Is it just me, or are we starting to see a romance/mystery blend trend? Either that, or I’m noticing them more, because I am 100% here for this genre mashup. But as always, we have a wide range of queer romance choices this month, from vampires and rock stars to con artists, elves, and even an undertaker.
I hope you find something new and interesting for your TBR here, and please don’t hesitate to let me know if you do!
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Why I’m excited to list it: I read this sapphic short and quite enjoyed it. One of those stories where I kept thinking “Y’all are both ridiculous!” but in a fun way. Happy ending, good stuff.
“@HexyHelga is a hedge witch who will cast a spell on your friends and hex your worst enemies. Off Twitter, she’s Aden, a college student coping with a breakup with the perfect girl.
When said perfect girl contacts @HexyHelga, it’s to hex her ex-girlfriend. Aden doesn’t understand why the other girl would still care about her enough to hex her, but business is business, right? Even if, ethically, she’s got to hex herself to fill her ex’s orders.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Polyam, respect for sex workers, BIPOC MCs and author.
“Sex worker couple Kian Kalu and Jordanne Daye decide to fantasise about their hot, untouchable flatmate and best friend, Luka Prince, just once. Just to scratch the itch. They totally don’t want anything else from Luka — not his body, nor his heart.
The last thing Luka expects to come home to is his two sexy flatmates and best friends getting frisky underneath their blanket on the living room sofa. And for the first time in a long time, Luka lets himself want.
It was supposed to be one video for Jordanne’s and Kian’s subscribers. One video. No strings attached.
Except now, Jordanne and Kian don’t know how to let Luka go, not after they know how fucking perfect he feels between them. And Luka feels like maybe he can risk getting his heart broken again, if it means he gets to have Jordanne and Kian forever.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Trans sapphic vampires, yay! Waldrom is a trans woman.
“‘What are best friends for, after all?’
‘Getting us turned into vampires.’
Best Friends are forever, are they not? Time spent together, bonds formed, promises made. No matter how fantastical they might seem, how far-fetched. But friendships can change as time takes its toll, and people change.
Miyako might be a bit lost in life. She’s come out as trans, is studying in the hopes of doing something with her life, and perhaps wishing that things could be different. But Luna is still her best friend, and when she gets invited to go to a concert with her, to see Luna’s favourite band and crush, what she doesn’t expect is the offer to be turned into a vampire alongside Luna, because she wants her there with her. Of course, there is no way that she was ever going to refuse.
Decisions, made on impulse or not, have their consequences. Especially when it means that she’s thrown herself into a hidden aspect of society. Sure, she might have the body she’d only been able to dream about, but now she’s involved with a wider group of people, has to prove herself to her family, and there is darkness at the edges. And why does she have to have feelings for that one hot vampire who was an absolute bitch to her. Even if she is exactly her type, and perhaps there might be more to it all.
A trans, sapphic, new adult vampire romance about the strength of friendship and family, of throwing yourself into something blindly, and of love and all that it comes with.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Older sapphics. I’ve started reading this and I really like the narrative voice.
“When successful tech entrepreneur Beth Harper returns to her sleepy coastal hometown to settle her late mother’s estate, she expects to quickly wrap up the affairs and head back to her life. But coming home stirs up memories and regrets she thought long buried.
While attending a local festival, Beth spots Sarah Mitchell, her first love and best friend since childhood, who she left behind without explanation decades ago. Their emotional reunion begins to thaw Beth’s frozen heart and awaken dreams of embracing a simpler life.
As Beth and Sarah rekindle their friendship and begin navigating their reawakened feelings, obstacles arise. Beth grapples with giving up her ambitious career and elite social status for an unconventional relationship in a conservative small town. Meanwhile, Sarah still harbors the hurt of being abandoned by Beth so many years before.
Overflowing with nostalgia, rich emotion, and characters who steal your heart, The Life I Left Behind is an unforgettable ‘Later in life’ romance that reminds us it’s never too late to chart a new course back home.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Sci-fi romance is my favorite flavor. Third gender author.
“Eke lives in a nice house, in a wealthy neighborhood, with an upstanding family: Mr. and Mrs. Kensworth and their three children. But Eke is not family; Eke is property. He’s an AI whose job is to keep the house clean and organized, and no matter how much Eke secretly wishes to be allowed outside to see the stars or to make a real friend, he’s either ignored or bullied by the family that owns him.
