I’m back with the second half of the LGBTQIA+ romance books coming out this June! Did you doubt it for a second? Maybe, but only because you technically don’t know me! Anyway, it’s your resident romance redneck with eight more book recommendations for people who want to freshen their summer with some rainbow reads!
Release Date: June 14
Valiant Ladies is starting us off with a bang! If you’ve been wanting period drama with Latinx lesbians as the main characters, you’re in luck! Valiant Ladies is set during the seventeenth century and is a historical fiction book inspired by Latinx teenagers known as the Valiant Ladies of Potosí. Look, if you aren’t intrigued by sword-fighting lesbians based on Peruvian legend, we can’t be friends…
The book follows Eustaquia and Ana as they exchange skirts for swords when night falls. This is a bit of a ritual between the two, and eventually feelings begin to bloom as they explore the streets of Potosí. But—gasp!—the murder of Eustaquia’s older brother shakes the Spanish Empire. The girls immediately jump into investigation mode, uncovering things they aren’t sure they should know.
A Song of Silver and Gold
Release Date: June 15
A Song of Silver and Gold gives me vibes right off the bat that it’s more twisted than Disney’s version of The Little Mermaid, making it closer to the original tale by Hans Christian Andersen. I can’t speak to the ending because I don’t know it, but based on the synopsis… that’s what I’m picking up.
A Song of Silver and Gold is a sapphic retelling of The Little Mermaid. Captain Kae, otherwise known as Princess Kaelyn, recently lost her brother in a siren attack. She now vows to eliminate them from the face of the planet. Aqeara is a siren warrior who just recently caused the death of her kingdom’s princess. The only way for her kingdom to revive the princess (and for Aqeara’s banishment to get lifted) is for Aqeara to carve out the heart of the princess’s murderer… Princess Kaelyn.
Release Date: June 21
Epically Earnest is a sapphic story inspired by Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest. Y’all, is this not one of the cutest covers? I’m someone who judges books by their covers, and I can already tell you I’m in.
Jane Worthing’s claim to fame is that she was a viral sensation when she was just one year old and her biological family dropped her off at a Poughkeepsie train station. Now, Jane is a senior in high school and dealing with what seems to be the end of the world. She isn’t sure if she wants to search for her bio family, and she’s wrestling with an all-consuming crush on her best friend’s cousin, Gwen. Things are starting to build up, and she knows it’s bad to bottle up her feelings, but she’s never really been the earnest type. Epically Earnest takes readers through Jane’s journey as she figures out the right path for herself.
This Wicked Fate
Release Date: June 21
This Wicked Fate is a continuation of This Poison Heart. Just like the first book, readers can expect to find magical Black girls, sapphic themes, and reimagined Greek mythology! In the world of book recommendations, I can’t recommend Kalynn Bayron’s duology enough.
Briseis has one way to save her mother, but it is next to impossible. She’s got to find the final piece of the dangerous Absyrtus Heart. How will Briseis get out of this pickle, you ask? Oh, just by turning to blood relatives she’s never met before, learning about secret powers she never knew they had, and taking her rightful place in their ancient lineage. Easy peasy. Only there’s a wrench in Briseis’s plans: She’s not the only one after the Heart.
Release Date: June 21
The Loophole is equal parts second chance romance, epic myth retelling, and journey around the world. Readers follow Sy, a seventeen-year-old queer Indian-Muslim boy who unfortunately placed all of his happiness eggs in the basket of his boyfriend, Farouk. He returned the favor by promptly leaving Sy to try and “fix the world.” Now Sy is wishing for another chance… but he never expected his wish to be granted.
So, when a mysterious girl slams into the front entrance of the coffee shop he works at and grants him three wishes for his help, he doesn’t really know what to do. But Sy has to take a leap of faith when his dad kicks him out for being outed, so now he’s traveling across the world with his otherworldly friend. Can he find Farouk for one last chance at rebuilding his life and their relationship? I’m so ready for this one.
Bad Things Happen Here
Release Date: June 28
Bad Things Happen Here is set on a haunted island. Say no more, I’m already sold! Luca Laine Thomas is our main character, and readers follow Luca as she learns about unsolved deaths of young women on the island of Parris. Her interest grows as she realizes that the people of Parris sweep the deaths under the rug to maintain their polished look to the outside world.
Her world breaks, though, when she returns home to see police cars crowding her driveway. Luca’s sister, Whitney, becomes the latest victim of the curse. Now Luca is committed to the investigation, knowing that the Parris police will do the bare minimum. Gasoline is thrown onto the fire in the form of a shocking betrayal that goes on Luca’s list of things to solve. What truth of the curse will Luca come face to face with by the end of this novel?
Now if you’re wanting something with an undercurrent of romance, I’ve got you covered! These next two don’t have the romance front and center, it’s more of a a key background player (or at least I’m banking on it!). I’m reading them regardless, but to fit in this list they’ve got to meet certain criteria and they’re just scraping by.
The Sea Knows My Name
Laura Brooke Robson
Release Date: June 14
The Sea Knows My Name is Laura Brooke Robson’s second book. Let’s go through the checklist of awesomeness: Climate catastrophes? Check. Reimagined Greek myths? Check. Bisexual male characters? Check. I’m very easily persuaded to read something, and I’m already hooked on The Sea Knows My Name.
Thea Fowler was taught to be strong and invulnerable by her mother, Clementine Fowler, one of the world’s most notorious pirates (did I mention pirates are in this?). Unfortunately for Thea, none of her mother’s lessons stuck with her. When Thea thinks that she’s finally found a way out from under Clementine’s thumb, she’s thrown into a whirlwind. She meets her first love and, in turn, experiences her first betrayal… how is she meant to be strong when she’s caught in the undertow of life?
A Midnight Dark and Golden
Release Date: June 23
A Midnight Dark and Golden is the thrilling conclusion of the Midnight’s Twins trilogy. Fern and Ollie are twins in the city of Annwn, the dream mirror of London where people’s dreams play out around them in their sleep. They’re both Knights and trusted guardians of said Dreamers. Fern’s nemesis, Medraut, is causing trouble in Annwn, making it more and more dangerous by the day. Her only hope to defeat Medraut is to retrieve Excalibur and locate the Grail. The only issue is that Fern isn’t sure if she can save the world she loves, as doubt is running rampant through her bones after the loss of her powers. This book is a rollercoaster of emotions, and I’m an adrenaline junkie needing a fix.
This pride month, I’m excited to be reading my fill of LGBTQIA+ romance books! It is my most sincere hope that these books are of interest to you and that they’ve made their way onto your TBR lists.
If you’re interested in something a bit straight-er, check out another list of book recommendations from your resident romance redneck here!