|The Rainbow Project website (I do love how they link to this blog in their "Stay Tuned" sidebar!)|
The 2014 Rainbow Project Reading List, a project of the American Library Assocation's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Round Table (GLBTRT) and Social Responsibilities Round Table (SSRT), is a wonderful resource and powerful tool to:
Let readers know what's really great in terms of kid and teen books with LGBTQ characters and themes that was published last year (2013) and
Give librarians and other professionals who buy books for library collections a list of LGBTQ-inclusive and themed books recommended by the American Library Association as being "high quality."
This year, 30 books were selected out of 150, and here are the Rainbow List's top ten (noted with a star, not in order)
*Federle, Tim. Better Nate than Ever. 2013. 275p. Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, $16.99 (9781442446892). Grades 4 and up.
Thirteen-year-old Nate runs away from his small town in Pennsylvania to New York City to audition for E.T. the Musical. With the help of his best friend, can he come back home before anyone notices he’s gone?
Teen Non Fiction
*Bornstein, Kate. My New Gender Workbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Achieving World Peace Through Gender Anarchy and Sex Positivity. 2013. 312p. Routledge, $39.95. (9780415538657). Grades 7 and up.
This updated edition of Bornstein’s original gender workbook shows the reader how to deconstruct not only gender, but other societal values and morals with candidness, compassion and humor.
*Setterington, Ken. Branded by the Pink Triangle. 2013. 158p. Second Story Press, $15.95. (9781926920962). Grades 9 and up.
Jews were not the only ones persecuted and executed by the Nazis in World War II. Instead of a Star of David, homosexual men were marked with a pink triangle, which now stands as an international symbol for gay rights.
*Block, Francesca Lia. Love in the Time of Global Warming. 2013. 240p. Henry Holt and Co., $16.99 (0805096272). Grades 9-12.
In post-apocalyptic Los Angeles, Penelope (Pen) has lost everything, and everyone, she’s ever cared about. In this Odyssey-esque journey, Pen embarks on a search for her family, finding unexpected adventures and survivors along the way.
*Clark, Kristin Elizabeth. Freakboy. 2013. 448p. Farrar Straus Giroux $18.99 (9780374324728). Grades 7 and up.
Three lives intertwine: Angel, a transwoman who works at an LGBTQ center for teens; Vanessa, a high school girl who’s on the wrestling team; and Brendan, Vanessa’s boyfriend who has just started having dreams that he is actually a she. Brendan feels at home in his female-bodied dreams, but what does that mean for his relationship with Vanessa, and how can Angel help him?
*Dos Santos, Steven. The Culling. 2013. 420p. Flux, $9.99 (9780738735375). Grades 9-12.
In a post-apocalyptic America, the government has absolute control of its people, complete with a barbaric and gruesome tradition known as Recruitment Day. Lucian “Lucky” Sparks thinks his boyfriend, Cassius, will save him from being selected as a Recruit, but when Cassius proves untrustworthy Lucky must fight for his life.
*Egloff, Z. Leap. 2013. 223p. Bywater Books, $14.95. (978-1612940236). Grades 9 and up.
In the summer of 1979, Rowan Marks is just waiting to leave for college. In the meantime, she deals with her disconnected family, her best friend Danny who is in love with her, and stuck up, closed-off Catherine.
*Farizan, Sara. If You Could Be Mine. 2013. 256p. Algonquin Young Readers, $16.99 (9781616202514). Grades 9 and up.
Sahar and Nasrin are two women in love with each other whose lives are complicated by the fact that they live in Iran, where homosexuality is forbidden. When Nasrin’s parents arrange for her to be married to a handsome doctor, Sahar comes up with a risky plan to save their relationship.
*Johnson, Alaya Dawn. The Summer Prince. 2013. 304p. Arthur A. Levine Books, $17.99 (9780545520775). Grades 9 and up.
Set in futuristic Brazil, the people of the city of Palmares Tres have elected a new Summer King, Enki. Everyone is in love with him, including June who knows better then to get tangled up with a man who she knows is destined to die.
*Lam, Laura. Pantomime. 2013. 400p. Strange Chemistry, $9.99 (9781908844378). Grades 9 and up.
Fleeing from her life of nobility, marriage and forced gender, Iphigenia joins the Circus of Magic, facing issues of identity that stretch beyond anyone’s imagination.
Congratulations to everyone who made the Rainbow List!
And for the rest of us, Happy Reading!