To make things worse, the Kensworths purchase a shiny new AI named Kyp, who quickly becomes everyone’s favorite, leaving Eke feeling more isolated than ever. That is until a terrifying party incident brings the two AI together, sparking a chain of events that forces them to commit the unthinkable: defy human orders and run away.
With AI hunters hot on their trail, Eke and Kyp set out on a perilous journey across the country, fighting for their lives, searching for the true meaning of freedom, and even daring to fall in love.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Two AI queer romances in one newsletter? I am a lucky gal. Ganderqueer author.
“Evan isn’t brave. But when he hears a group of Human Firsters attacking a humanoid garbage collection bot, he has to step in. He rescues an undiscovered SPARK, a self-aware android who’s never experienced life outside of his collection route and the miserable, gray trash depot.
Evan wants to help. But he might have underestimated just how cute Quincy can be. Or just how difficult it would be living with a sexy android who’s exactly his type. But if Evan couldn’t get his crappy exes to stick around, how could he ever capture Quincy’s interest?
Quincy loves flowers growing in sidewalk cracks. And making food in Evan’s kitchen, even though he can’t eat it. Oh, and jokes. Quincy loves jokes. He’s kind of even getting good at them.
Most of all, he loves Evan.
As Quincy settles into his new life, he can’t escape from prejudice against SPARKs. Evan is everything he wants, if only he can stay off the Human Firsters’ radar long enough to win his love.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Queer M/F with a demisexual hero, and there appears to be a dating app for ace and aro people in this book.
“Falling for the wrong person? Bury your feelings.
Callum Flannelly would rather dive into an open grave than take a stranger to dinner and a movie. But he can only inherit the family undertaking business and carry on their legacy under one condition: He must marry before his 35th birthday. So it’s out of the mortuary and into the dating scene.
Lark Thompson would rather get crushed by a falling anvil than live next to a funeral home during her stay in Galway, Ireland. The vivacious American cartoon creator and animator came here to embrace life, not be reminded of losing her husband.
When Lark learns of Callum’s dilemma and aversion to marrying out of necessity rather than love, she agrees to help the introverted mortician. Although sworn off love herself, she is optimistic that Callum can find The One and secure his inheritance.
But as the dating project progresses and their friendship grows, so does a mutual attraction. The more time she spends with serious, sarcastic Callum, the more she dreads finding him a match. And the more disastrous dates he endures, the more trepidation he feels for Lark’s imminent return to the states.
If they think it’s possible to ignore their connection, they’re dead wrong.”
Why I’m excited to list it: The first novella in this sapphic fantasy romance series was wonderful! If you didn’t read How To Get A Girlfriend When You’re A Terrifying Monster yet, you may want to back up to see how Sian and Trillian meet.
“Dimension-hopping lovers Sian and Trillin find themselves trapped in a world where people are split regardless of gender or life goals into Princesses (for being rescued), Prince Charmings (for doing the rescuing), and Evil Queens (for being rescued from). When the world’s fairytale magic latches onto Trillin as a likely Evil Queen, Sian has to fight for her own fairytale ending.”
Why I’m excited to list it: I’m always excited when a new Arden Powell book comes out, and this blurb is a delight. Author’s pronouns are they/them.
“Sebastian is a con artist with expensive taste. Unfortunately, he has no hope of living the high-class life he craves without stealing it. So, that’s exactly what he’s going to do. He might be a pathetic ex-convict by day, but by night, he’s London’s most notorious jewel thief. All he needs is someone to provide him with food, money, and a place to stay while he plans the heist that will secure his future once and for all.
When a friend dares him to seduce Morgan Hollyhock — rich, handsome, and incredibly boring — Sebastian thinks he’s found the perfect mark. There’s just one problem. He and Morgan have history, and he’s unprepared for the flood of emotions when he sees Morgan again for the first time in twenty years.
For once, Sebastian wants to be honest about who he is and what he’s done. But Morgan has always been a stickler for the rules. If Sebastian opens up about his crimes or his past, Morgan might turn him in, or worse, reject him. And that won’t just jeopardize Sebastian’s criminal career. After a lifetime of cheating and lying, Sebastian is appalled to realize that he does in fact have a heart to break.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Polyam. Author has noted there is no cheating.
“Boy meets girl and then her boyfriend.
