age range: 4-8.
This Day In June welcomes young readers to experience a pride celebration and share in a day when we are all united.

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