schwule, lesbische und trans-Jugendbücher: Empfehlungen

lgbt book recommendations

Top 10:

Fun Home. A Family Tragicomic: Eine Familie von Gezeichneten Two Boys Kissing The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay Ask the Passengers The Vast Fields of Ordinary

Stuck Rubber Baby The Lost Language Of Cranes Pedro and Me: Friendship, Loss, and What I Learned This Book Is Gay Natural Order


this blog post is bilingual (German notes in orange)

ich poste auf Deutsch UND Englisch, dieses Mal


lgbt young adult ya books


since 2010, I sampled nearly 200 LGBTQQIA Young Adult novels. Here are my favorites: books that I have not read yet, but that pulled me in quickly, made it to my to-read-list and will be read soon. let me know what you think about the titles and put your own suggestions (or warnings!) in the comments. [the summaries that I quote for each book have been shortened and edited.]

seit 2010 suche ich Bücher mit schwulen, lesbischen, bi-, trans-, inter-, asexuellen, queeren Figuren. hier sind die Jugendbücher, deren Leseproben mich überzeugt haben und die ich mir vorgemerkt habe: ich freue mich über Ergänzungen und Kommentare! [die zitierten englischen Klappentexte sind gekürzt.] 


01) NANCY GARDEN: Annie on my Mind

  • 234 pages, USA 1982
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.95 of 5

„Two teenage girls whose friendship blossoms into love and who, despite pressures from family and school, promise to be true to each other and their feelings. This groundbreaking book has been banned from many school libraries and even publicly burned in Kansas City.“

  • smart, likeable, engaging YA pioneer: cute, calm, sane
  • stilles, intelligentes Jugendbuch über eine lesbische Freundschaft

Annie on My Mind


02) JULIE MAYHEW: The Big Lie

  • 384 pages, UK 2015
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.34 of 5

„Contemporary Nazi England: Jessika Keller obeys her father and does her best to impress Herr Fisher at the Bund Deutscher Mädel meetings. Her neighbour Clementine is outspoken and radical. And the regime has noticed. Jess cannot keep both her perfect life and her dearest friend. But which can she live without?“

  • an alternate history novel about a lesbian teenager trying to cope in a totalitarian UK
  • might be too didactic or simple
  • Nazis beherrschen England, und eine lesbische Schülerin sucht ihren Platz im Regime
  • könnte etwas platt oder simpel sein

The Big Lie

03) AMI POLONSKY: Gracefully Grayson

  • 250 pages, USA 2014
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.19 of 5

„Alone at home, twelve-year-old Grayson glows; but at school, he’s determined to fly under the radar. He has been holding onto a secret: “he” is a girl on the inside, stuck in the wrong gender’s body. Strengthened by an unexpected friendship and a caring teacher who gives her a chance to step into the spotlight, Grayson might finally have the tools to let her inner light shine.“

  • mainstream middle grade novel with a likeable narrator
  • sympathischer Mainstream für jüngere Leser*innen, vielleicht etwas seicht

Gracefully Grayson


04) LISA WILLIAMSON: „The Art of being normal“

„David Piper has always been an outsider. His parents think he’s gay. The school bully thinks he’s a freak. Only his two best friends know the real truth – David wants to be a girl. On the first day at his new school Leo Denton has one goal – to be invisible. Attracting the attention of the most beautiful girl in year eleven is definitely not part of that plan. When Leo stands up for David in a fight, an unlikely friendship forms.“

    • likeable, but very slow novel about a trans girl
    • angelesen: sympathisch, aber zu langsam und, vielleicht, einfallslos/zahnlos

The Art of Being Normal



„Fleeing an abusive father, fourteen-year-old Radboy takes to the road with Jonnyboy, an older friend and mentor. On the bus, they hook up with Finn and Critter, a couple of speed-freak boyfriends. Later, Radboy stays behind in San Francisco, where the underground world inspires his own burgeoning sexual and emotional desires.“

