Feature image photo by Westend61 via Getty Images
Hey howdy, pals!
I hope this tail end of summer has been treating you kindly — I’ve been reading outside as much as possible, listening to that Lofi Beats playlist for hours on end, eating lots of fresh bread, and making some ill-advised trips to the bookstore. I thought I knew what my TBR roster was, but no — Nona the Ninth arrived on my doorstep (so now naturally I have to reread Gideon and Harrow too just to, ahem, refresh my memory. No other reason. 😉) and I was recommended A Memory Called Empire, which rocketed to the top of the list. What can I say, book recommendations from hot people just hit different. I’m a simple gal. (Hotties, share your recs in the comments!)
This little run of sci-fi and genre fiction has been such a pleasant surprise; it’s been a long time since I had to get stuck in to something so imaginatively rigorous since I’m usually more of a realism/nonfiction gal, and I’ve found it refreshing and invigorating. What a fun time!
Alrighty, let’s make like a Vespa and scoot. On this week’s Rainbow Reading, we’ve got:
Shelf Care: Reviews, Essays, and other Things of Note
- Laneia shared this in the Autostraddle Slack and y’all know it ROCKETED to the top of this piece lol: The Lesbian Literary Luminaries of the South!
- Becky Chambers won a Hugo for A Psalm for the Wild-Built, and delivered a beautiful speech in absentia!
- Kristen Arnett wrote about the best sex writing she’s ever read — and you better believe it’s from Julia Armfield’s Our Wives Under the Sea!!
- LGBTQ Reads has a great lineup of butch protagonists in YA!
- RIP to a legend: Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickel and Dimed and other groundbreaking studies of politics, activism, and inequality, passed away this week.
- The Malinda Lo Stan Has Logged ON: A Scatter of Light arrives in October!
- Out now: Didn’t Nobody Give A Shit What Happened to Carlotta by James Hannaham (winner of the PEN/Faulkner and Hurston/Wright Legacy Awards!)
- “Irreverently funny and devastatingly sad, a quixotic tale about the queerness of missed time” — Michelle Hart for Electric Literature
- “Expertly balances the seriousness of the criminal legal system with the irreverence, absurdity, humor, and healing connections of Carlotta’s world.” — Sarah Neilson for them.
- Isle McElroy reminds us that Holden Caulfield isn’t real and you’re allowed to dislike stuff 😈
- Also out now, Diary of a Misfit hit shelves this past Tuesday and sounds right up my alley.
- This December smells like teen spirit: Roses, In the Mouth of a Lion by Bushra Rehman, a coming-of-age story set in the Corona neighborhood of Queens about a Pakistani-American girl!
- Kayla’s piece here on Autostraddle remains my favorite, but there’s more amazing coverage for All This Could Be Different by Sarah Thankam Mathews at LARB and The New Yorker!
- Just a few short weeks until the sequel to Pulitzer-winner Less!
- Queer Disaster Wizards: Notorious Sorcerer arrives on 9/13!
- Heretic by Autostraddle beloved Jeanna Kadlec comes out on October 25!
- The Family Outing has one helluva hook: “By the time Jessi reached adulthood, everyone in her family had come out: Jessi as gay, her sister as bisexual, her father as gay, her brother as transgender, and her mother as a survivor of a traumatic experience with an alleged serial killer.”
“These are more like stories of young people coming into themselves. There’s confusion as to what they really want, what they desire. But there’s also a freeness to the way they consider these parts to themselves, even set against the rigidly gendered backdrop of the fashion industry.”
Autocorrect: Books content from the last couple weeks at Autostraddle!
- Dani gathered Poetry Collections for a Big Life Change!
- Kayla reviewed Jules Ohman’s Body Grammar!
- Chinelo reviewed We Are Flowers for Queer Naija Lit!
- Stef reviewed Diary of a Misfit!
- Stef also reviewed Enjoy Me Among My Ruins!
- God, I love the Slow Takes series. In this installment, Drew wrote about Stone Fruit!
- Sa’iyda gathered 10 Queer YA Books for Back-to-School Vibes!
- Stef wrote about the complicated and life-changing legacy of Middlesex!
- Casey gathered 103 Queer and Feminist Books Coming Your Way Fall 2022! ONE HUNDRED AND THREE!!!!!!!!!!!!
- Heather reviewed the graphic novel Coven!
Small Press Spotlight
Hybrid poetry-essays? You know that’ll get my attention! Dream Rooms is “part essay, part poem, part fever dream journal entry” and spans trans identity, queer sexuality, ecology, body politics, and more. This blurb from Chase Joynt got my attention: “A quick-witted, momentum-filled, tender rebellion of a book.” Count me in. You can preorder from Bookhug Press here — can’t wait to celebrate its publication on October 18!
That’s all she wrote, folks! If you’re a queer writer, particularly an early-career queer writer: I’d love to hear about the cool things you’re up to so that I can share links to your published essays, book reviews, short stories, poems, and longform features on LGBTQ+ topics! Please email me links for consideration at email@example.com with the subject line “Rainbow Reading Submission” — I’m an avid browser-tab-collector, and I especially want to hear from you if you’ve just landed your first publication or first major byline.
i preordered nona a while back and am excited for her to arrive soon! but i’m torn – do i do a reread of gideon and harrow to refresh (i would say i don’t really remember most of what happened in harrow but i cannot claim to have understood it the first time haha) and accept that i’ll be way behind the internet, or do i just go in cold and hope for the best?
I’ve also been debating the same. I think I’m going to go with the re-reads and just turn off the internet for a few weeks.
hm i do think i will join you! i think i’m headed for unnecessary confusion (on top of the inherent confusion of reading muir) if i don’t take the time to do so.
plus it’s ALWAYS a good day for a gideon reread
I love this book coverage!! Our Wives Under The Sea remains a true favorite of mine but I can’t wait to dig into others listed here. I especially appreciate the small press shout-outs. Thank you for writing!!
Great news about Becky Chambers! And in related good news for me, A Prayer for the Crown-shy just became available for me at my library!
And The Oleander Sword by Tasha Suri and This is Why They Hate Us by Aaron H Aceves are “in transit”. Just in time for the weekend. I love my library.
Stay for the speech after Becky Chambers, where Arkady Martine thanks her wife in her speech, which is lovely as well. Loved a Memory Called Empire and looking forward to A Desolation called Peace.
thanks for that
I never look at book recommendations, it’s so stupid for me. All people have different tastes and desires. I’d rather work than choose a book for someone I don’t know. By the way, I recently found a duplicate content checker that made my job easier, you can check out that. This saved time I can spend on myself. I think it’s much better than spending on others.
I really enjoyed it to read your blog and all of your books are extremely interesting, thank you for sharing them with us.