HAPPY PRIDE MONTH from everyone at BKMRK! We’re spending the month of June celebrating Pride 2021 by highlighting some of our incredible queer titles, as if your TBR pile isn’t already high enough…
From staples like Alice Oseman’s Heartstopper series to thrilling fiction with Tess Sharpe, you’re about to get a whole lot of LGBTQ+ inclusive inspiration for your bookshelf (PLUS, if you read to the end, there may be details of a giveaway where you could get your hands on some of these titles…).
'I love this book!' Rainbow Rowell
'... a tender, funny, absolutely heart-holding novel about a boy who is forced to share his room with his lifelong crush for fifteen days. It's a gay romance that would have changed my world if I'd read it as a teen.' David Levithan
Felipe doesn't believe someone like Caio could ever fall for someone like him. But over the next fifteen days, everything will change ... If you love Rainbow Rowell and Heartstopper, you'll fall for this body-positive love story about the assumptions we make about each other, and the bravery you need to be yourself.
Felipe is fat. And he doesn't need anyone to remind him, which is, of course, what everyone does. That's why he's been waiting for summer: a break from school and the classmates who tease him incessantly. His plans include catching up on TV, finishing his TBR pile, and watching YouTube tutorials on skills he'll never actually put into practice.
But things get a little out of hand when Felipe's mom informs him that Caio, the neighbour kid from apartment 57, will be spending the next fifteen days with them while his parents are on vacation. Felipe is distraught because A) he's had a crush on Caio since, well, for ever, and B) Felipe has a list of body image insecurities and absolutely NO idea how he's going to entertain his neighbor for two full weeks.
Suddenly, the days ahead of him that once promised rest and relaxation (not to mention some epic Netflix bingeing) end up bringing a whirlwind of feelings, forcing Felipe to dive head-first into every unresolved issue he has had with himself - but maybe, just maybe, he'll manage to win over Caio, too.
A queer love story for anyone who's ever got into a pool with their shirt on.
'It's a sweet, funny, warm-hearted gem of a story - exactly the sort of thing the world needs right now!' Simon James Green
A bisexual girl who gives anonymous love advice to her school friends is hired by the hot new kid to help him get his ex back. Leah on the Offbeat meets To All the Boys I've Loved Before - the new queer YA rom-com from Sophie Gonzales.
'Perfectly wonderful' - Becky Albertalli, New York Times bestselling author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Her advice, spot on. Her love life, way off.
Can give you the solution to any of your relationship woes - for a fee.
Uses her power for good. Most of the time.
Really cannot stand the new Australian jock at school, Alexander Brougham.
Has maybe not the best judgement when it comes to her best friend, Brooke...who is in love with someone else.
Does not appreciate being blackmailed.
But when Brougham catches Darcy in the act of collecting letters from locker 89 - out of which she's been running her questionably legal, anonymous relationship advice service - that's exactly what happens. In exchange for keeping her secret, Darcy begrudgingly agrees to become his personal dating coach. The goal? To help him win his ex-girlfriend back.
Darcy has good reason to keep her identity secret. If word gets out that she's behind the locker, some things she's not proud of will come to light, and there's a good chance Brooke will never speak to her again.
Okay, so all she has to do is help an entitled, bratty, (annoyingly hot) guy win over a girl who's already fallen for him once? What could possibly go wrong?
by Tess Sharpe
Soon to be a Netflix film starring Stranger Things' Millie Bobby Brown - this must-read psychological thriller, perfect for fans of One of Us Is Lying, will leave you guessing until the final page.
As an ex con artist, Nora has always got herself out of tricky situations. But the ultimate test lies in wait when she's taken hostage in a bank heist. And this time, Nora doesn't have an escape plan ...
Meet Nora. Also known as Rebecca, Samantha, Haley, Katie and Ashley - the girls she's been.
Nora didn't choose a life of deception - she was born into it. As the daughter of a con artist who targeted criminal men, Nora always had to play a part. But when her mother fell for one of the men instead of conning him, Nora pulled the ultimate con herself: escape.
For five years Nora's been playing at normal - but things are far from it when she finds herself held at gunpoint in the middle of a bank heist, along with Wes (her ex-boyfriend) and Iris (her secret new girlfriend and mutual friend of Wes ... awkward). Now it will take all of Nora's con artistry skills to get them out alive.
Because the gunmen have no idea who she really is - that girl has been in hiding for far too long ...
'Slick, stylish and full of suspense' - Sophie McKenzie.
'A powerful gut-punch of a book that will leave you reeling long after its final pages. I couldn't put it down!' - Chelsea Pitcher.
'Unlike anything I've read before... immediate, gripping, incredibly tense, heart-breaking, heart-warming and FUN! ' - Holly Jackson.
'I could hardly breathe until I finished. The tension! Absolutely loved it.' - Emily Barr
by Alice Oseman
*Soon to be a live-action Netflix series!* Boy meets boy. Boys become friends. Boys fall in love. The bestselling LGBTQ+ graphic novel about life, love, and everything that happens in between: this is the fourth volume of HEARTSTOPPER, for fans of The Art of Being Normal, Holly Bourne and Love, Simon.