  • deaf main character, a stream-of-consciousness narrative with Ebonics and street language… engaging, literary, likeable, but might be dated or too idealistic
  • gehörlose Hauptfigur, Straßen-, Skater-, Szenesprache (die deutsche Übersetzung kam nicht gut an), komplexer, lyrischer, aber vielleicht kitschiger Roman

War Boy


06) BILL KONIGSBERG: Openly Straight

„Rafe is a normal teenager from Boulder, Colorado. He’s been out since 8th grade, and he isn’t teased, and he goes to other high schools and talks about tolerance and stuff. When he transfers to an all-boys‘ boarding school in New England, he decides to keep his sexuality a secret — not so much going back in the closet as starting over with a clean slate. But then he sees a classmate break down. He meets a teacher who challenges him to write his story. And most of all, he falls in love with Ben . . . who doesn’t even know that love is possible.“

  • Optimistic, witty, simple and engaging: a feel-good novel for an all-ages audience
  • sonniges, schlichtes, vielleicht etwas didaktisches Buch übers Dazugehören

Openly Straight


07) BILL KONIGSBERG: The Porcupine of Truth

  • 336 pages, USA 2015
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.05 of 5

„An epic road trip involving family history and gay history: Carson Smith is resigned to spending his summer in Billings, Montana, helping his mom take care of his father, a dying alcoholic he doesn’t really know. Then he meets Aisha Stinson, a [gay] beautiful girl who has run away from her difficult family, and Pastor John Logan, who’s long held a secret regarding Carson’s grandfather, who disappeared without warning or explanation thirty years before.“

  • mainstream novel about a straight (?) boy who crushes on a lesbian girl
  • heterosexueller (?) Junge verliebt sich während eines Road Trips in eine Lesbe
  • I also liked Konigsberg’s 2008 debut, „Out of the Pocket“ (about a gay quarterback)

The Porcupine of Truth …and: Out of the Pocket


08) ANN BAUSUM: Stonewall. Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights

  • 128 pages, USA 2015
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.04 of 5

„In 1969 being gay in the United States was a criminal offense. People went to jail, lost jobs, and were disowned by their families for being gay. There were few safe havens. The Stonewall Inn, a Mafia-run, filthy, overpriced bar in New York City’s Greenwich Village, was one of them. One hot June night, when cops pounded on the door of the Stonewall, almost nothing went as planned. Tensions were high. The crowd refused to go away. The raid became a riot. The riot became a catalyst and triggered an explosive demand for gay rights.“

  • YA nonfiction: slim, but informative introduction to the gay pride movement’s history
  • kurzes, schlichtes Sachbuch, das erklärt, wie es zum Christopher Street Day etc. kam

Stonewall: Breaking Out in the Fight for Gay Rights


09) KEN SETTERINGTON: Branded by the Pink Triangle

  • 155 pages, Canada 2013
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.91 of 5

„Germany, especially Berlin, was one of the most tolerant places for homosexuals in the world. When the Nazis came to power, raids, arrests, prison sentences and expulsions became the daily reality. When the concentration camps were built, homosexuals were imprisoned along with Jews and any other groups the Nazis wanted to suppress. The pink triangle, sewn onto prison uniforms, became the symbol of the persecution of homosexuals, a persecution that would continue for many years after the war. A mix of historical research, first person accounts.“

  • YA nonfiction: slim, informative, suitable for all ages… and with reprints of pictures and documents. It’s annoying that there’s no German edition.
  • kurzes Sachbuch mit vielen Bildern und Dokumenten. absurd, dass es keine deutsche Version gibt.