A year ago, Leo Day was the king of the world. He had won a national singing competition and had fallen in love with the charismatic Blue, a rival. Their love story was epic, as long as they lived in their private bubble. Now, not only was Leo’s career stagnating, things were not going well with Blue either.
Things take an unexpected turn when, he meets the charming Chloe and her boyfriend, the world-famous actor, at a charity gala. Leo realizes, he’s going to have to make some hard decisions, if he wants to be more than Blue’s cute boyfriend.
If he wants to be more than just a footnote in someone else’s happiness.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Paranormal + mystery + sapphic slow burn romance.
“Ghosts are real, and they’re watching over their families. Sometimes, that’s a good thing. But not for the Evanses.
Tennessee Evans comes from a long, undistinguished line of crooks, grifters, layabouts, and rascals. She’s made her share of mistakes, sure, but she’s trying to break the mold. Even after a contentious breakup that hits her emotionally and financially, she works hard, keeps her head up, and carries on.
Then her ex winds up murdered in her backyard. And her prints are all over the murder weapon. She didn’t do it, but no one believes her.
Especially not the pigheaded, infuriatingly hot lead detective investigating the case. On the contrary, she seems to have it out for Tennessee.
Tennessee knows she needs help, and she needs it fast. What she doesn’t know is that the ancestral spirit council is on the job. Which is probably for the best, since their last few missions have ended in disaster – and the odd, accidental death. (Sorry about that, Jane!)
The council dispatches a 20th century American tax expert and an 18th century British criminal to tackle the case. Whether the pair can put aside centuries of personal and cultural differences to save Tennessee is anyone’s guess. But one thing’s for sure – Marshmeadow will never be the same after this ill-advised haunting!
A supernatural cozy mystery with outrageous shenanigans, cute dogs, found family, a slow burn lesbian romance, and an old, definitely haunted house full of secrets.”
Why I’m excited to list it: I don’t know anything about this debut author, but this blurb sounds like it’s right up the alley of at least a few people I know get this newsletter – and the Kindle sample is action-packed.
“Andrea Gall has been living a quiet life in a quiet city in a comfortable retirement from her old career In her late thirties — a con artist with a penchant for targeting the rich and slimy. When her old identity makes an unexpected comeback with the accusation of a murder, her world is upended and she finds herself on the run as the police show up at her door. Alone and outnumbered she’s returned to the world of crime in a race to clear her name before the rest of her life ends up behind bars, but will work turn to play as the thrill of the chase comes back?
Hot on her tail is Garreth Scates, an alluring bounty hunter with mysteries of his own. Devoted to his sense of justice, he must face the conflict between his duty to bring her in and his desire to uncover the truth. What will happen when this experienced woman of wiles and powerful trans man collide?
Find out in Beating the Bounty, the debut adults only queer romance from T.E. Zooey of criminal chills, sexual thrills, and deadly secrets featuring enemies to lovers, dangerous situations, power differences, and an open ending for more adventures to come.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Nonbinary author, he/him pronouns. I started reading this, even though it’s not my usual catnip, and I really liked what I’ve read so far.
“Out of the game, but not the closet.
Hockey was all I ever wanted, but a collision put my career as a star centre on ice. I’m back in my hometown, the one place I felt free: Sunrise Island.
Fox Harris is back, too. My best friend’s little brother isn’t much wiser, but he’s all grown up. He’s my perfect opposite… a little too perfect.
Can I resist the one thing I shouldn’t touch? I can’t stop breaking my own rules.
Carter was so out of my league that he doesn’t even play for my team… but that never stopped me pining. I can’t believe I’m falling into the arms of the one man I never dreamed would want me.
His only rule is that we stay quiet. And I’ve got a rule, too. I’ll take his warm lips and strong arms—but that’s it. I’m playing goalie for my broken heart, but he’s got his eye on the puck.
When Carter takes his shot, can we trust in love… or will everyone lose this riskiest game of all?”
Why I’m excited to list it: Queer guys written by transmasc author.
“‘A knight’s oath isn’t something that should be given lightly.’
Deklyn Delonir, Captain of the Order of the Redemptor and Knight of the Hawkeron Kingdom, has spent his entire life serving his goddess and realm to earn redemption for his past sins. Everything he does is in service to his King and the people under his protection and leadership. For his entire life, Deklyn pushed away the deepest desires of his heart, burying them and praying that they never come to the surface.
