Today is the Day of Silence, which was created by the Gay Straight Lesbian Education Network (GSLEN). This holiday is to protest the harmful effects of society and culture on the LGBTQ community. National student-led demonstration is taking a vow of silence that speaks loud to voice awareness of the harassments and discrimination that the LGBTQ community faced.
I see this Day of Silence as an opportunity to showcase people who don’t have a voice and those of the LGBTQ community. Here are three LGBTQ romance books and with selective mutism.
Chef’s Kiss by Jarrett Melendez
This wonderful queer graphic novel will have you swooning and rooting for the protagonist. Art and illustrations were created by Hank Jones, Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou, and Danica Brine.
Ben Cook is a college graduate who majored in creative writing. He has been planning his next move, to find a job in the creative writing industry. But no such luck. No matter what internship, or entry level job he finds, the interviews don’t go well.
Suddenly one ‘Now hiring, no experience required’ sign changes everything. Being a new restaurant chef assistant is an opportunity he didn’t think he’d apply for. There are three things that he soon discovers:
- Ben isn’t a bad chef
- He can’t wait to complete all cooking tests thrown his way
- Chef Liam is so gorgeous
With his new crush making his cheeks pink, he puts his college friends and creative writing aside, while focusing on cooking as a new passion. Can cooking be a new career path, or is writing still his pursuit?
Never Been Kissed by Timothy Janovsky
For fans of the YA novel and Netflix movie To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, here is the wonderful gay version, with a twist.
Wren Roland has never been kissed before; he has never been the picture perfect image of two lips meeting. On an impulse, Wren decides to email all his boy crushes from school that he wanted to kiss, before he came out. Although the impulse is shocking the next day, he brushes it off; who would really read their emails nowadays.
Attach number one crush from the list: Derick Haveford, and you have a disaster of an encounter. Wren didn’t know Derick would be the new social media intern he’d have to work with at his job at drive- in theater!
Although it’s been a long time, there is something about Derick that’s different. Everyone thinks they have him figured out–handsome and has his father’s connections. Let’s not forget Derick ignoring their past of an ‘almost kiss’ scenario. Wren isn’t a little kid anymore, so he brushes it off.
With a new project to help save the drive-in theater, they must work closely together. But how much is too close and will Wren get his perfect kiss after all?
Count Your Lucky Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur
Margot Cooper does hookups, she doesn’t do relationships; not after the last attempt which was a disaster. It’s safer for everyone, including herself. But when most of her friends are ‘paired up’ with their one and onlys, she wonders if it’s time to go back into the dating pool.
Then suddenly fate slaps her in the face by bringing her best friend from the past, Olivia Grant, back into her life. She is the best woman for her friend’s wedding and Olivia is their wedding planner. Ten years have gone by, and Margot’s first love, childhood friend, her everything, is back in her life.
Olivia has been married and divorced. An opportunity to be a wedding planner in Seattle was an opportunity of a lifetime. Seeing her long time friend after so long was a shock. With unfortunate circumstances that lead her to ask for a place to stay, Margot is more than happy to invite her to her place.
Can all these years of unrequited feelings bring them together?
Baby Teeth by Zoje Stage
Heard of the Freud complex? Well, it’s the dynamic of being a daddy’s girl and wanting to be better than your mother, and this book follows that plot line.
Hanna is a sweet, silent girl who is mute. She is adored by her dad, the only person who seems to understand her. Hanna feels close to her father and wants all his attention. But her mom seems to be getting in the way. Hanna must figure out a way to get rid of her for good. With several tricks up her sleeve, will she be the only girl in daddy’s eyes?
Mother Suzette loves her daughter Hanna dearly. But years of difficulty with home school and Hanna’s strange behavior, has left her ragged and health ridden. Hanna’s tricks have become more elaborate and she wonders what she can do to help her only daughter.
Devil and The Blue Bird by Jennifer Mason-Black
Here is a mystical read that is a magical adventure filled with demons, sisterhood, motherhood, and finding your family.
Blue Riley has always struggled with demons ever since her mother’s death due to cancer. Her mother was a musical icon to her. One day Blue encounters a beautiful devil in the crossroads of her town. She is shocked to see her sister, Cass, her soul. She thought Cass ran away, but now is her chance to get her back. The devil makes a deal, which ends up taking away Blue’s voice. Without a voice to be heard, she must find a way to track Cass.
With a guitar, mementos, and magical boots in hand, she sets off on a magical journey. But when the devil makes another deal, Blue questions the good and evil in the world. Can she seek help from unlikely sources, and how can she save the only family she has?
A Quiet Kind of Thunder by Sara Bernard
Steffi has been selectively mute most of her life. For so long she has been invisible and she’s comfortable that way. Not having a voice can make you fade into the background, but can she rise up?
Rhys can see her. He can hear her, and he’s deaf. Rhys is the new boy at school. Steffi knows sign language which makes her Rhy’s tour guide around the school. As they find a way to communicate, Steffi realizes a connection she’s never had before. She soon discovers a voice and falls for the person who makes her feel brave.
This cute story is an easy read and helps give perspective to mutism, selective mutism, and deaf young adults.
If you want to take a vow of silence and read these wonderful books on LGBTQ and Selective Mutism, I encourage you to read them! For more on different kinds of book recommendations, please go to Bookstr.
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