Branded by the Pink Triangle


10) APRIL SINCLAIR: „Coffee will make you black“

„Set on Chicago’s Southside in the mid-to-late 60s, April Sinclair writes frankly about a young black woman’s sexuality, and about the confusion Stevie faces when she realizes she’s more attracted to the school nurse — who is white — than her teenage boyfriend. Stevie is a bookworm, yet she longs to fit in with the cool crowd. Fighting her mother every step of the way, she begins to experiment with talkin‘ trash and „kicking butt“. With the assassination of Dr. King she gains a new political awareness.“

    • likeable historical mainstream novel
    • sympathischer Zeitgeschichte-Roman fürs breite Publikum

Coffee Will Make You Black


11) BENJAMIN ALIRE SÁENZ: „Aristotle and Dante discover the Secrets of the Universe“

„Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all. As the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives.“

    • philosophical and big-hearted coming-of-age novel, super-popular with schools and educators
    • Pädagog*innen und Schulen lieben dieses weitherzige, nachdenkliche Buch über Freundschaft

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe


12) ALEXANDER CHEE: Edinburgh

  • 224 pages, USA 2001
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.22 of 5

„Twelve-year-old Fee is a gifted Korean-American soprano in a boys‘ choir in Maine whose choir director reveals himself to be a serial pedophile. Fee and his friends are forced to bear grief, shame, and pain that endure long after the director is imprisoned. Fee survives even as his friends do not, but a deep-seated horror and dread accompany him through his self-destructive college days and after, until he meets a beautiful young student named Warden and is forced to confront the demons of his brutal past.“

  • intense and very literary coming-of-age novel about trauma. I’m intrigued – but Alexander Chee can be stuffy and boring in his essays
  • literarischer Roman über Musik und Trauma. Chees Essays/Nonfiction-Texte sind oft recht langweilig – aber das Buch wirkt vielversprechend:



13) ADAM SILVERA: More happy than not

  • 293 pages, USA 2015
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.23 of 5

„In the months after his father’s suicide, it’s been tough for 16-year-old Aaron Soto. When his girlfriend Genevieve leaves for a couple of weeks, Aaron spends all his time hanging out with this new guy, Thomas. Aaron’s crew notices, and they’re not exactly thrilled. But Aaron can’t deny the happiness Thomas brings. Aaron considers turning to the Leteo Institute’s revolutionary memory-alteration procedure to straighten himself out.“

  • urban novel about grief, with some sci-fi elements: I liked the tone
  • Großstadtroman über Trauer, mit Sci-Fi-Elementen: mir gefallen Ton und Stimmung

More Happy Than Not


14) MICHELLE TEA: The passionate Mistakes and intricate Corruption of one Girl in America

  • 192 pages, USA 1998
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.84 of 5

„The turbulent adventures of one girl in America as she moves from Boston’s teenage goth world to whoring in New Age Tucson before finally arriving in San Francisco’s dyke underground. Honest, sarcastic, lyrical and direct, Tea’s writing is possibly the most literate and sophisticated treatment of underground dyke culture ever written.“

  • fast, gritty and literary underground novel
  • schneller, gut geschriebener Underground- und Drogen-Roman

The Passionate Mistakes and Intricate Corruption of One Girl in America


15) L.P. HARTLEY: The Go-Between

„Summering with a fellow schoolboy on a great English estate, Leo encounters a world of unimagined luxury. But when his friend’s beautiful older sister enlists him as the unwitting messenger in her illicit love affair, the aftershocks will be felt for years.“

  • calm, melancholic and very popular classic coming-of-age novel with a main character that might or might not be queer/gay/bisexual
  • traurig-schöner Coming-of-Age-Klassiker. ist die Hauptfigur bi/schwul? oder doch nur „verliebt“ in das erwachsene Liebespaar, für den es zum Botenjungen wird?

The Go-Between


16) PAUL RUSSELL: Sea of Tranquility

  • 384 pages, USA 1994
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.96 of 5

„An extreordinary novel that traces a disintegrating nuclear family across two tumultuous decades of American life – from the early ’60s to the ’80s – and is told in a quartet of voices: astronaut Allen Cloud, his wife, their gay son, Jonathan, and his friend/lover, ranging in time and emotion from the optimism of the first moon shot to the dark landscape of the age of AIDS.“

  • engaging domestic fiction / family novel
  • Familienroman mit zwei schwulen Figuren: kein Jugendbuch, aber viel Coming-of-Age

