Summer Learning: Read With Pride

Summer Learning is moving forward and we've got a list to help inspire your reading and learning this summer. Sign up for Summer Learning to log your reading and win prizes. This week we celebrate Pride Month with a selection of books featuring LGBTQIA+ characters and themes.

Representation in popular media is important, whether in a movie or a book. When someone can identify with a character it can help them engage with the story and can even boost self esteem by changing the way an individual sees themselves. Reading stories with different points of view also fosters empathy and understanding.

While there are no doubt still challenges and biased attitudes LGBTQIA+ people face, let's celebrate the progress that has been made by people belonging to the LGBTQIA+ community and educate ourselves this Pride month with these great reads! Check out the full, multigenerational booklist here.

Pride Picks in Picture Books (Pre-Readers to Readers)

'Twas the Night Before Pride, book cover
The Rainbow Parade, book cover
Phoenix Gets Greater, book cover

It wasn't that long ago that there was a gap of literature in general featuring LGBTQ+ characters and themes, so it is wonderful to see so many picture book titles that relate to Pride Month. This is a mix of fiction and nonfiction, with true stories and new fairy tales. These books can be used to start a variety of different conversations to help teach understanding and acceptance of both the self and others.

Pride Picks in Middle Grade (Children to Pre-Teens)

 Moonflower, book cover
Kapaemahu, book cover
Camp Quiltbag, book cover

These books are a little longer and best for confident readers and pre-teens. They not only grant us access to different perspectives of those during moments of self discovery and coming of age, but begin to introduce more literally some of the issues, challenges, and attitudes that affect individuals that are grappling with understanding their own identities.

Pride Picks in YA Books (Teens)

The Edge of Being, book cover
A Scatter of Light, book cover
The Sunbearer Trials, book cover

This selection of books is roughly intended for ages 12-17, but of course can work for a precocious younger reader and anyone older as well. For the Teen or Young Adult (YA) there is definitely a growing representation of the LGBTQ+ community in literature, and we have the pleasure of being introduced to a number of inspiring voices, both real and imagined. From protagonists to side kicks to side characters, there are many ways to read and celebrate Pride with YA fiction.

Pride Picks for Adults

Confidence, book cover
Lavender House, book cover
All Down Darkness Wide, book cover

Last but not least, our Pride Picks for Adults are here, with a combination of fiction and non-fiction books.

Whether it is Pride Month or not, these books are good reads any time of year. As always, if you're looking for more to read check out other great recommendations on our Staff Picks Page. If you're looking for more ways to participate in Summer Learning, leave a book review on Beanstack (the site that powers our Summer Learning program). There is a chance we may feature your review in an upcoming blog!


(Information Updated: May 2024)