'Absolutely delightful. Sweet, romantic, kind. Beautifully paced. I loved this book.' RAINBOW ROWELL, author of Carry On
Charlie didn't think Nick could ever like him back, but now they're officially boyfriends. Charlie's beginning to feel ready to say those three little words: I love you.
Nick's been feeling the same, but he's got a lot on his mind - not least coming out to his dad, and the fact that Charlie might have an eating disorder.
As summer turns to autumn and a new school year begins, Charlie and Nick are about to learn a lot about what love means.
By Alice Oseman, winner of the YA Book Prize, Heartstopper is about love, friendship, loyalty and mental illness. It encompasses all the small stories of Nick and Charlie's lives that together make up something larger, which speaks to all of us.
'The queer graphic novel we wished we had at high school.' Gay Times
This is the fourth volume of Heartstopper, which is soon to be a live-action Netflix series.
Hani and Ishu couldn't be less alike - and they definitely don't like each other. But when fates collide and they pretend to date each other, things start to get messy... A heart-warming queer YA love story for fans of Becky Albertalli.
Everyone likes Hani Khan - she's easy going and one of the most popular girls at school. But when she comes out to her friends as bisexual, they don't believe her, claiming she can't be bi if she's only dated guys. Panicked, Hani blurts out that she's in a relationship... with a girl her friends can't stand - Ishu Dey.
Ishu is the polar opposite of Hani. An academic overachiever, she hopes that becoming head girl will set her on the right track for university. Her only problem? Becoming head girl is a popularity contest and Ishu is hardly popular. Pretending to date Hani is the only way she'll stand a chance of being elected.
Despite their mutually beneficial pact, they start developing real feelings for each other. But some people will do anything to stop two Bengali girls from achieving happily ever after.
by Juno Dawson
Illustrated by Soofiya
Discover what it means to be a young transgender and/or non-binary person in the twenty-first century in this frank and funny guide for 14+ teens, from the author of This Book is Gay. In What's the T?, Stonewall ambassador, bestselling trans author and former PSHE teacher Juno Dawson defines a myriad of labels and identities and offers uncensored advice on coming out, sex and relationships with her trademark humour and lightness of touch. Juno has also invited her trans and/or non-binary friends to make contributions, ensuring this inclusive book reflects as many experiences as possible, and features the likes of Travis Alabanza and Jay Hulme.
The companion title to the This Book Is Gay, What's the T? tackles the complex realities of growing up trans with honesty and humour, and is joyfully illustrated by gender non-conforming artist Soofiya.
Nishat and Flávia are rivals at school, but Nishat can't help the secret crush burning in her heart - even though her parents disapprove of the fact she likes girls. Can she possibly find her happy ever after? A gorgeous, heart-warming, queer YA love story for fans of Becky Albertalli.
When Nishat comes out to her parents, they say she can be anyone she wants - as long as she isn't herself. Because Muslim girls aren't lesbians. Nishat doesn't want to lose her family, but she also doesn't want to hide who she is, which only gets harder once Flávia walks into her life.
Beautiful and charismatic, Flávia takes Nishat's breath away. But as their lives become tangled, they're caught up in a rivalry that gets in the way of any feelings they might have for each other.
Can Nishat find a way to be true to herself... and find love too?
Adiba Jaigirdar is a stunning new voice in young adult fiction, writing uplifting, authentic stories from a Bengali-Irish perspective.
by Tanya Byrne
THE LESBIAN LOVE STORY YOU'VE BEEN DYING TO READ. Ash Persaud is about to become a reaper in the afterlife, but she is determined to see her first love Poppy Morgan again, the only thing that separates them is death.
Car headlights.The last thing Ash hears is the snap of breaking glass as the windscreen hits her and breaks into a million pieces like stars. But she made it, she's still here. Or is she?
This New Year's Eve, Ash gets an invitation from the afterlife she can't decline: to join a clan of fierce girl reapers who take the souls of the city's dead to await their fate.
But Ash can't forget her first love, Poppy, and she will do anything to see her again ... even if it means they only get a few more days together. Dead or alive ...
NOT EVEN DEATH CAN TEAR THEM APART.
'Byrne is a talented writer with attitude, and a fresh, original voice' Daily Mail
We hope you’re suitably inspired! If you’re celebrating Pride 2021, don’t forget to tag us in your posts. We love to see what you’re up to and may even share a few pics to our own socials… You can find us at @teambkmrk if you haven’t already.
Fancy some further reading? We’ve got you covered. Find out about more of our LGBTQ+ books here.
Okay, so now it’s GIVEAWAY TIME! We’re working with Ross from @RoyalBookshelf and @LGBTQMonth on Twitter to give away two bundles of our newest LGBTQ+ titles. All you have to do to enter is follow all three accounts, retweet this tweet and tell us which bundle you’d prefer.
BUNDLE ONE – The Girls I’ve Been, Heartstopper, Perfect on Paper and What’s the T?
BUNDLE TWO – The Paper & Hearts Society: Read with Pride, Hani & Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating and Afterlove.
Yep, it’s going to be pretty hard to choose… good luck and happy reading! 🤞🌈