When his King calls on him for the most important job of his career, one that would put an end to a war against an unknown enemy simply called The Corrupted, Deklyn doesn’t think twice before readily accepting it. Once the job is completed, the war will end and the people Deklyn swore an oath to serve will be safe and the bloodshed will end.
Crown Prince Kai of Hawkeron has never known what freedom feels like. Everything has been lain before him before he was born. Swayed by the whims of a fate outside of his control and duty that is inescapable, Kai doesn’t know who he is. Kai is a political entity, used for his father’s gain.
When his father calls on him to fulfill his duty as the Crown Prince, Kai knows he is defeated. He will be sent to a neighboring kingdom to marry its princess to create an alliance that will provide his father’s military with the resources needed to put an end to the war they waged against The Corrupted. Knowing that his failure to complete his duty would lead to the deaths of many people and the annihilation of the Hawkeron Empire, Kai resigns himself to his fate.
As Deklyn and Kai travel together, they quickly learn that through the struggles they face and the desires that come to the surface, they are more than their duty. As secrets about The Corrupted come to light, they must come to terms with their fate while grappling with the very real fact that they are falling for each other. With the fate of their homeland in the balance, Deklyn and Kai must choose between duty and desire.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Sapphic fantasy with a marriage of magical convenience, intriguing!
“Valis Nyxera Aefbain, queen of the snow elves, must find a consort of magic blood as soon as possible. A dangerous secret slumbers beneath her palace and only a powerful ritual can keep her kingdom safe.
Brynn Woodwarden, a wood elf with misfiring magical abilities, hates the snow elves. They killed her brother, Darrow, while poaching unicorns. But dangerous creatures prowl her forest home – twisted, rotted things that infect anyone they bite. The wood elves can’t fend them off alone.
Only Brynn’s unique blood is suitable for Valis’ ritual. Only Valis has the soldiers and alchemists Brynn needs to stop the rotted creatures. An arranged marriage is the perfect solution… but such a union might be more than either of them bargained for.”
Why I’m excited to list it: I have never seen a romance blurb that mentions heritage vegetables before. And no, that isn’t a euphemism.
“A tired rock star and a judgemental gardener… what could possibly go wrong?
The Purple Lizards are a rock world phenomenon, but lead singer Martin’s tired of his rock-and-roll persona. He’d rather be at home with his garden. When he gets home from tour he finds his gardener has had a heart attack and Simon, his grandson, is helping him out. Simon’s different to Fred. He talks, for a start. Martin and Fred have a perfectly functional friendship based on long silences and discussions about heritage vegetables. Simon talks about personal things as well. It makes Martin prickly.
Simon’s at a bit of a loss. He stepped up to help his grandfather whilst he was in hospital despite his misgivings about the absent Martin. But Fred clearly likes him, which is unusual. Fred prefers plants to people. That he actively likes a rock star who used to smash up hotel rooms is really strange. Simon’s reserving judgement. Apparently the band have a break in their tour coming up. He’ll see whether he can work for the man once he’s spent some time with him.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Sappic mystery/romance + burning down the patriarchy, yay!
“‘When I want to burn down the patriarchy, I don’t try to fix it. I light a match and take the whole town down with me.’
Trouble blazes when Erin’s Louisiana hometown return lands her between yet another arson accusation and a murder. Investigating officer Samantha tackles the case with calm and control, a stark contrast to Erin’s trademark chaos. She struggles to keep Erin clear of both cases while battling the local patriarchy for the soul of her town.
Their attraction is undeniable, but Erin has no love for cops and isn’t spending a second more than necessary in a place that never wanted her. Plus, Samantha isn’t exactly public about her bisexuality yet.
The women must navigate lingering wounds, a murder investigation, and a hurricane on the horizon to find a love that can weather all storms.”
Why I’m excited to list it: I have a soft spot for new adult sapphic books, and I really like what I’ve read so far. Mexican-born writer.
“Twenty-one-year-old Andy Priest loves writing, except when she doesn’t. Still, she dreams of a far greater life, of big success — and perhaps, why not, of seeing her name on the cover of a best-selling book. She loves to daydream about far-fetched love tales too, which is the one thing Emilia Peterson inspires the moment Andy lays eyes on her on the night of her best friend’s birthday. A driven and compassionate med student, Emilia is everything Andy had ever dreamed of, and then some.
Playing with the cards of fate and circumstance, the universe brings the two of them together, never with the guarantee that it should stay easy.
