Pride month banned books

PEN America stands in support with LGBTQ+ writers and readers as we promote and celebrate our stories throughout June. 

Books provide needed outlets for LGBTQ+ individuals and allies to explore personal identity and to build systems of support based on representative and informed sources. The last two years have seen unmitigated attacks on LGBTQ+ content in public school libraries, with 26% of banned books featuring LGBTQ+ characters and themes. This month, and every month after, PEN America pushes back against the removal of books that center LGBTQ+ stories and authors, and will continue to fight against the forces that seek to undermine LGBTQ+ expression. All students deserve to see themselves in every kind of story, from the pages of an elementary school picture book to those of a high school’s history textbook. LGBTQ+ expression is free expression. 

Pride month has always been a moment of both defiance and celebration. As we continue to fight to freely read and write our stories, here is a list of banned books by and about the LGBTQ+ community that will keep Pride going long after June is over:

1. All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson

2. And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson, Peter Parnell and Henry Cole

3. Be Gay, Do Comics: Queer History, Memoir, and Satire by The Nib

4. Cinderella Is Dead by Kalynn Bayron

5. Flamer by Mike Curato

6. Gender Queer: A Memoir by Maia Kobabe

7. Pride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag by Rob Sanders

8. The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang

9. Red, White, and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

10. This Book Is Gay by Juno Dawson

11. When Aidan Became a Brother by Kyle Lukoff and Kaylani Juanita

12. Uncle Bobby’s Wedding by Sarah S. Brannen and  Lucia Soto

13. Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan

14. Hurricane Child by Kacen Callender

15. The Magic Fish by Trung Le Nguyen

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