Book Review

Books for Pride Month by various authors

c.2023, various publishers, various page counts

The rainbow flags, the parades and confetti, this time of year makes you want to celebrate Pride Month in any way you can. So why not grab one (or all!) of these great books about LGBTQ history and life?

First of all, if you’re heading out — out of state, out of town, out on the town, grab “The Pride Atlas” by Maartje Hensen (Chronicle Books, $30). This big, gorgeous book offers 500 unique, special, exciting ideas for travel this month and for the rest of the year.

So you love dancing, on sand, a club, or on the street. Fine dining is your thing, and browsing small shops sounds like your idea of a dream. Then this book will open your eyes to places to do all of the above, and more — best of all, many of these fabulous spots are almost right outside your door. If you’re making travel plans at all in 2023, this is the book to take with you.

So what’s up with the next generation of LGBTQ kids? In “ Young Queer America: Real Stories and Faces of LGBTQ+ Youth” by Maxwell Poth, foreword by Isis King (Chronicle Books, $24.95), it’s almost like seeing the future.

Or how about this: you can think of this book as a series of mini-biographies, full of advice and positivity but also pain and struggle and lots of open, honest peeks at what it’s like to be a gay, lesbian or trans kid (pre-teen to young adult) in today’s world. You’ll see their journey (so far) and their hopes which, in a way, makes this book a compass for tomorrow, and don’t we all want that now?

Sometimes, a little steam is all you want for your Pride Month, and “ Dykette” by Jenny Fran Davis (Holt, $26.99) will be what you want. When twenty-somethings Sasha and Jesse are invited on a mini-vacation with a wealthy lesbian couple in a remote, private area, the plan for the getaway is obvious – made even more so by the presence of a third couple of women, known to the younger pair.

It doesn’t go well. Part romance, part steam, this may be the beach read you want this Pride Month.

And finally, you can’t have Pride without paying homage to the gay icons who’ve gone before you, and in “Game Show Confidential” by Boze Hadleigh (Lyons Press, $21.95), you’ll read about game show hosts and history, scandals and salesmanship, gaffes and greats including the irrepressible Paul Lynde, who Hadleigh calls “The King of the Zingers.” There’s a wealth of information inside this book, and plenty of nostalgia, making it great enjoyment for anyone who spent summers in front of a rotating fan and a television, playing along in your grandma’s’ living room.

And, of course, if you still need more books for Pride, your favorite librarian or bookseller is the person to ask. They’ll know what you need to read to stay informed, stay entertained, and have the best Pride you can have, so flag these books now.