A handful of sun is a story of life and death; of the hardships love faces when love isn’t enough, and the things it can overcome, when it is.”
A re-release from me, making the queer M/F prequel for my Love at Knockdown series available on KU with the other books in the series! It’s a “how they met” short story, grumpy / sunshine & tall gal / short guy. Will has been called “a golden retriever of a man” and that beta reader was not wrong.
“Can true love happen after thirty-five? Absolutely, but you might need to fall on your ass to find it.
When Will Strauss went out to hear a band, he didn’t expect to get knocked down during a political argument. He also couldn’t have known that the (possible) greatest love of his life would arrive on the scene in the form of a gorgeous, charmingly grumpy brunette almost a head taller than his 5’4”. If only he’d gotten her number…
A second accidental meeting and one very good date, though, just might be the beginning of something beautiful.
Knock Me Down is a high-heat romance short story featuring a pansexual guy falling head over heels, a straight gal who needs to choose a new career because she’s realized being an ethical cop is untenable, and more than one incident requiring first aid.”
Why I’m excited to list it: I’ve started reading this sapphic fantasy and I really like both the MC Tiller and the worldbuilding so far.
“After years of city life, Tiller is finally ready to revisit the magical forest where she grew up. But the forest has turned deadly, and Tiller has no magic of her own. To survive, she’ll need a bodyguard.
Tiller finds only one mage willing to escort her. A woman named Carnelian: a soldier with a pretty face and a dodgy reputation. Carnelian loves parties, drinking, flirting, big spending, and taking risks that others would find downright unthinkable. She’ll happily lead Tiller to the heart of the Devouring Forest.
But she won’t do it for free.
The two of them live in a country where magic-users like Carnelian labor under lifelong legal restrictions. The fastest ticket to greater liberty: getting married. Which is why Carnelian—known far and wide as the mage who no one would wed—demands Tiller’s hand in marriage as her payment.
Cautious, reserved Tiller never lets strangers invade her personal space. She’s horrified by the prospect of marrying a mischievous gambler. But she still needs Carnelian’s magic to overcome the wild monsters blocking the path back to her childhood home. And the deeper they go in the forest, the greater the danger. Tiller will have to learn very quickly how to deal with the darker side of her would-be wife.
The Forest at the Heart of Her Mage is a slow-burn f/f romance with two polar-opposite heroines — both hiding enormous secrets — reluctantly engaged to be married for the sake of convenience.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Steampunk sapphic series starter, yay!
A dark tale of self-discovery that will sweep you into a world of swords, secrets, snark, and sapphic love.
Kiera never fit in. Not on her aunt’s farm, not at her boring job, not with her ex-girlfriends. But she hasn’t given up hope of finding that elusive place to belong.
A freak storm leaves her stranded, alone in the office.
When something flashes past the upstairs window, the sarcastic voice in her head, Jiminy, insists it’s a figment of her imagination. But Kiera knows she didn’t imagine the flying pirate ship.
Or the dragon.
If she jumps on board — into a hidden world above the clouds — there’ll be no coming back. Is she ready for the quest of a lifetime, and the dark secrets beginning to unfurl?
Void is the first book in a dark steampunk fantasy series that skillfully blends thrilling adventure, snarky humour, and a sapphic slow-burn romance.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Queer M/F where she’s pan, he’s bi.
“Izadora Grant landed her dream with a traveling aerial show. The only problem? She’s partnered with nemesis, Chance O’Brien. In high school he stole her college scholarship and her date to prom. Now he’s stealing her moment of joy. If she wants to keep her dream—and sanity—she’s needs to fake a friendship with the one person who drives her up the wall.
Chance can’t believe Iz is standing in front of him glaring. Okay, he can believe the glaring part. He can’t help pushing her buttons. Something about facing off against the feisty woman sets a fire within.
Only now they need to stop one-upping each other and start getting along. Both have dreams and promises riding on this show. But the more they fake a friendship, the realer things get. Soon, the two discover their lifelong competition has been hiding an undercurrent of attraction neither can ignore.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Magic x time travel = you’ve got my attention. Nonbinary genderfluid author.
“Darius Adair just wants to live in peace. He wakes up, goes to work, does his job, and comes home to a quiet studio apartment in Chicago. As a mage working to protect the magical and the mundane alike, it’s as normal a life as he can have. After everything he’s been through, he deserves that much.
A call in the dead of night shatters that illusion.