Sea of Tranquillity


17) ZOE WHITTALL: Bottle Rocket Hearts

  • 189 pages, Canada 2007
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.85 of 5

„Montreal: Revolution seems possible when you’re 18, like Eve. She is pining to get out of her parents‘ house and find a girl who wants to kiss her back. She meets Della: mysterious, defiantly non-monogamous, an avid separatist, and ten years older. On the night of the 1995 referendum, politics and romance come to a head and Eve’s naiveté begins to fade.“

  • political coming-of-age novel set in French-speaking Canada
  • politischer Coming-of-Age-Roman in Montreal

Bottle Rocket Hearts


18) ROBIN TALLEY: Lies we tell ourselves

  • 384 pages, USA 2014
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.05 of 5

„In 1959 Virginia, Sarah Dunbar is one of the first black students to attend the previously all-white Jefferson High School. Linda Hairston is the daughter of one of the town’s most vocal opponents of school integration. She has been taught all her life that the races should be kept separate but equal. Forced to work together on a school project, Sarah and Linda must confront harsh truths about race, power and how they really feel about one another.“

  • a lesbian mixed-race couple in a school in Virginia? this seems slow-moving, but intense.
  • lesbische Schülerinnen – eine weiß, eine schwarz – in den Südstaaten? der Roman beginnt langsam, aber ich habe hohe Erwartungen.

Lies We Tell Ourselves



  • 292 pages, USA 2011
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.10 of 5

„Fourteen-year-old Stark McClellan (nicknamed Stick because he’s tall and thin) is bullied for being “deformed” – he was born with only one ear. His older brother Bosten is always there to defend Stick. But the boys can’t defend one another from their abusive parents. When Stick realizes Bosten is gay, he knows that to survive his father’s anger, Bosten must leave home. Stick has to find his brother, or he will never feel whole again.“

  • one of the most popular gritty/sardonic/inventive/issue-pushing YA authors, I’m sure that Smith has smart things to say about abuse, family and homeless youths.
  • Smith ist einer der progressivsten und originellsten US-Jugendbuchautoren. ich bin sicher, er hat kluge Dinge zu sagen über misshandelte, obdachlose Teenager.



20) SCOTT HEIM: Mysterious Skin

  • 292 pages, USA 1995
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.08 of 5

„At the age of eight Brian Lackey is found bleeding under the crawl space of his house, having endured something so traumatic that he cannot remember an entire five–hour period of time. He begins to believe that he may have been the victim of an alien encounter. Neil McCormick is a teenage hustler and a terrorist of sorts.“

  • a thriller about child abuse, with hypersexualized characters: this might be pretty trashy… but pretty unique.
  • ein Thriller über schwule Teenager und Kindesmissbrauch: könnte trashig und durcheinander sein – ist aber auf jeden Fall originell.

Mysterious Skin


21) KIM FIELDING: Motel. Pool.

  • 206 pages, USA 2014
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.15 of 5

„In the mid-1950s, Jack Dayton flees his working-class prospects in Omaha and heads to Hollywood, convinced he’ll be the next James Dean. But poor decisions ultimately find him at a cheap motel off Route 66, lifeless at the bottom of the pool. Sixty years later, Tag Manning, feeling hopeless and empty, flees his most recent relationship mistake and finds he’s transporting a hitchhiking ghost. Jack and Tag come to find much-needed friends in each other.“

  • corny, but amusing and original gay romance road novel.
  • Trash/Kitsch, aber originall und amüsant: eine schwule Road-Romanze mit Geist.

Motel. Pool.


