Review: Queer Heroes: Meet 53 LGBTQ Heroes From Past and Present!

Title: Queer Heroes: Meet 53 LGBTQ Heroes From Past and Present!
Author: Arabelle Sicardi, Sarah Tanat-Jones (illustrator)
Genre: Nonfiction, LGBTQ
Publisher: Wide Eyed Editions
Source: Publisher
Format: Ebook
Release Date: September 17, 2019
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

This beautiful, bold book celebrates the achievements of LGBT people through history and from around the world. It features full-color portraits of a diverse selection of 52 inspirational role models accompanied by short biographies that focus on their incredible successes, from Freddie Mercury’s contribution to music to Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa. Published to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, this title will show children that anything is possible. 

Review:

This book is a great collection of inspiring queer people.

All of the people featured in this book are queer. Some are gay or lesbians, while others are bisexual or transgender. I knew that a few of the people were queer, such as Alan Turing. There were some people that I didn’t know identified as queer, such as Virginia Woolf. Most of the people in this book I had never heard of, so I learned a lot about queer activists.

Many of the people featured in this book are from countries where being gay is illegal. These people had to defy their governments, and sometimes even family, to fight for the right to express their own identity. They had to be incredibly strong to stay true to their beliefs, despite what their family and country said.

I loved the art in this book. All of the images are done in vibrant colours which give a positive feeling to these stories, which did not always have a happy endings.

I really enjoyed this book!

Thanks Wide Eyed Editions for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

A Quick and Easy Guide to Queer and Trans Identities by Mady G., J.R. Zuckerberg

Grease Bats by Archie Bongiovanni

Have you read Queer Heroes? What did you think of it?

Review: The Fever King (Feverwake #1)

Title: The Fever King (Feverwake #1)
Author: Victoria Lee
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, LGBTQ
Publisher: Skyscape
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: March 1, 2019
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

In the former United States, sixteen-year-old Noam Álvaro wakes up in a hospital bed, the sole survivor of the viral magic that killed his family and made him a technopath. His ability to control technology attracts the attention of the minister of defense and thrusts him into the magical elite of the nation of Carolinia.

The son of undocumented immigrants, Noam has spent his life fighting for the rights of refugees fleeing magical outbreaks—refugees Carolinia routinely deports with vicious efficiency. Sensing a way to make change, Noam accepts the minister’s offer to teach him the science behind his magic, secretly planning to use it against the government. But then he meets the minister’s son—cruel, dangerous, and achingly beautiful—and the way forward becomes less clear.

Caught between his purpose and his heart, Noam must decide who he can trust and how far he’s willing to go in pursuit of the greater good.

Review:

I had a hard time getting into this story at the beginning because it was very political. It takes place in the future, where the United States is divided up into separate countries. There were protests from the refugees who were being deported from the countries. There was also a virus going around that either killed people, or, for a few, gave them a magic power.

Once the story went from the broad political story to a plot about the main characters, I really enjoyed it. I couldn’t tell who was lying and what side people were on. It was especially tricky because some characters were telepathic, so they knew when others were lying to them.

This was an exciting story. I really enjoyed it!

Thank you Skyscape for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

This Mortal Coil (This Mortal Coil #1) by Emily Suvada

The Last Magician (The Last Magician #1) by Lisa Maxwell

Have you read The Fever King? What did you think of it?

Review: Grease Bats

Title: Grease Bats
Author: Archie Bongiovanni
Genre: Graphic Novel, LGBTQ
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: September 3, 2019
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

So, no one told you life was gonna be this gay! Grease Bats stars Andy, a trans genderqueer individual who is both tough and loving, and their BFF Scout, an all-feelings-all-the-time mistake-maker. 

Andy and Scout are best buds, roommates, and gay disasters. Along with their friends and plenty of beer, they’re just trying to make it through their 20s, survive late capitalism, and navigate the dating world. Tough and loving Andy is a genderqueer trans individual, who dates like there’s no tomorrow, while Scout, an all-feelings-all-the-time mistake-maker, is still languishing over her ex-girlfriend…from like two years ago.

