Out on the Shelf (LGBTQ)

Books for Teens with LGBTQ characters and issues.


Image of Simon Vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda Book Cover.
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Becky Albertalli (YA ALBERTALLI)
Sixteen-year-old, not-so-openly-gay Simon Spier is blackmailed into playing wingman for his classmate or else his sexual identity will be revealed. (Grade 8+)
Image of Alex As Well Book Cover.
Alex as Well
Alyssa Brugman (YA BRUGMAN)
Raised as a boy, fourteen-year-old Alex, who has both male and female parts, rejects hormonal medications and decides to live as a girl. (Grade 10+)
Image of The Perks of Being a Wallflower Book Cover.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Stephen Chbosky (YA CHBOSKY)
“I am writing to you because she said you listen and understand and didn’t try to sleep with that person even though you could have.” (Grade 8+)
Image of The Miseducation of Cameron Post Book Cover.
The Miseducation of Cameron Post
Emily M. Danforth (YA DANFORTH)
The very day Cameron kisses her best friend, Irene, her parents are killed in a car accident and Cameron has to deal with her guilt, loss, and being a lesbian in a conservative community. (Grade 10+)
Image of Symptoms of Being Human Book Cover.
Symptoms of Being Human
Jeff Garvin (YA GARVIN)
A gender-fluid teen who struggles with identity creates a blog on the subject that goes viral and faces hazing.
(Grade 9+)
Image of My Year Zero Book Cover.
My Year Zero
Rachel Gold (YA GOLD)
When Lauren gets invited to an online science fiction story collaboration in Twin Cities, she receives attention from two different girls, charming Sierra and troublesome Blake. (Grade 10+)
Image of Will Grayson, Will Grayson Book Cover.
Will Grayson, Will Grayson
John Green & David Levithan (YA GREEN)
Will’s best friend is Tiny, “the world’s largest person who is really, really gay.” Now Will’s got to play matchmaker! (Grade 9+)
Image of None of the Above Book Cover.
None of the Above
I.W. Gregario (YA GREGARIO)
A teenage girl discovers she’s intersex--Find out what happens when her secret’s revealed to the entire school. (Grade 9+)
Image Research for the Social Improvement and General Betterment... Book Cover.
Research for the Social Improvement and General Betterment of Lydia Goldblatt & Julie Graham-Chang [Series]
Amy Ignatow (YA IGNATOW)
Popularity Papers series. Hilarious scrapbook-style series follows two best friends—Julie who lives with her two dads and Lydia who lives with her mom and sister— on their quest for popularity in junior high. (Grades 4-6)
Image of Ask the Passengers Book Cover.
Ask the Passengers
A.S. King (YA KING)
Astrid copes with her town's gossip and narrow-mindedness by staring at the sky and imagining that she's sending love to the passengers in the airplanes flying high over her backyard. Maybe they'll know what to do with it.
(Grade 10+)
Image of Everything Leads To You Book Cover.
Everything Leads to You
Nina LaCour (YA LACOUR)
When and abandoned letter brings Emi and Ava together, it opens up the possibilities for good fortune, love and loss. (Grade 9+)
Image of Boy Meets Boy Book Cover.
Boy Meets Boy
David Levithan (YA LEVITHAN)
Paul meets Noah, who’s totally the guy for him. But now Paul’s old boyfriend wants Paul back. (Grade 8+)
Image of Ash Book Cover.
Ash [Has a Prequel]
Malinda Lo (YA LO)
Ash must choose between the handsome fairy cursed to love her and the King’s Huntress whom she loves.
(Grade 8+)
Image of Hero Book Cover.
Perry Moore (YA MOORE)
Thom may seem like a mild-mannered basketball star… but he’s hiding a secret: he’s a superhero. He’s also gay. (Grade 9+)
Image of Not Otherwise Specified Book Cover.
Not Otherwise Specified
Hannah Moskowitz (YA MOSKOWITZ)
Auditioning for a New York City performing arts high school could help Etta escape from her Nebraska all-girl school, where she's not gay enough for her former friends or thin enough for ballet. (Grade 9+)
Image of I'll Give You The Sun Book Cover.
I’ll Give You the Sun
Jandy Nelson (YA NELSON)
A beautifully written story, told by twins, Noah and Jude. Exploring sexuality, first love, family, loss and art.
(Grade 9+)
Image of Gracefully Grayson Book Cover.
Gracefully Grayson
Ami Polonsky (YA POLONSKY)
Doctors say he is a boy, but secretly sixth grader, Grayson, identifies as a girl. Grayson struggles with sharing this secret, but getting the leading role in a school play might just help. (Grade 6+)
Image of Juliet Takes a Breath Book Cover.
Juliet Takes a Breath
Gabby Rivera (YA RIVERA)
Juliet Milagros Palante is leaving the Bronx and headed to Portland, Oregon. She just came out to her family and isn't sure if her mom will ever speak to her again. But Juliet has a plan, sort of, one that's going to help her figure out this whole "Puerto Rican lesbian" thing. (Grade 9+)
Image of Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe Book Cover.
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
Benjamin Alire Sáenz (YA SÁENZ)
15 year-old Ari is an angry loner with a brother in prison. Then he meets Dante, and their friendship leads Ari to question his family, his identity, and his sexuality. (Grade 9+).
Image of The Marvels Book Cover.
The Marvels
Brian Selznick (YA SELZNICK)
In 1766, a boy, Billy Marvel is shipwrecked, rescued, and becomes the patriarch of a brilliant family of actors in London. Beautiful illustrations! (Grade 4+)
Image of History is All You Left Me Book Cover.
History is All You Left Me
Adam Silvera (YA SILVERA)
Secrets are revealed as OCD-afflicted Griffin grieves for his first love, Theo, who died in a drowning accident.
(Grade 9+)
Image of In Her Skin Book Cover.
In Her Skin: Growing up Trans
Trina Sotira (YA SOTIRA)
Tirzah struggles to gain the confidence to live as Troy, while dealing with a complicated love interest. (Grade 6+)
Image of What We Left Behind Book Cover.
What We Left Behind
Robin Talley (YA TALLEY)
Toni and Gretchen are deeply in love. But their relationship is put to the test when they go to separate colleges and Toni, who identifies as genderqueer, finds belonging in a transgender group. (Grade 10+)
Image of Drama Book Cover
Drama [Graphic Novel]
Raina Telgemeier (YA TELGEMEIER)
Callie rides an emotional roller coaster while serving on the stage crew for a middle school production of 'Moon Over Mississippi.’ (Grade 5+)


