The Avocado’s Favorite LGBT+ Books: The Results

Happy Pride, everyone! Welcome back to the first ever (as far as I know!) poll of The Avocado’s Favorite LGBT+ Books! In the end, 43 lists were submitted, comprising an unbelievable 257 books representing LGBT+ experiences of all stripes and from every corner of the globe (and with a further 35 books receiving honorable mentions). Everyone who participated was passionate about their picks, and while there were some clear favorites, there were many, many more under-read gems – every list submitted contained at least one title unique to that list, totaling 203 of the submitted books. I think all of our reading lists just got much, much longer!

The compiled list is below, and if you want to review the full results you can see them here. Don’t forget to check out last year’s lists of The Avocado’s Favorite LGBT+ Films and The Avocado’s Favorite LGBT+ TV and Web Series, too! A huge thank you to everyone who participated – I can’t wait to read more about your favorites in the comments!

First up, the number of books per decade:

1830s: 1 book

1850s: 1 book

1890s: 1 book

1900s: 2 books

1910s: 1 book

1920s: 2 books

1930s: 2 books

1940s: 4 books

1950s: 5 books

1960s: 5 books

1970s: 10 books

1980s: 19 books

1990s: 26 books

2000s: 26 books

2010s: 88 books

2020s: 64 books

Next, a shoutout to the authors with the greatest number of books appearing on the list:

3 books: Becky Chambers, Patricia Highsmith, Alan Hollinghurst, Casey McQuiston, Sarah Waters

2 books: Charlie Jane Anders, James Baldwin, Michael Chabon, Kieron Gillen, Alexis Hall, TJ Klune, Larry Kramer, Ann Leckie, Mackenzi Lee, David Levithan, Grant Morrison, Kathryn Ormsbee, Natasha Pulley, Greg Rucka, Meredith Russo, Brian Selznick, Samantha Shannon, ND Stevenson, Brian K Vaughan, Nghi Vo, Meryl Wilsner, Jeanette Winterson, Virginia Woolf

Finally, without further ado, I am proud to present our complete Favorite LGBT+ Books:

8 lists

Fun Home by Alison Bechdel, 2006

Fun Home

The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller, 2011

The Song of Achilles.

Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin, 1978

Tales of the City

7 lists

The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, 1890

The Picture of Dorian Gray

6 lists

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers, 2014

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet

5 lists

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon, 2000

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay

Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir, 2019

Gideon the Ninth

Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin, 1956

Giovanni’s Room

Maurice by EM Forster, 1971


4 lists

Brokeback Mountain by Annie Proulx, 1997

Brokeback Mountain

The Color Purple by Alice Walker, 1982

The Color Purple

Fingersmith by Sarah Waters, 2002


The Price of Salt (or Carol) by Patricia Highsmith, 1952

The Price of Salt

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston, 2019

Red, White & Royal Blue

3 lists

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz, 2012

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell, 2015

The Celluloid Closet: Homosexuality in the Movies by Vito Russo, 1981

The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune, 2020

Less by Andrew Sean Greer, 2017

Monstrous Regiment by Terry Pratchett, 2003

The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters, 2014

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid, 2017

A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood, 1964

This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone, 2019

Young Avengers by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie, 2013-2014

2 lists

Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie, 2013

Angels in America by Tony Kushner, 1992

Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall, 2020

Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote, 1958

Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waush, 1945

Call Me By Your Name by Andre Aciman, 2007

Dancer from the Dance by Andrew Holleran, 1978

Gender Queer by Maia Kobabe, 2019

Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado, 2017

Hero by Perry Moore, 2007

The Invisibles by Grant Morrison, 1994-2000

The Language of Seabirds by Will Taylor, 2022

The Left Hand of Darkness by Urusula K LeGuin, 1969

Light from Eponymous Stars by Ryka Aoki, 2021

Like People in History by Felipe Picano, 1995

Love and Rockets by Jamie and Gilbert Hernandez, 1981-present

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by Jon Berendt, 1994

The Mysteries of Pittsburgh by Michael Chabon, 1988

On a Sunbeam by Tillie Walden, 2018

Orlando by Virginia Woolf, 1928

Paper Girls by Brian K Vaughan and Cliff Chiang, 2015-2019

The Passion by Jeanette Winterson, 1987

Saga by Brian K Vaughan and Fiona Staples, 2012-present

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern, 2019

Stuck Rubber Baby by Howard Cruse, 1995

Tin Man by Sarah Winman, 2017

When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain by Nghi Vo, 2020

Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and Scapegoating of Femininity by Julia Serrano, 2007

Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan, 2010

1 list

Absolutely Remarkable Thing, AnGreen, Hank2018
Ace: What Asexuality Reveals About Desire, Society, and the Meaning of SexChen, Angela2020
Alan Cole Doesn’t DanceBell, Eric2018
Alien Echo, TheGrant, Mira2019
All the Birds in the SkyAnders, Charlie Jane2016
Almost PerfectKatcher, Brian2009
And the Band Played OnShilts, Randy1987
Angela: Asgard’s Assassin, Vol. 1Gillen, Kieron and Marguerite Bennett2015
Annie On My MindGarden, Nancy1982
Answer, TheSugar, Rebecca2016
As Meat Loves SaltMcCann, Maria2002
Asumi-Chan is Interested in Lesbian Brothels!Itsuki, Kuro2020-present
At Swim, Two BoysO’Neill, Jamie2001
Autobiography of RedCarson, Anne1998
Batwoman: ElegyRucka, Greg and JH Williams III2010
Be Gay, Do ComicsNib, The2020
Beautiful ThingHarvey, Jonathan1996
Benny’s True ColorsPaulson, Norene2020
BirthdayRusso, Meredith2019
Blood of Olympus, TheRiordan, Rick2014
Bloom Into YouNakatani, Nio2015-2019
Bone-Shard Daughter, TheStewart, Andrea2020
Broadway NightsRudetsky, Seth2007
Bruising of Qilwa, TheJamnia, Naseem2022
Burning RosesHuang, SL2020
Candidly ClineOrmsbee, Kathryn2021
Captains of the SandAmado, Jorge1937
Cardcaptor SakuraCLAMP1996-2000
Care of: Letters, Connections, and CuresCoyote, Ivan E.2001
Cemetery BoysThomas, Aiden2020
Charm Offensive, TheCochrun, Alison2021
Cheer Up: Love and PompomsFrasier, Crystal, Oscar O. Jupiter, and Val Wise2021
Chelsea GirlsMyles, Eileen1994
City and the Pillar, TheVidal, Gore1948
City in the Middle of the Night, TheAnders, Charlie Jane2019
City of NightRechy, John1963
Civil War of Amos Abernathy, TheLeali, Michael2022
Collected Poems, TheO’Hara, Frank1971
Come, Thou TortoiseGrant, Jessica2009
Conventionally YoursAlbert, Annabeth2020
Day of Fallen Night, AShannon, Samantha2023
Delilah Green Doesn’t CareBlake, Ashley Herring2022
DōkyūseiNakamura, Asumiko2006
Don LeonAnonymous1830
Doom PatrolMorrison, Grant1989-1993
Dowry of Blood, AGibson, ST2022
Dragons Don’t Know ParadiseAbreu, Caio Fernando1988
Dream BoyGrimsley, Jim1995
Drum Roll, PleaseBigelow, Lisa Jenn2018
End of Eddy, TheLouis, Edouard2014
Enemies of the StateBauer, Tal2016
Even If It Was Just Once, I Regret ItMiyahara, Miyako2019-2021
Fa**otsKramer, Larry1978
Fair PlayJansson, Tove1989
Fairly Honorable Defeat, AMurdoch, Iris1970
Fall On Your KneesMacDonald, Ann-Marie1996
Family Book, TheParr, Todd2003
Fiancée Farce, TheBellefleur, Alexandra2023
Finding Batman (in DC Pride #1)Conroy, Kevin and J. Bone2022
Fire Next TimeBaldwin, James1963
Five Six Seven NateFederle, Tim2014
FreshwaterEmezi, Akwaeke2018
Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop CafeFlagg, Fannie1987
Front Runner, TheWarren, Patricia Nell1974
Garden God, TheReid, Forrest1905
Gay Heritage Project, TheAtkins, Damien, Paul Dunn, and Andrew Kushnir2018
GearbreakersMikuta, Zoe Hana2021
Gender TroubleButler, Judith1990