Created by Archie Bongiovanni (The Quick and Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns) and originally published on Autostraddle, this edition collects all the best misadventures, internet dates, and bad decisions in one place!

Review:

This book is a collection of comics about two best friends, Andy and Scout. They are both genderqueer. Throughout the comics, they go through a few years of adventures. These include, holidays such as Halloween, lots of partying, and even camping.

These characters were so funny. Andy was overdramatic a lot of the time, but also funny. They wore message tanks all the time, and were always drinking and looking for a party. Scout was more serious, which balanced out Andy’s personality.

They also had some other friends who made appearances throughout the comics. Each of the friends were so different, though they identified as genderqueer. It shows that just because they have similar gender identities, they had different ways of expressing their feelings. They all had different ideas of how they should behave, so they had to figure out what they wanted in life.

I really enjoyed these comics!

Thank you BOOM! Studios for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

A Quick and Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns by Archie Bongiovanni, Tristan Jimerson

Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me by Mariko Tamaki, Rosemary Valero-O’Connell

Have you read Grease Bats? What did you think of it?

Review: Ho’onani: Hula Warrior

Title: Ho’onani: Hula Warrior
Author: Heather Gale, Mika Song
Genre: Children’s, LGBT
Publisher: Tundra Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: October 1, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

An empowering celebration of identity, acceptance and Hawaiian culture based on the true story of a young girl in Hawaiʻi who dreams of leading the boys-only hula troupe at her school.

Ho’onani feels in-between. She doesn’t see herself as wahine(girl) OR kane (boy). She’s happy to be in the middle. But not everyone sees it that way.

When Ho’onani finds out that there will be a school performance of a traditional kane hula chant, she wants to be part of it. But can a girl really lead the all-male troupe? Ho’onani has to try . . .

Based on a true story, Ho’onani: Hula Warrior is a celebration of Hawaiian culture and an empowering story of a girl who learns to lead and learns to accept who she really is–and in doing so, gains the respect of all those around her.

Ho’onani’s story first appeared in the documentary A Place in the Middle by filmmakers Dean Hamer and Joe Wilson.

Review:

This story is about a little girl, named Ho’onani, in Hawaii who identifies as being in between a boy and a girl. She refers to herself as a girl, but she wants to join the boys hula troupe at her school. After some convincing, she is allowed to join the boys and even lead them in a performance.

Ho’onani was a strong girl in the story. She wanted to be a hula warrior, so she kept trying to reach her dream. She received some backlash at home, when her sister didn’t approve of what Ho’onani was doing. Even through these harsh comments, she still kept her unique identity.

I really enjoyed this picture book about identity.

Thank you Penguin Random House Canada for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

The Proudest Blue by Ibtihaj Muhammad, S.K. Ali, Hatem Aly

Have you read Ho’onani: Hula Warrior? What did you think of it?

Review: Mooncakes

Title: Mooncakes
Author: Wendy Xu, Suzanne Walker
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Graphic Novel, LGBT
Publisher: Lion Forge
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: October 15, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

A story of love and demons, family and witchcraft.

Nova Huang knows more about magic than your average teen witch. She works at her grandmothers’ bookshop, where she helps them loan out spell books and investigate any supernatural occurrences in their New England town.

One fateful night, she follows reports of a white wolf into the woods, and she comes across the unexpected: her childhood crush, Tam Lang, battling a horse demon in the woods. As a werewolf, Tam has been wandering from place to place for years, unable to call any town home.

Pursued by dark forces eager to claim the magic of wolves and out of options, Tam turns to Nova for help. Their latent feelings are rekindled against the backdrop of witchcraft, untested magic, occult rituals, and family ties both new and old in this enchanting tale of self-discovery.

Review:

This is a beautiful graphic novel.

There was great representation in this story. Nova wears hearing aids, which isn’t a common thing for characters in novels. She’s proud of wearing ones that are brightly colored so they stand out. Her friend Tam is gender neutral and uses the pronoun “they.” It takes a while to get used to reading that pronoun to refer to one person, but it was a great inclusive addition to the book.

I loved the magical elements of the story. Nova reminded me of Sabrina the Teenage Witch because she lived with her two grandmas, and Sabrina lived with her two aunts. There were also demons, werewolves, and an evil witch. This was an exciting magical story.