Morgan Slavin can’t recall much. His memories are fractured, and his body feels like a thousand bits of broken glass. He only knows one thing: Time travel sucks. After completing a ritual that forced him through the timeline, his mind, body, and magic are twisted and broken. Beyond the pain and mental anguish, there’s little he can reach for. He is desperate to find an anchor in this storm. After all, he came back in time to stop…what? Why had he returned?
Sent by a late night call to find the broken Morgan, Darius now must help him find out what he’s come back to stop, and soon. If that wasn’t challenging enough, the longer they’re together, the more Darius feels himself drawn to Morgan, and the more willing he is to open old wounds that nearly destroyed him in the past.”
Why I’m excited to list it: The premise is creative and I love the cover. FYI, I did condense the blurb here.
“Sophie Sweet is a game programmer who adores three things: writing code; Doritos Surprise, the one thing she can cook; and her ride-or-die BFF Jodie Edwards. To Sophie, people are a lousy bunch of jackasses who lie and leave when you need them most, so why bother? That goes double for “love,” a ridiculous fairy tale sold to women to keep them subjugated. Sophie and Jodie have a tradition of getting their fortunes read at the carnival, but this year there’s a new surprise in town. Tiffani the Psychic tells Sophie she’ll prove that everlasting passion exists for everyone! Sophie tells Tiffani to screw off.
Big mistake. Huge.
The next day, Sophie wakes up to bad haircuts and braces, for she has landed in a bona-fide romantic comedy. Jodie is co-starring in the high school hijinks, but doesn’t seem to understand that reality has upended itself. The following day, Sophie opens her eyes to a new rom-com: royalty, castles, snarky queen. Starring her as the clumsy princess, of course. In fact, each sunrise, Tiffani conjures a new Bridget Jones-y variant for the unenthused ‘heroine.’ Sophie’s only constant is Jodie, being her magnificent, ride-or-die self through all the iterations of hell.
How many torturous scenarios must Sophie endure until she realizes that pure, true love does exist?”
Hearts of Stone by Lauren Esker (Amazon)
Why I’m excited to list it: DRAGON. Bi polyam with a second chance romance. I started reading this and I quite like the female MC so far.
“Tess is an oreiad – a rock nymph. She was never supposed to fall in love with a dragonslayer. And especially not a dragonslayer who has a dragon ex-boyfriend.
But when Tess’s beloved Michael is poisoned in battle, Tess must seek help from Verdi, Michael’s ex. She doesn’t expect the dragon shifter to be so beautiful, so magnetic. And, it turns out, Verdi is willing to take two mates, if it’s needed to save the life of the man they both love.
Hearts of Stone is an MMF bisexual menage with a human dragonslayer, a dragon, and the rock nymph who loves them both. No choosing and a guaranteed HEA.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Queer guy writing queer guys, and look at that pretty cover.
“Assassin. Spy. Witch.
I serve the Witch Queen of the United Kingdom, fulfilling her will within the shadows. Exterminating enemies quietly, gathering intelligence while blending in with the scenery. And I serve Her Majesty well.
There are rules to my service, clear lines that must never be crossed:
Never break my cover.
Don’t get tangled up in messy love affairs.
Keep my life clean.
Stay away from demons in these strange new days.
But one night, while working another mission, a demon crosses my path. Instantly, he takes my breath away. Beautiful, strange, dripping with seductive energy. He needs help, shelter, desperate to escape a group of mysterious hunters. Against my better judgement, I take him home.
I’m a fool. I could lose my head for breaking the rules like this. I’m playing with fire. And he could kill me at any moment. He’s stronger, deadlier, built for violence as well as seduction. But the longer he stays with me, the more he intrigues me. I want to know everything about him.
Him. The demon who makes my heart race.
Him. The one fracturing my sense of duty.
Him. The creature igniting my every desire.
What have I gotten myself into?”
Why I’m excited to list it: Autistic, agender, ace MC!
“Follow a fellowship of sapphic knights as they’re seduced by witches, queens, goddesses — and each other — in a dark, lush fantasy inspired by Arthurian legend.
Under the reign of King Theomacha the Exalted, the Land of Maidens flourishes. Her knights protect and explore the realm, seeking artifacts lost to time and fending off wicked, cunning magics.
