My Revised June Pride TBR: Reading as Many Books by Black Queer Authors As I Can!!

This is proof that I’m terrible with TBRs!

I made my original June TBR right before Black Lives Matter protests broke out all over the world, spurring people and companies and also the book community to take action. One of the things that we can do in the book world moving forward is to read from Black authors and support their work.

So! I decided to drop a few books off my original Pride TBR to make room for more books by Black authors. Of course, I’ll be holding myself accountable to keep this same energy throughout the entire year instead of just this month with the protests, but I thought it was especially fitting for June since Pride exists today because of Black queer activists!!

(I also was looking at my TBR and realizing that I wasn’t really too excited about some of the books. And as a mood reader, especially right now with my inability to focus, being excited about the books I plan to read is really important!)


BLM links & resources

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Running With LionsThis was the first book I picked up for Pride almost a week ago and I still haven’t finished it… This is how you know my focus is absolutely terrible right now!

I’m about halfway through and, um, unfortunately not enjoying it too much? Something is off about the writing and it bothers me a lot, and it makes the book overall feel very weirdly written, including the characters and the romance. So far it’s at 2 stars so we’ll see where it goes from here!!

⇒ rep: bisexual MC, gay Pakistani Muslim LI

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How to Be Remy CameronI discovered that this is also on Scribd, so you bet I’ll be reading it after I finish Running with Lions! Even if I don’t end up loving Running with Lions, I still want to read this since I’ve been meaning to read Julian Winters’ books for a while.

From the Goodreads blurb, it seems like this is literally just a book about discovering who you are. Which I love! I’m definitely into character-driven books like these. I also have heard that there’s a focus on family which I’m really excited about!!

⇒ rep: Black gay MC, Korean gay LI

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The Black FlamingoI’ve heard only the highest of praise for this book (and it won the Stonewall award!), so I’m confident that I’ll love it too. It’s also told in verse, which makes me extra excited for it since I haven’t read poetry in so long!!

I adore stories about self-discovery and coming to terms with your identity, and this book tackles exactly that. Pretty much everything I’ve heard about this book has described it as “beautiful” so I’m ready to dive in to its gorgeous writing!!

⇒ rep: biracial (Black Jamaican, white) gay MC

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Full DisclosureI’ve been wanting to read this book for so long, so when I saw it was available at my library, I got so excited!! My friend Elise’s review of it is also a large part of why I think I’m going to love this book (as her reviews always are with any book).

I haven’t read a book with a character that has HIV, so I’m looking forward to that representation, along with all the other amazing things I’ve heard about it, including its phenomenal writing and character relationships.

⇒ rep: Black bisexual MC with HIV, Asian bisexual SC, Asian asexual lesbian SC

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Let's Talk About LoveI’m just really excited about a Black queer girl because I will always be excited over Black queer girls, and I’ve heard that this is a really cute book! Lots of romance (we’ll see how much of that, I can handle, as a happiness hater…) but also lots of friendship too.

I’ll be honest, I am a bit nervous that I’m not going to like this one, but I do want to still try it out because I’ve been interested in reading Claire Kann’s books for a while now!

⇒ rep: Black biromantic asexual MC

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The Beauty That RemainsThis is a book about grief, which is GREAT because I’ve been feeling so meh about a lot of the books I read recently and I just really want something that’ll make me emotional. I think this is going to be a very character-focused book so I’m excited for that!

Also I just saw that there’s leukemia involved, so now I know I’m going to cry. (If you’re unaware, my mom has had leukemia since 2012, and anything involving cancer or illness is essentially my only trigger in books!)

⇒ rep: Black MC, gay MC, Korean MC

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The Fifth Season (The Broken Earth, #1)I think I read about 140 pages of this earlier this year but wasn’t able to finish because it took me a long time to really get into it—but once I was into it, I couldn’t stop reading. I know I’m having focus problems right now but I’m still hoping that I can get through this? Because it’s award-winning and I’ve heard only the best things about it, and I also really enjoyed what I read!!

(Remembering what I read will also be a challenge… It’s fine, I’ll wing it!)

⇒ rep: Black cast, several queer SCs, polyamory

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An Unkindness of GhostsI’m trying to read more adult, so this is perfect! I read Rivers Solomon’s The Deep earlier this year and enjoyed it, so I hope I like this book from them as well. It’s sci-fi, which I haven’t read in so long, but it looks to be on the heavier side and not as easy to read.

The world in this book sounds really intriguing—there’s a spaceship where the lower decks are reserved for darker-skinned people—and I’m excited to see how this concept will be written!! Their writing in The Deep was beautiful so I have no doubt that this will be beautiful too.

