It’s a complex time to be queer in America; on the one hand, anti-LGBTQ+ legislation is sadly rampant, but on the other, artists and writers are creating work at unprecedented rates that paint a broader portrait of queer life and identity than the one most of us were raised with. To celebrate that progress, we’ve put together a list of the novels, memoirs, essay collections and other LGBTQ+ books we’re most looking forward to spending time with this year; see them all below.
High-Risk Homosexual by Edgar Gomez
Gomez’s compelling memoir of embracing his gay, Latinx identity in a world that so often prizes neither takes the reader on a whirlwind tour from a Nicaraguan cockfighting ring to a drag queen convention in Los Angeles and far beyond.
Yerba Buena by Nina LaCour
LaCour has written a lesbian love story for the ages in Yerba Buena, which tells the story of two women with complex histories who meet in a glamorous L.A. restaurant and are soon forced to fight to keep their immediate bond flourishing.
In Sensorium: Notes for My People by Tanaïs
This memoir from writer and perfumer Tanaïs is as ambitious as it is wide-ranging, telling the story of their experience as an American Bangladeshi Muslim femme moving around the world in a wise and engaging manner that asks deeply relevant questions about queerness, gender, colonization and South Asian identity.
Girls Can Kiss Now by Jill Gutowitz
Gutowitz explores everything from Orange is the New Black to stan Twitter in this fresh and witty essay collection that takes a precise aim at the gradual mainstreaming of lesbian culture.
The World Cannot Give by Tara Isabella Burton
The Secret History meets The Price of Salt in this coming-of-age novel that revolves around Laura, a shy young woman who enrolls at an elite Maine prep school and quickly becomes infatuated with a mysterious older girl.
The Memory Librarian: And Other Stories of Dirty Computer by Janelle Monáe
Singer-songwriter Monáe tells the story of her acclaimed album Dirty Computer in this delightful collection of speculative-fiction stories that delve into Afrofuturism, queerness, love, lust, gender identity and so much more.
Acts of Service by Lillian Fishman
A young woman follows her exhibitionist streak to uncharted new territory in this bold and unflinchingly sexy novel, engaging in a three-way sexual relationship that teaches her more than she could have imagined about her own desire.
This article was originally published on Vogue.com.