Seure, scholar and knight, traverses the world on quests of discovery. When an invisible, eldritch library begins capturing local villagers and subjecting them to strange interrogations, Seure tracks the enchantment to its source – a woman named Ganeida, who has been bound to the library for centuries.
They make a bet with Ganeida to break the enchantment that holds her in place, but it could come at the cost of Seure’s own freedom – or losing their heart in the bargain.”
Why I’m excited to list it: Let sapphic books be creepy! Small press.
“Award-winning author Anna Burke delivers the shivers in this daring queer dark fantasy romance that is teeming with sensuous vampires, dark academia, plant horrors, and terrifying fungal fae.
When Clara Eden is offered a job as an archivist working for eccentric estate owner Agatha Montague, she thinks her prayers have been answered. Soon, she finds herself sucked into the world of her research, captivated by a romantic correspondence thousands of years old. But as her feelings for her employer’s assistant, Fiadh, deepen, so too does her suspicion that something about Agatha Montague isn’t quite right. Unfortunately for Clara, by the time her suspicions are confirmed, it is far too late to run.”
At the end of each newsletter, I take the liberty of recommending a few of my recent favorite queer reads, from romance to SFF to graphic novels and comics. Maybe you’ll find a new favorite book here! These may not always be self-published or small press; it just depends on what’s gotten to the top of my TBR lately.
“Being an intern at One Wizard sounds magical on the page, but in practice mostly means getting yelled at by senior mages and angry clients alike. And so, after receiving a frantic call from a young man who’s awoken to a talisman on his bedroom wall—and no memory of how it got there — Journeyman Wen jumps at the chance to escape call-center duty and actually help someone for once.”
Read this modern-world fantasy novella about a trainee wizard working in a call center ASAP if you:
– have ever worked a soul-crushing, dead-end office job
– see a surly/vulnerable teenager and want to wrap them in a blanket and feed them cookies
– dig a found family story
– love a sparkly best friend character
I also want to ask the universe for more second person POV in fiction! It’s not the right fit for every story, but when it’s right – like it is here! – it’s perfection.
“Ivan E. Coyote is a master storyteller; her beautiful, funny stories about growing up a lesbian butch in the Canadian north attract audiences both gay and straight. In her fifth collection, Ivan addresses issues of family, queer youth, and homophobia with a trenchant and wistful eye.”
I meant to read this a couple of stories at a time, but it didn’t happen. Just kept reading. I walked away from this collection feeling better about the world, which for me lately has been pretty hard to come by. I have my next Ivan Coyote book on my TBR already.
NOTE: This book is pretty expensive, which is fine!, but if you’re on a tight budget: (a) check/ask your library (b) a 1-month Kobo Plus subscription is less than this book and you could read other stuff too.
Charming, adorable, diverse, and queer sci-fi comic set in a future when people have almost completely given up directly touching each other. Sex is a recreational activity that happens in virtual reality, and any adult who expresses interest in even platonic touch is regarded with extreme suspicion. Our two main characters are Abeille and Miel. They meet by literally running into each other, and Abeille can’t stop thinking about how that human contact felt. What follows is her and Miel’s journey towards reclaiming touch, and the impacts their relationship has on various people around them.
I’m enjoying this series, having read up through the third collected volume. (Which we get via Biggs’s very well-organized periodic Kickstarters.)
An RPG-inspired fantasy romp graphic novel about a pansexual playboy prince joining a band of adventurers on a mission to solve a mystery of disappearing townsfolk in a small village. The mystery part feels a wee bit underbaked, but the characters are all fantastic and more than make up for it. I had a great time reading it and I really wish it had been a series starter!
“Adventure awaits! But our heroes are missing some manpower.
People are going missing in a small mountain town. The city guard are blocked from a real investigation. The notorious Underguild has assigned Michel a secret mission: find the missing villagers and bring whatever kidnapped them to justice. Unfortunately for Michel (and his fellow adventurers, Ani and Hocus), they’re short a fighter and need one more party member to foil this plot. Even more unfortunately, the only volunteer seems to be the arrogant, ostentatious, purple playboy Prince Eugene looking to cure his boredom. Covert is not a concept that he’s familiar with, and let’s just say his commitment to the mission is questionable.
Every day is basically spring break for Eugene, but outside the palace walls he crashes into a hard reality: the system that kept him safe in his silk-sheeted bed isn’t particularly concerned with the well-being of anyone who isn’t him. Eugene will have to level-up his awareness if he means to be a real hero, and time is running short!”