I wanted to share just some of the amazing books I’ve read so far this year. I’ve tried to choose exclusively fantasy and queer fiction and as such, I’ve now gained quite the list of books I’d love to recommend to anyone who wants to read more queer witch/fantasy books.
I made a new year’s resolution to read as much as possible this year – and I’m already 15 books in! The way I have got into the habit was through three simple changes.
- Stop reading what I thought I should read and start reading what I wanted to.
- Stop putting pressure on myself to read solidly – one chapter a day is enough. Even a few pages.
- If you’re not enjoying a book… Stop reading it! Start another one.
I will say, I’ve read a few books that made hollow attempts at including queer characters (Here’s looking at you, Stephanie Garber…) and somehow that feels worse than just excluding us altogether… What do we want? Well-rounded LGBTQIA+ characters. When do we want them? NOW.
I adored this book – it was so cute! The story of a Latinx trans kid who falls in love with a ghost that he brings back from the dead by accident when trying to prove himself as a ‘brujx‘ (witch) – plus it’s got a brilliant YA mystery story and the main character is so wonderfully awkward and relatable. ★★★★
Wild and Wicked Things
A story about a woman who moves in next to a coven / found family of queer witches. A mystery of sorts, this book has a beautiful setting and the characters are lovable. I became so invested in the secondary characters in the coven! One thing to note, the pacing was a liiiittle off. But I enjoyed it all the same! ★★★
Not Good for Maidens
A multi-generational pact between witches and goblins; the story splits between that of an openly asexual protagonist and flashbacks through the life of her bisexual aunt, in a horror-fantasy story that will leave you gasping. ★★★★
King of Battle and Blood
Although this is a story about a vampire king and a princess falling in love in a world filled with ancient witchcraft, the amount of queer representation is astounding and did not go unnoticed. So many of the supporting characters were in long-term, lasting gay relationships. Human and vampire, vampire and vampire… everyone was enjoying their sexuality – not just in the raunchy straight scenes shared by the main couple. ★★★★★
Full title; ‘Becoming Dangerous: Witchy Femmes, Queer Conjurers and Magical Rebels on Summoning the Power to Resist’ . This book gets a special mention as it’s not a work of fiction, but a series of essays by real, queer witches. I found it incredibly inspiring and powerful, so if you love queer, witch fantasy books it’s definitely worth branching out and having a read. ★★★★★
Some more special mentions!
A little shout out to some more fantasy books with exceptional queer representation but not necessarily witchy!
The Coldest Girl in Coldtown ★★★★ explores a world in which vampires are common knowledge and are kept in isolation and live-streamed to the world, gaining them celebrity status. One of the protagonist’s main allies is a trans girl, and the book explores a little about the reasons why some people might want to be turned into a vampire even more or less than others.
Vox Machina: Kith & Kin of the Critical Role ★★★★★ takes place in the Dungeons and Dragons world of Faerun, and tells of twins Vax and Vex, who get caught up in a plot that threatens to break the siblings apart. Queer relationships abound, not only are both of the twins bisexual, but also many of the characters around them are LGBTQIA+ too, including two non-binary characters.
The Wayfarer Series ★★★★ by Becky Chambers and are what I’d call ‘Gateway Sci-Fi’. They’re the way into a sci-fi world if you’re not yet used to the tropes. They are very forward thinking, very communist and very queer – including alien races that can change their sex, some who do not have genders and just ya’ standard run-of-the-mill girl-loves-AI scenarios.
And I am still reading…
I’ve made a pledge to read more queer witchy books this year (since I’ve got years of catching up to do…) so I’m sure I’ll have more books to share my thoughts on soon! Happy reading <3