22) JOSEPH OLSHAN: Nightswimmer

„Ten years ago, Will Kaplan and his lover went for a night swim in the Pacific Ocean—but only Will emerged. In the decade that followed, Will relocated to the other end of the continent, filling his days with shallow and pointless affairs, unable to come to terms with the bizarre disappearance that could have been a tragic drowning, a well-planned abandonment, or both. Immersing himself in New York’s gay bar and disco scene, and a hedonistic Fire Island culture darkened by the grim specter of AIDS, Will meets Sean Paris, a young man as tortured and damaged by the past as Will himself.“

  • melancholic, maybe kitschy relationship novel of the AIDS era
  • Liebe in Zeiten von AIDS: melancholischer, aber vllt. kitschiger Beziehungsroman




  • 240 pages, USA 1988
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.89 of 5

„In 1963, being different can be illegal-as sixteen-year-old Latisha, a lesbian runaway, discovers when she is sentenced to treatment in the locked ward of a mental hospital for being „incorrigible“ and a threat to society. Her best friend in the ward is Anna, an older deaf woman committed for depression. Although she’s forbidden to communicate in sign language, Anna teaches Latisha and gives her a name: „Bird-Eyes.“A brilliant novel of friendship and defiance, of passion and resistance.“

  • dark and gripping coming-of-age novel
  • düsterer, mitreißender Coming-of-Age-Roman

Bird-Eyes (Stonewall Inn Editions)


24) JO KNOWLES: See you at Harry’s

  • 310 pages, USA 2012
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.09 of 5

„Twelve-year-old Fern feels invisible. Mom helps Dad run the family restaurant; Sarah is taking a gap year after high school; and Holden pretends that Mom and Dad and everyone else doesn’t know he’s gay, even as he fends off bullies at school. Then there’s Charlie: three years old, a „surprise“ baby, the center of everyone’s world. If it wasn’t for Ran, Fern’s calm and positive best friend, there’d be nowhere to turn. But then tragedy strikes- and Fern feels not only more alone than ever, but also responsible for the accident that has wrenched her family apart.“

  • feel-good, intelligent middle-grade novel
  • intelligentes Wohlfühl-Buch für Leser*innen zwischen 11 und 14

See You at Harry's


25) MARY RENAULT: The Charioteer

  • 352 pages, UK 1953
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.06 of 5

„World War II: Laurie Odell is sent to a rural veterans’ hospital in England to convalesce. There he befriends the young, bright Andrew, a conscientious objector serving as an orderly. As they find solace and companionship together in the idyllic surroundings of the hospital, their friendship blooms into a discreet, chaste romance. Then one day, Ralph Lanyon, a mentor from Laurie’s schoolboy days, suddenly reappears in Laurie’s life, and draws him into a tight-knit social circle of world-weary gay men. Laurie is forced to choose between the sweet ideals of innocence and the distinct pleasures of experience.“

  • one of the earliest gay mainstream novels: a well-written romance
  • populärer Bestseller aus den 50ern mit schwulen Figuren, kompetent geschrieben

The Charioteer


26) LARRY DUPLECHAN: Blackbird

  • 225 pages, USA 1986
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.05 of 5

„A funny, moving, gay coming-of-age novel about growing up black and gay in Southern California. The lead character, Johnnie Ray Rousseau, is a high school student upset at losing the lead role in the school staging of Romeo and Juliet; his best friend has been beaten badly by his father, and his girlfriend is pressuring him to have sex for the first time. All the while, he’s intrigued by Marshall MacNeill, a fellow drama class member.“

  • likeable and quick slice-of-life novel with a gay black main character.
  • sympathischer Alltags- und High-School-Roman mit einer schwulen Hauptfigur of Color.



27) TOM SPANBAUER: Now is the Hour

  • 480 pages, USA 2006
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.10 of 5

„The year is 1967, and Rigby John Klusener, seventeen years old and finally leaving Pocatello, Idaho, is on the highway with his thumb out and a flower behind his ear, headed for San Francisco. Now Is the Hour traces his gradual emancipation from his strictly religious farming family and the small-minded, bigoted community.“

  • this could be overblown hippie trash… or a lyrical and grandiose coming-of-age opera.
  • sehr dick aufgetragen: könnte toll sein – aber vielleicht auch nur selbstverliebter Hippie-Trash.

