Pride 2024: Top Queer Literature Books

Looking for your next LGBTQIA+ read this Pride month? We've got you!

Written byHolly Barrow
Published on
Read time4 min read

With Pride month here, there’s no better time to celebrate the richness and diversity of queer literature!

Whether you’re a fan of memoirs or love to get lost in fantasy, there’s something for everyone when it comes to queer lit, and we’ve compiled a list of some of our top picks for 2024… 

Best of all, if you choose to shop at Waterstones when treating yourself to some new books, you can earn money back with your TOTUM Cashback card - you’ll earn a generous 8% back each time you shop there!

But back to our recommendations, here are the books we think you should have on your radar this Pride month… 

1. Revolutionary Acts - Jason Okundaye


This landmark work from journalist Jason Okundaye spans the history of South London's queer, Black community through the perspectives and experiences of six radicals who were among the first out Black gay men in Britain. 

Through meaningful conversations with an elder generation of Black gay men who lived and fought against the peak of the AIDS epidemic among various other political fights, Okundaye traces their journeys and their arrivals to South London through the seventies, eighties and nineties from the present day. 

Revolutionary Acts paints a picture of what it means and has meant over the years to be Black and gay in Britain, with each story marked by resilience and self-determination. 

2. Greta & Valdin - Rebecca K Reilly


This wonderful debut novel from Rebecca K Reilly follows two titular siblings of Māori and Russian descent as they navigate multiracial identity, queerness and unattainable love interests in present-day New Zealand.

The siblings - who share an unbreakable but at times tumultuous bond - face their own individual romantic and professional challenges, with Valdin still in love with his ex-boyfriend and Greta falling for fellow English tutor Holly who appears to be taking advantage of her feelings. 

With a narrative that is as humorous as it is heartfelt, Greta & Valdin is a compelling exploration of modern relationships and the search for belonging.

3. Most Ardently - Gabe Cole Novoa


This incredible young-adult reimagining of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice is one for fans of the classics with a modern twist. 

Following young trans boy Oliver Bennet in early 1800s London as he struggles with feeling trapped inside a body and identity that is not his own - the one the rest of the world sees - this spin on Austen’s beloved tale explores the risks and hardship it takes to live authentically. 

With the world viewing Oliver as a girl named Elizabeth, he feels forced to perform on a daily basis - mingling at balls wearing pretty dresses, entertaining suitors regardless of his interest in them, and ultimately becoming someone's wife.

But as he spends more time as his true self away from his friends and family, he must choose between settling for safety, security and a life of pretending to be something he's not, or risking it all for a slim chance at freedom, love and a life that can be truly his own.

4. Like Happiness - Ursula Villarreal-Moura


Like Happiness is a debut, coming-of-age novel that delves into gender, sexuality, racial identity, and the charged power dynamics of fame. It follows Tatum Vega, a woman who years ago shared a destructive relationship with a famous author named M. Domínguez.

Vega has long since moved on with her partner Vera when she gets a call from a reporter asking for an interview, as Domínguez has been accused of sexual assault.

What follows is a shocking unravelling of what really happened between Vega and Domínguez all those years ago, explored through a letter she writes for him which takes us back to the decade she spent in New York City and the complex, destructive relationship they had. 

5. Blessings - Chukwuebuka Ibeh

This brand new debut from Chukwuebuka Ibeh is set in post-military Nigeria and follows Obiefuna - a teenage boy who is sent away to boarding school after his father witnesses him in an intimate moment with another boy.

This powerful yet tender novel asks how to live freely in a country that forbids one’s truest self, with Nigeria teetering on the brink of criminalising same-sex relationships.

Told from the alternating perspectives of Obiefuna as he struggles to adjust to his new school's strict hierarchy and his mother, Uzoamaka, who is contending with the absence of her son and her husband's cryptic reasons for sending him away, Blessings is a moving story of how love flourishes in the face of oppression.

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