I really enjoyed this story!

Thank you Lion Forge for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill

Have you read Mooncakes? What did you think of it?

Review: Bury the Lede

Title: Bury the Lede
Author: Gaby Dunn, Claire Roe
Genre: Graphic Novel, Mystery, LGBT
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: October, 8, 2019
Rating: ★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Twenty-one-year-old Madison T. Jackson is already the star of the Emerson College student newspaper when she nabs a coveted night internship at Boston’s premiere newspaper, The Boston Lede. The job’s simple: do whatever the senior reporters tell you to do, from fetching coffee to getting a quote from a grieving parent. It’s grueling work, so when the murder of a prominent Boston businessman comes up on the police scanner, Madison races to the scene of the grisly crime. There, Madison meets the woman who will change her life forever: prominent socialite Dahlia Kennedy, who is covered in gore and being arrested for the murder of her family. The newspapers put everyone they can in front of her with no results until, with nothing to lose, Madison gets a chance – and unexpectedly barrels headfirst into danger she never anticipated.

Review:

This graphic novel follows a reporter investigating a high profile murder in Boston. Dahlia Kennedy is suspected of killing her husband and kidnapping her son. For some reason, Dahlia would only speak to Madison, the intern for a newspaper. Madison springs to fame with her reporting on the murder, but it comes at a cost to her personal life.

This was an exciting story. There was a lot of depth to the story. There were many different aspects of Madison’s life that were shown, including her work and her family life. It often conflicted because her brother was a politician. The murder story was complicated, which kept me guessing until the end.

I really enjoyed this graphic novel.

Thank you BOOM! Studios for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

I Hate Everyone But You by Gaby Dunn, Allison Raskin

Have you read Bury the Lede? What did you think of it?

Review: Bloodlust and Bonnets

Title: Bloodlust and Bonnets
Author: Emily McGovern
Genre: Graphic Novel, Historical, Fantasy, LGBTQ
Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: September 17, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

From the creator of the hit webcomic My Life As a Background Slytherin comes a hilarious graphic novel pastiche of classic Romantic literature led by a trio of queer misfits—and several angry vampires.
 

Set in early nineteenth-century Britain, Bloodlust & Bonnets follows Lucy, an unworldly debutante who desires a life of passion and intrigue—qualities which earn her the attention of Lady Violet Travesty, the leader of a local vampire cult. 
 
But before Lucy can embark on her new life of vampiric debauchery, she finds herself unexpectedly thrown together with the flamboyant poet Lord Byron (“from books!”) and a mysterious bounty-hunter named Sham. The unlikely trio lie, flirt, fight, and manipulate each other as they make their way across Britain, disrupting society balls, slaying vampires, and making every effort not to betray their feelings to each other as their personal and romantic lives become increasingly entangled.
 
Both witty and slapstick, elegant and gory, Emily McGovern’s debut graphic novel pays tribute to and pokes fun at beloved romance tropes, delivering a joyous, action-packed world of friendship and adventure.

Review:

I loved this new graphic novel!

This story was set in the nineteenth century, with Lord Byron as one of the main characters. Along with two friends, Lucy and Sham, Lord Byron searches for a vampire Lady Violet Travesty. Each character has their own secret reason for joining in the vampire hunt. There were loads of other fantastical elements as well, including a succubus and a talking castle.

I laughed the entire time I was reading this story. Each of the characters were exaggerated in a hilarious way. Lord Byron was in love with himself and didn’t pay attention to the people around him. Sham was serious and spoke the truth with no filter to protect the feelings of others (when Lucy thinks that Sham likes her the same way that she likes Sham, Sham replies with yes I do like girls, just not you). Lucy was kind of clueless to people around her, and she was blinded by her desire to join the vampire cult. These characters were hilarious together!

This was such a funny graphic novel! I highly recommend it!

Thank you Andrews McMeel Publishing for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: The Graphic Novel by Seth Grahame-Smith, Jane Austen, Tony Lee, Cliff Richards

Have you read Bloodlust and Bonnets? What did you think of it?