The Literary Others: An LGBT Reading Event (Sign-Up Post)


 Welcome to the sign-up post for:

The Literary Others: An LGBT Reading Event!

I am excited to be bringing back THE LITERARY OTHERS reading event this October, for LGBT History Month. 

What is LGBT? LGBT stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender. For the purposes of this event, “LGBT” works will refer to those which are written by a gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender author, or to those works whose major themes/characters are LGBT-centric (Books with a gay protagonist, books dealing with homophobia, poetry by a lesbian, stories where a character is dealing with gender identity issues or changes, etc.). 

I know my blog readers are an eclectic bunch. We have lovers of literature and the classics and lovers of Young Adult fiction. We have lovers of fantasy, science-fiction, poetry, and drama. We have non-fiction readers, audiobook listeners, and those wacky dystopian fans!

Well, did you know that, across all these genres and media types, there exists a wide-range of very powerful, very entertaining LGBT material?  For many, this event could be an opportunity to read your very first gay classic; for others, it might be a time to re-read or re-visit favorite authors and share why you love them and their works so much. 

So, for this event, the goal is to read as many pieces of LGBT literature as you want/are able to, during the month of October. Biographies, audiobooks, and re-reads count.

I will post throughout the month on different subjects related to the study of LGBT literature and history, as well as my own reviews of the LGBT books I finish. I will also be offering giveaways, and I am hopeful that some participants will be interested in writing guest posts or hosting giveaways of their own, to make this more interactive.

If you are going to participate, then simply plan to read books by LGBT writers, or books whose primary themes/characters are gay/lesbian, etc. Below are a few representations of LGBT works within the many possible genres. This list is by no means comprehensive, it is simply a starting point.

Literature & Classics

  • Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin
  • Nightwood by Djuna Barnes
  • The Well of Loneliness by Radclyffe Hall
  • Orlando by Virginia Woolf
  • The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
  • A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood
  • At Swim, Two Boys by Jamie O’Neill
  • The Persian Boy by Mary Renault (historical fiction)

Contemporary Fiction

  • Oranges are not the Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson
  • Annabel by Kathleen Winter
  • A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara
  • The Lost Language of Cranes by David Leavitt
  • Memory Mambo by Achy Obejas
  • Under the Poppy by Kathe Koja
  • The Swimming Pool Library by Alan Hollinghurst

Young Adult

  • Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan
  • I’ll Get There, It Better Be Worth the Trip by John Donovan
  • Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
  • The Vast Fields of Ordinary by Nick Burd
  • Jumpstart the World by Catherine Ryan Hyde
  • Empress of the World by Sara Ryan
  • Aristotle & Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz


  • Vintage: A Ghost Story by Steve Berman
  • Jumping off the Planet by David Gerrold
  • Shadow Man by Melissa Scott
  • Santa Olivia by Jacqueline Carey
  • Huntress by Malinda Lo
  • The Last Herald Mage series by Mercedes Lackey

Poetry & Drama

  • Tender Buttons by Gertrude Stein
  • Angels in America by Tony Kushner
  • Howl by Allen Ginsberg
  • The Complete Poems by Sappho
  • Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
  • The Satyricon by Petronius


  • Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel 
  • Zami: A New Spelling of My Name by Audre Lorde
  • A Boy’s Own Story by Edmund White (semi-autobiographical)
  • Running With Scissors by Augusten Burroughs
  • Mississippi Sissy by Kevin Sessums
  • Boy Erased by Garrard Conley

Explicit/Erotica (Literary)

  • Teleny, or The Reverse of the Medal by Oscar Wilde
  • Our Lady of the Flowers by Jean Genet
  • The Wild Boys by William S. Burroughs
  • Le Livre Blanc by Jean Cocteau

Volunteers Needed!

If you would like to host a giveaway or provide a guest post, please: CLICK HERE

And if you want to sign-up to participate in The Literary Others Reading Event, simply leave a comment on this post saying YOU’RE IN! Maybe include some of the books you hope to read, too. I plan to read Twilight Men by Andre Tellier, Strange Brother by Blair Niles and The Young and Evil by Charles H. Ford & Parker Tyler. 

Please also post the button somewhere on your blog (in an announcement post or in your blog’s side-bar) so that we can spread the word, gather excitement, and encourage participation. It goes without saying that this is meant to be a positive, fun, and educational event, so bigotry of any kind will not be tolerated.

Sign-ups are open from now through October 5th.  If you sign-up after October 5th, you can still absolutely participate, but you may not be eligible for some of the early giveaway prizes. 

To Share/Discuss on Twitter, Use Hashatag #TheLiteraryOthers

52 Comments on “The Literary Others: An LGBT Reading Event (Sign-Up Post)

    • As for books, A Little Life is probably going to happen. Might do a reread of A Single Man as well. Looking into so many other brilliant options at the moment, but I’m sure I’ll have a large stack soon enough.


