LGBT fiction (Lesbian-Gay-Bisexual-Transsexual) literature has a long and fascinating history, with some remarkable and engaging texts for readers of all gender and sexual identities.
As part of its "Seattle Picks" series, the Seattle Public Library came up with a comprehensive list of 20 essential reads, with some big names and key texts represented.
Krakow Melt by Daniel Allen Cox
Homophobia is still alive in 2005 Poland, igniting the ire of artist Radek, who beings to stage creative protests. However, his bisexuality causes conflict in this novel replete with references to Pink Floyd and Pope John Paul II.
Stuck Rubber Baby by Howard Cruse
As a young, white gay man coming of age during the Civil Rights era, Toland Polk grapples with the turbulent racial politics of his Southern hometown and his growing awareness of his sexuality in this classic graphic novel.
The Sealed Letter by Emma Donoghue
Courtroom drama surrounding a scandalous divorce in Victorian England stirs up a friendship between the adulterous wife and her trailblazing feminist friend in this engrossing historical novel.
Light Fell by Evan Fallenberg
Twenty years ago, Joseph left his wife and five sons to travel to Israel when he fell in love with a married rabbi. For his 50th birthday, Joseph's sons come to Tel Aviv where he hopes to reconcile his relationship with them.
What We Remember by Michael Thomas Ford
Sheriff Daniel McCloud has been missing for seven years when his body is found, sending shockwaves through the community as the investigation begins to tear his family apart and long-buried secrets emerge.
Stray Dog Winter by David Francis
Darcy Bright leaves Australia to meet his half-sister Fin in the Soviet Union in 1984. Darcy's stay gets complicated when he has an affair with the son of a high-ranking official.
The Neighbors Are Watching by Debra Ginsberg
There are some literal and figurative wildfires in the Santa Ana suburbs where a man's secret daughter shows up pregnant and a lesbian couple find succor together when their children are reclaimed by their ex-husbands.
Map of Ireland by Stephanie Grant
During the 1974 desegregation of Boston schools, Ann, an African-American teenager, finds that her crush on her French teacher and her relationship with a white girl place her in the middle of a conflagration of racial and sexual politics.
We Disappear by Scott Heim
Scott leaves New York to return home to Kansas to care for his cancer-weakened mother. Scott, addicted to meth, becomes involved in a mystery in his community as he delvers into his mother's obsession with missing children.
Cut Away by Catherine Kirkwood
Olivia, a runaway who disappears, is the thread that connects a transgendered woman, a lesbian plastic surgeon and the woman who kidnapped Olivia as a baby and raised her as her own.
Like Son by Felicia Luna Lemus
Frank Cruz, born Francisca, leaves California for New york where he finds love with the beautiful, mysterious Nathalie, whose frequent disappearances make Frank reexamine his past and what he wants from love.
Beggar of Love by Lee Lynch
Jefferson's relationship with Ginger has not stopped her from having other lovers, but suddenly she begins to question the nature of love and her addiction to danger.
Insignificant Others by Stephen McCauley
Boston couple Richard and his partner Conrad have each other, but they also have lovers on the side. Richard's other "husband," Ben, is a married man. Are these others really so insignificant?
Spinning Tropics by Aska Mochizuki
Hiro leaves Japan to teach in Vietnam, where she finds herself failing for Yun, a young female student in her class, in this lusty debut about forbidden love.
The Moonlit Earth by Christopher Rice
When her gay flight attendant brother disappears with a suspected terrorist in the wake of a bombing in Hong Kong, Megan finds herself embroiled in a deadly race for the truth.
Between Boyfriends by Michael Salvatore
TV soap opera producer Steven had a bad breakup, but he's still determined to find Potential Relationship Material. Will he let his mom and friends' advice and opinions get in the way of finding "the one"?
The More I Owe You by Michael Sledge
This historical novel explores the steamy romance between poet Elizabeth Bishop and Brazilian Lota de Macedo Soares that began in the 1950s, a relationship complicated by Elizabeth's alcoholism and Lota's fiery temper.
Palimpsest by Catherynne M. Valente
In this sensual fantasy, four travelers make their to Palimpsest, a place accessible only to those who have the passport, a tattoo you can receive only after having sex with one who also bears the mark.
One Last Kiss by Mary Wilbon
African-American lesbian P.I. Cassandra Slick, a former cop, left the force at her girlfriend's urging, but returns to help solve the murder of a black prostitute when a homophobic ex-colleague becomes a suspect.
The Stone Gods by Jeanette Winterson
Near-future scientist Billie Crusoe travels across different times and planets, exploring humankind's obsession with physical perfection even as it despoils the environment, and finds love with a "Robo sapien," Spike.