Image of Speaking Out Book Cover.
Speaking Out: Queer Youth in Focus
Rachelle Smith (306.7608 SMI)
A photographic essay that explores a spectrum of experiences told from the perspective of diverse LGBTQ youth, ages 14-24. (Grades 10-12)
Image of Stonewall Book Cover.
Stonewall: Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights
Ann Bausum (306.766 BAU)
A retelling of the Stonewall riots of 1969, introducing teen readers to the decades-long struggle for gay rights.
(Grade 9+)
Image of GLBTQ Book Cover.
GLBTQ: The Survival Guide for Queer & Questioning Teens
Kelly Huegel (306.766 HUG 2011)
Discovering that you, or someone you love, might be GLBTQ is a revelation. Accepting it is a process. One thing that can help that process is information. You can find it here. (Grade 7+)
Image of It Gets Better Book Cover.
It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying, and Creating a Life Worth Living
Dan Savage and Terry Miller (306.766 ITG)
A collection of essays and testimonials written by celebrities, political leaders and everyday people stemming from a Youtube project to better the lives of LGBT youth. (Grade 9+)
Image of Some Assembly Required Book Cover.
Some Assembly Required
Arin Andrews (306.768 AND)
Seventeen-year-old Arin shares all the hilarious, painful, and poignant details of undergoing gender reassignment as a high school student. (Grade 9+)
Image of Beyond Magenta Book Cover.
Beyond Magenta
Susan Kuklin (306.768 KUK)
Six young adults share their personal stories of how they came to identify as transgender or gender-neutral individuals. (Grade 9+)
Image of Being Jazz Book Cover.
Being Jazz: My Life as a (Transgender) Teen
Jazz Jennings (921 JENNINGS)
Teen activist and trailblazer Jazz Jennings shares her very public transgender journey, as she inspires people to accept the differences in others while they embrace their own truths. (Grade 6+)