      • A Little Life is super draining. If you read that, I suggest yoh pick something cute and fun to follow it up with! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I hope to participate (admittedly, Im not always the most loyal participant in reading challenges). But I plan on reading Orlando and Annabel in October.


  2. October feels so far away, but I know it’ll be here soon enough. I hope to participate, starting with Aristotle & Dante. I intended to read it a long time ago.


    • It will definitely be here quickly! I like to give people notice, but most importantly for events like this, I need time to coordinate with guest posters and giveaway hosts and such. Aristotle & Dante is a great book!


  3. So excited for this one. I’ll take any excuse to reread these, and some of these I haven’t read yet.


  4. I am in! I know for sure I am rereading The Well of Loneliness. That’s all I know at this point. But I will start thinking about others.

    That is also ‘scary book’ month, so I’ll see what I can combine 🙂


    • Ooh! That’d be an interesting mash-up. Steve Berman’s Vintage would work, but that’s YA. Maybe Henry James’s Turn of the Screw or Oscar Wilde’s Dorian Gray… must be plenty of others along those lines. 😀


  5. Well, I’d like to belive that I was the happiest person after seeing this post! I am so excited for the LGBT reading event, and that means, I AM IN!

    The last time I participated, I discovered, read and loved Annabel and a bunch of other really interesting books. This year, I have Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe and more contemporaries on my list. I am waiting for October!

    I will make a sign up post on my blog, and I also plan on doing a giveaway. Well, I’m headed to the bookstore this weekend. I don’t want to spoil anything, but let’s hope I find what I have in mind! I’ll fill up the volunteer form accordingly.

    Lastly, thank you so much, Adam, for hosting the event! ❤

    Sarika @ The Readdicts


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  7. I’m in! I have plenty of LGBT books that I haven’t had a chance to read yet so I will definitely be joining.

    More Happy Than Not
    Tell Me How A Crush Should Fell
    The Unintentional Time Traveler
    and a few others I can’t remember right now.
    Thanks for hosting this. I’m so excited for October 😀


    • More Happy Than Not was great! I’ve for The Unintentional Time Traveler on my TBR as well. Glad you’re joining us!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m a little swamped but I’m thinking about jumping in. Which books on your list are by trans authors? I’m always looking for more, but don’t recognize any of these titles. (I know I could Google every title, but figured since you made the list, it’d be quicker to just ask.)


    • Hmm I’m not sure any of these authors are transgender but off the top of my head, Annabel, Orlando, and Jumpstart the World all have trans characters. I’ll spend some time tomorrow taking a closer look and identify more specific options for transgender and bisexual reading, since those tend to be the least represented.


      • Thanks, they really do tend to be least represented. Jennifer Finney Boylan would be a great one to add to the memoir section. Any of her books (she has some fiction as well) are great!


    • Also not on this list is In One Person by John Irving which explores transgender and bisexuality. I left it off because he’s a straight male author and I was trying to be more diverse…but the book is good.


    • Oh! And of course The Danish Girl which I read earlier this year. I think I gave that one a 3 out of 5.


    • Gah. Another. Lily and Dunkin by Donna Gephart. I haven’t read it yet, but it was highly recommended by another reader and is getting great reviews.


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  10. I’m in! I plan to read Becoming Nicole, it has been on my to read list for a while now.


  11. Of course I am in again! I really enjoyed the event 4 years ago (can you believe it’s been that long?!) 🙂

    I haven’t decided yet on what I’m going to read. I want to explore more Dutch LGBT+ literature I think, but I am also tempted to pick up a classic or some YA… Did you read “Vintage, a Ghost Story”? What did you think? It’s been on my TBR for a while but I took it off at some point, for some mysterious reason… Lately I’ve been craving horror stories though!


    • Woo hoo! Glad you’re back! Yes, I read and loved Vintage. October is also Halloween time, so what’s more perfect? 😉


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  13. Looking forward to this. I’ve been working on how Giovanni’s Room could be read in an intersecional light, considering Baldwin was African-American and gay. I am also going to try to read Selma Lagerlöf’s Gösta Berling’s Saga.


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  15. I’m in! I’m currently reading Chicago Whispers: A History of LGBT Chicago before Stonewall by St. Sukie de la Croix and will also read/reread at least one classic. Thank you for hosting this!


  16. I will not have time to participate much, but I would like to do something. I’m reading a poetry book by Arisa White this month called “You’re the Most Beautiful Thing That Happened”
    Here’s what it’s about (from the author): It’s a meditation on love, loss, language–the performative utterances that are words. The manuscript was inspired by an international list of gay and lesbian terms I found on Wikipedia, and I just kept writing from those translations, paying close attention to the body.

    I’ll share my review on the master post (toward the end of the month). It’s wonderful that you’re doing this, Adam. 🙂


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