Now Is the Hour


28) MICHAEL CUNNINGHAM: A Home at the End of the World

„Two boyhood friends: Jonathan, lonely, introspective, and unsure of himself; and Bobby, hip, dark, and inarticulate. In New York after college, Bobby moves in with Jonathan and his roommate, Clare. Bobby and Clare fall in love, scuttling the plans of Jonathan, who is gay, to father Clare’s child. Then, when Clare and Bobby have a baby, the three move to a small house upstate to raise „their“ child together and, with an odd friend, Alice, create a new kind of family.“

  • Cunningham can be didactic and one-dimensional – but I like the themes of this book, and I’m eager to see if the characters are more than clichès
  • Cunningham kann didaktisch und dümmlich sein – aber die Fragen des Romans interesssieren mich, und ich bin gespannt, ob die Figuren mehr sind als Klischees.

A Home at the End of the World


29) CHRISTOPHER BRAM: „Surprising myself“

„A brilliant debut novel about the relationship between a boy and his homosexual friend. After four years of living with relatives in Switzerland, seventeen-year-old Joel Scherzenlieb finds himself in the United States for the summer, working at a Boy Scout camp. There, he meets nineteen-year-old Corey Cobbett, a fellow counselor. Soon, Joel’s sarcastic, distant CIA father shows up and whisks him away to live with his mother, grandmother, and older sister on a farm in Virginia. As his dreams of going to college vanish, Joel faces his longest year yet. But everything changes when Corey returns to his life.“

  • it’s long, and it has elements of a conventional romance novel – but the author wrote „Gods and Monsters“ too, and I like the style.
  • vielleicht zu lang, vielleicht zu konventionell – aber der Autor hat die Vorlage zu „Gods and Monsters“ geschrieben… und hat Stil.

Surprising Myself: A Novel


30) JAMES DAWSON: All of the Above

  • 319 pages, UK 2015
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.31 of 5

„Sixteen-year-old Toria Bland arrives at her new school and meets the funny and foul-mouthed Polly, who’s the coolest girl that Toria has ever seen. Polly and the rest of the ‚alternative‘ kids take Toria under their wing. That’s when she meets the irresistible Nico Mancini, lead singer of a local band. Toria likes Nico, Nico likes Toria, but then there’s Polly…love and friendship have a funny way of going round in circles.“

  • I liked James Dawson’s self-help guide „This book is gay“. His novel has a goofy narrator and might be slightly immature – but so far, the constant joking is endearing.
  • Sehr viele Kalauer, recht pubertär – aber so schreibt James Dawson auch in „How to be Gay“, einem Ratgeber für Schüler*innen, den ich mochte.

All of the Above


31) EILEEN MYLES: Cool for you

  • 200 pages, USA 2000
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.84 of 5

„Grainy and stripped, this gritty novel traces the downbeat progress of a Catholic, working-class lesbian coming of age in Boston.“

  • sounds dark and depressing – but Myles in amazing stylist, and I enjoyed reading the first chapters.
  • klingt düster und deprimierend – aber Myles ist eine großartige Stilistin, und die ersten Kapitel machten mir Spaß.

Cool for You


32) MICHAEL THOMAS FORD: Suicide Notes

  • 295 pages, USA 2008
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 4.05 of 5

„Fifteen-year-old Jeff wakes up on New Year’s Day to find himself in the hospital. Make that the psychiatric ward. With the nutjobs. Clearly, this is all a huge mistake. Forget about the bandages on his wrists. Forget about his problems with his best friend, Allie, and her boyfriend, Burke. Jeff’s perfectly fine, perfectly normal, not like the other kids in the hospital with him. But a funny thing happens as his forty-five-day sentence drags on: the crazies start to seem less crazy. Suicide Notes is a darkly humorous novel that examines that fuzzy line between „normal“ and the rest of us.“

  • humorous mainstream YA novel about mental illness
  • Mainstream-YA-Roman über psychische Erkrankungen; humoristisch