⇒ rep: Black queer (intersex) autistic MC, nonbinary SC

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Steel Crow Saga  Girl, Serpent, Thorn  Forest of Souls (Shamanborn, #1)  The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #1)

  • Steel Crow Saga: I’m checking this out from my library and I genuinely believe it’s going to be a new favorite of mine. I’m trying so hard to lower my expectations because I don’t want to be disappointed but I can’t!!! (Asian f/f)
  • Girl, Serpent, Thorn: I have a physical ARC of this and I am dying to read it!! I read the first few paragraphs because I couldn’t help myself and I’m already in love (Persian f/f)
  • Forest of Souls: I didn’t finish reading this in May, so I have to finish it to review it later this month… (This is not queer!)
  • Percy Jackson: I’m actually feeling like this might be a maybe rather than a definitive yes?? I could reread PJO any time, so if I don’t have enough time for all the books on this list, I probably will just push it back to July.

shall we chat

what’s on your June TBR, if you have one? remember to include Black authors in your reading not just now but throughout the year! also I’ve always been curious: do you enjoy reading TBRs?

(I always feel like TBRs don’t do as well as other posts, which always is a surprise to me because I personally LOVE reading them)

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60 thoughts on “My Revised June Pride TBR: Reading as Many Books by Black Queer Authors As I Can!!

  1. Ahhhhh these are such amazing recommendations, thank you May! My TBR pile is groaning – one positive of the last few weeks is that I’ve discovered so many more books by Black authors that I wouldn’t otherwise have heard of, purely due to the discussions that are being generated by the movement. I totally agree with you – I hope that bloggers continue to support Black authors even when the movement is no longer #trending 💛

    Also – I LOVE reading TBR posts! I always find amazing books to add to my own TBR so they’re among my fave types of posts to read 😍

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ah i’m glad i could add more books to your never-ending tbr 😌 and yes i’m loving the boost in Black authors’ works! it’s very bittersweet to see it from publishers after they’ve promoted only white books but i’m glad they’re finally promoting books that i haven’t seen before. i hope it stays the same and not just now :(

      and yay i’m so happy you love reading tbrs! i enjoy reading them so much, i never understand why others don’t lmao

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m also going to be reading Let’s Talk About Love and I’m so excited!! I actually read Claire Kann’s second book last year – If It Makes You Happy – and it was such a fantastic, summer contemporary 🥰 That’s why I hope that her debut will be just as good, so fingers crossed we both enjoy it 😊 I’ve also been wanting to get to The Fifth Season for so long now as I heard so many good reviews!

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    1. ah i’m not sure if i’ll be able to get to let’s talk about love now, but i hope you enjoy it (if you haven’t already read it!) <3 if it makes you happy also looks so good, i hope i can read it and let's talk about love soon 🥰 and yes!! what i read of the fifth season was super great, i just need to find the motivation to pick it back up and keep reading!

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  3. I really want to read The Black Flamingo! I love books told in verse, and like you, I’ve heard amazing things about it! Plus, I’m in love with that cover!

    I don’t really do TBRs because I’m too much of a mood reader, although I do enjoy reading them! But I definitely want to prioritize You Should See Me in a Crown because it’s Black and f/f and it sounds adorable! I also really want to read Felix Ever After, but I don’t know if I’ll get to it this month because I still need to order myself a copy!

    I hope reading gets easier for you, and that you have a wonderful June!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. the black flamingo was amazing! the verse aspect really stepped it up for me too <3

      ah yeah, this is the only time of year i'll make tbrs!! i'm already failing this tbr though so 😭 and yes you should see me in a crown was so amazing, i hope you enjoy it whenever you get the chance to read it! i think i'm gonna buy felix ever after for black out bestseller and i'm so excited for it 🥺

      Liked by 1 person

  4. i saw the screenshots you posted of your running with lions review on your priv, and i just wanna ask: where is the salty review >:(. JKJK post it whenever you want—or don’t!! i’m sorry the sports gays disappointed you though 😔 and I read a few pages of the fifth season a while ago too! my one brain cell is so intimidated by its complex worldbuilding and storytelling, but i really wanna finish reading it, because n.k. jemisin is so! hyped!, and i know without having read her books that they’re unapologetically Black and queer.
    this post was so fun to read, May! hope you enjoy all of these <3

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I WILL POST IT ON GOODREADS don’t worry!! i’m just… gonna wait a bit because i know some people are wanting to pick it up and i don’t want to discourage anyone when it’s an especially good time to be reading Black authors lmaooo i just feel so bad 😭 and aahh if you ever want to buddy read the fifth season to motivate each other to read it, i would love that!!! i need all the motivation i can get lmao <3

      Liked by 1 person

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