Kicking off a summer primed for excellent reading, we asked some of our favorite queer authors for their rom com book recommendations!
Be sure to get these books (and the authors’ books who recommended them) at your favorite bookstore or library!
I adored Nozomi’s misadventures in Love And Other Natural Disasters by Misa Suguira! This is a delightful confection of a summer book that starts with Nozomi’s own desire to reinvent herself in the hopes of turning her fake relationship with the glamorous Willow into the summer romance she always dreamed of while trying to get along with the prickly Dela at her museum job. I loved the heartfelt feeling of family especially with Nozomi’s own journey and relationship with her grandmother and the exploration of second chances and what it means to be queer and Asian-American and all the messy in-betweens of learning who you are. —C.B. Lee, author of A Clash of Steel: A Treasure Island Remix
One of my very favorite queer romantic comedies of the past year was She Drives Me Crazy by Kelly Quindlen. This book was an absolute delight from start to finish. The dialogue is spot on, the characters are hilariously snarky, and the plot—in all of its enemies-to-lovers, cheerleader/basketball player, fake dating goodness—is like your favorite nineties teen movie delivered in book form. I couldn’t recommend this title enough. —Leah Johnson, author of Rise To The Sun
Fueled by rage, two exes battle it out to be crowned Homecoming King. These messy characters make downright awful decisions, which translates to a gripping story. While not your typical fluffy romance, this book shows readers that no matter how broken we think we are, there’s someone out there who will love us regardless. —Isaac Fitzsimons, author of The Passing Playbook
By design, I’m not a huge romance reader. But sometimes, I’ll pick one up and have my world completely rocked. You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson was one of those reads for me. Set in Indiana, a Black teen outlier has to compete to become prom queen to secure a scholarship to her dream school. I picked this book up because it sounded adorable, and the cover is very charming. What I wasn’t expecting was a sweet and heartwarming romance between the main character, Liz Lightly, and new student Amanda “Mack” McCarthy.
You Should See Me in a Crown is the novel I wanted as a teen. I never had a prom, or prom court (I’m still convinced it’s made up for fiction), but I loved that it was the centre of the novel. The planning and running for prom queen is akin to planning a war. Liz is a brilliant main character, one that is relatable in her fears and wants. She loves her family and she’s determined to get what she wants. Liz and Mack’s romance is the type of love story I yearned to read. They are full of affection for one another, even as they are running against each other for prom queen. Most importantly, seeing Liz grow into herself, and become more confident as she achieves her goal was a highlight of the novel. —Nekesa Afia, author of Dead Dead Girls
Roadqueen: Eternal Roadtrip to Love by Mira Ong Chua. A fast-paced, heightened comic in the tradition of yuri manga, Roadqueen is about the cocky Leo – who just wants to ride her beloved motorcycle – avoiding legions of fangirls and having her bike (and maybe her heart) stolen by a mysterious girl. It’s funny, sweet, and sexy, and the characters jump off the page. —Molly Ostertag, author of The Girl From The Sea
Favorite queer romance: Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas.
I love the ways that Yadriel and Julian both see the best and truest versions of each other and how that becomes evident as they go from mutually annoyed to being one another’s fiercest protector. Also, I’m such a fan of chaotic characters and Yads and Julian are so perfectly chaotic good falls for chaotic chaotic. —Jonny Garza Villa, author of Fifteen Hundred Miles From The Sun