Gentleman Jole and the Red QueenBujold, Louise McMaster2016
Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue, TheLee, Mackenzi2017
Girl Friends: The Complete Collection 2Morinaga, Milk2013
givenKizu, Natsuki2014-present
Glass Woman, TheLea, Caroline2019
Good Kings Bad KingsNussbaum, Susan2013
Gotham CentralRucka, Greg, Ed Brubaker, and Michael Lark2002-2006
Grandad’s CamperWoodgate, Harry2021
Grasshopper JungleSmith, Andrew A.2014
Guncle, TheRowley, Steven2021
Guy She Was Interested in Wasn’t a Guy at All, TheArai, Sumiko2022-present
Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake DatingJaigirdar, Adiba2021
Heartbreak BoysGreen, Simon James2020
HeartstopperOseman, Alice2019-present
HildGriffith, Nicola2013
Homosexuality and CivilizationCrompton, Louis2003
Honey GirlRogers, Morgan2021
Honeys, TheLa Sala, Ryan2022
How Do We Relationship?tmfly2018-present
How I Learned to SnapRead, Kirk2001
How to Be BothSmith, Ali2014
HowlGinsberg, Allen1956
Hunger Makes Me a Modern GirlBrownstein, Carrie2015
I Have a Feeling We’re Not in Kansas AnymoreMordden, Ethan1996
I Kissed Shara WheelerMcQuiston, Casey2022
I’m Gay for My Living Billionaire Jet PlaneTingle, Chuck2015
I’m Not a GirlLyons, Maddox2020
If I Was Your GirlRusso, Meredith2016
In Search of Lost TimeProust, Marcel1913-1927
James Tiptree Jr.: The Double Life of Alice B. SheldonPhilipps, Julie2006
January FifteenthSwirsky, Rachel2022
Jasmine Throne, TheSuri, Tasha2021
JeffreyRudnick, Paul1994
Joseph and His BrothersMann, Thomas1933
Julian is a MermaidLove, Jessica2018
Kaguhara’s Fetish NotebookKito, Sakeru2022-present
KaleidoscopeSelznick, Brian2021
Kingdoms, ThePulley, Natasha2021
Kiss Number 8Venable, Colleen AF2019
Kyou Kara MiraiYoshitomi, Akihito2019-2023
Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy, TheLee, Mackenzi2018
Lanterns on the LeveePercy, William1941
Last Leaf, TheHenry, O.1905
Last Night at the Telegraph ClubLo, Malinda2021
Leather Boys, TheFreeman, Gillian1961
Leaves of GrassWhitman, Walt1855 (first pub.)
Leopold’s LeotardWallace, Rhiannon2021
Letter to Harvey Milk, ANewman, Lesléa1988
Line of Beauty, TheHollinghurst, Alan2004
Listen Up: Voices from the Next Femininst GenerationFindlen, Barbara, ed.1955
Little Foxes Took Up MatchesKazbek, Katya2022
Little Life, AYanagihara, Hanya2015
Lost Future of Pepperharrow, ThePulley, Natasha2020
Love & Other DisastersKelly, Anita2022
Lumberjanes, Vol. 1: Beware the Kitten HolyEllis, Grace, Shannon Waters and ND Stevenson2014
Magic Fish, TheNguyen, Trang Le2020
Magpie Lord, TheCharles, KJ2013
Male Colors: The Construction of Homosexuality in Tokugawa JapanLeupp, Gary1997
Man AliveMcBee, Thomas Page2014
Marvellous Light, AMarske, Freya2021
Marvels, TheSelznick, Brian2015
Me Talk Pretty One DaySedaris, David2000
MelissaGino, Alex2015
Mistakes Were MadeWilsner, Meryl2022
Mo Dao Zu ShiMo Xiang Tong Xiu2015
MooncakesWalker, Suzanne and Wendy Xu2019
MOONFACEKim, James2019
Mrs. DallowayWoolf, Virginia1925
My Dear LassHu, Teleixi (Tracy)2022-present
My Sister DaisyKarlsson, Adria2021
NevadaBinnie, Imogen2013
Night Ocean, TheLaFarge, Paul2017
NightswimmerOlshan, Joseph1994
NimonaStevenson, ND2015
Normal Heart, TheKramer, Larry1985
Of Fire and StarsCoulthurst, Audrey2016
Ojja-Wojja, TheVisaggio, Magdalene2023
One Last StopMcQuiston, Casey2021
One Man GuyBarakiva, Michael2014
Orchid Trilogy, TheBrooke, Jocelyn1948-1950
Our Dining TableMita, Ori2018
Pages Passed from Hand to HandMitchell, Mark and David Leavitt, eds.1997
PansiesHall, Alexis2016
Patricia Highsmith: Her Diaries and JournalsHighsmith, Patricia2021
Patrick’s Polka-Dot TightsMcClurry, Kristen2020
Perks of Being a Wallflower, TheChbosky, Stephen1999
Prayer for the Crown-Shy, AChambers, Becky2022
Priory of the Orange Tree, TheShannon, Samantha2019
Privilege of the Sword, TheKushner, Ellen2006
Psalm for the Wild-Built, AChambers, Becky2021
Ranma 1/2Takahashi, Rumiko1987-1996
Raven Tower, TheLeckie, Ann2019
Real Riley Mayes, TheElliott, Rachel2022
Revolutionary Girl UtenaSaito, Chiho1996-1998
SacramentBarker, Clive1995
Sailor MoonTakeuchi, Naoko1991-1997
SellevisionBurroughs, Augusten2000
Sexing the CherryWinterson, Jeanette1989
She Who Became the SunParker-Chan, Shelly2021
Significant OtherHarmon, Joshua2018
Siren QueenVo, Nghi2022
So Far from GodCastillo, Ana1993
Sodom on the ThamesKaplan, Morris2005
Something to Talk AboutWilsner, Meryl2020
SovereignDaniels, April2017
Sparsholt Affair, TheHollinghurst, Alan2017
Star Smashers of the Galaxy RangersHarrison, Harry1973
Stone Butch BluesFineberg, Leslie1993
Stop!! Hibari-KunEguchi, Hisashi1981
Summer We Got Free, TheMcKenzie, Mia2012
Surrender Your SonsSass, Adam2020
Swimming-Pool Library, TheHollinghurst, Alan1988
T*****: Confessions of Punk Rock’s Most Infamous Anarchist SelloutGrace, Laura Jane2016
Talented Mr. Ripley, TheHighsmith, Patricia1955
Tash Hearts TolstoyOrmsbee, Kathryn2017
Three Things About ElsieCannon, Joanna2018
Tinderbox: The Untold Story of the Up Stairs Lounge Fire and the Rise of Gay LiberationFieseler, Robert W.2018
Tipping the VelvetWaters, Sarah1998
Tramps and VagabondsGray, Aster Glenn2022
True QueenCho, Zen2019
Tune in Tokyo: The Gaijin DiariesAnderson, Tim2010
Twyborn Affair, TheWhite, Patrick1979
Under the Whispering DoorKlune, TJ2021
Unwanted, TheRicker, Jeffrey2014
ValenciaTea, Michelle2000
Wanting Life, TheRader, Mark2020
Weetzie BatBlock, Francesca Lia1989
Where We Go from HereRocha, Lucas2018
Who’s Your Real Mom?Green, Bernadette2020
Woman on the Edge of TimePiercy, Marge1976
Women Who Hate Me, The: Poetry, 1980-1990Allison, Dorothy1991
World of Normal Boys, TheSoehnlein, KM2000
Yentl the Yeshiva BoySinger, Isaac Bashevis1983
You Know Me WellLevithan, David and Nina LaCour2016
You Should See Me in a CrownJohnson, Leah2020