Suicide Notes


33) NON PRATT: Trouble

„When the entire high school finds out that Hannah Shepard is pregnant via her ex-best friend, she has a full-on meltdown in her backyard. The one witness: Aaron Tyler, a transfer student and the only boy who doesn’t seem to want to get into Hannah’s pants. Confused and scared, Hannah needs someone to be on her side. Wishing to make up for his own past mistakes, Aaron does the unthinkable and offers to pretend to be the father of Hannah’s unborn baby. Even more unbelievable, Hannah hears herself saying “yes.” Told in alternating perspectives between Hannah and Aaron, Trouble is the story of two teenagers helping each other to move forward in the wake of tragedy and devastating choices.“

  • comedic, but intelligent recent YA novel
  • aktueller Young-Adult-Roman: auf Pointe geschrieben, aber intelligent



34) K.M. SOEHNLEIN: The World of normal Boys

  • 282 pages, USA 2000
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.96 of 5

„It is the late 1970s in suburban New Jersey, and while „normal boys“ are into cars, sports, and bullying their classmates, Robin Mackenzie enjoys day trips to New York City with his elegant mother. He dutifully plays the role of the good son for his meat-and-potatoes father, but everything changes in one, horrifying instant when a tragic accident wakes his family from their middle-American dream and plunges them into a spiral of slow destruction. As the MacKenzie family falls apart, Robin embarks on an explosive odyssey of sexual self-discovery that will take him into a complex future, beyond the world of normal boys.“

  • competently written, atmospheric coming-of-age
  • Coming-of-Age-Roman, atmosphärisch und stilsicher

The World of Normal Boys


35) ARIN ANDREWS: Some Assembly Required: The not-so-secret Life of a transgender Teen

  • 256 pages, USA 2014
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.93 of 5

„Seventeen-year-old Arin Andrews shares all the hilarious, painful, and poignant details of undergoing gender reassignment as a high school student in this winning memoir. He had been born in the body of a girl and there seemed to be no relief in sight. Arin reveals the challenges he faced as a girl, the humiliation and anger he felt after getting kicked out of his private school, and all the changes, both mental and physical, he experienced once his transition began. Arin also writes about the thrill of meeting and dating a young transgender woman named Katie Hill and the heartache that followed after they broke up.“

  • likeable and easy, but not very political memoir
  • Autobiografisches Buch über eine Geschlechtsangleichung: sympathisch, süffig, aber nicht sehr politisch

Some Assembly Required: The Not-So-Secret Life of a Transgender Teen


36) EDWARD VAN DE VENDEL: Die Tage der Bluegrass-Liebe

  • Dutch YA novel, no English translation
  • 192 pages, Netherlands 1999
  • Germany: Carlsen Verlag, 2008
  • Goodreads: 3.79 of 5

„Ein Feriencamp in den USA. Tycho und Oliver, die dort in ihren Sommerferien arbeiten, verstehen sich von Anfang an besonders gut. Sie können wunderbar miteinander reden und lachen. Doch dann merkt Tycho, dass er mehr für Oliver empfindet als bloße Freundschaft. Nach der ersten Unsicherheit fühlt er sich zusammen mit Oliver stark, fast unbesiegbar. Daran kann auch der Rauswurf aus dem Camp nichts ändern.“

  • two teens fall in love in a US summer camp
  • sympathischer Mainstream

Die Tage der Bluegrass-Liebe


37) FLOORTJE ZWIGTMANN: Ich, Adrian Mayfield

  • Dutch historical YA novel, no English translation
  • 510 pages, Netherlands 2005
  • Germany: Gerstenberg, 2008
  • Goodreads: 4.27 of 5

„London 1884. Adrian Mayfield ist keine 17 und Lehrjunge bei einem Maßschneider in Soho. Als er eines Tages seine Anstellung verliert, findet er Unterschlupf bei einem Kunstmaler namens Augustus Trops und beginnt, Modell zu sitzen. Beim Modellsitzen bleibt es nicht, zu Adrians allergrößtem Erstaunen: Ja, er liebt Männer! Im London dieser Zeit ein Verbrechen. Durch Trops erhält Adrian Zugang zu den erlesensten Künstlerkreisen Londons, an deren Spitze Oscar Wilde im Café Royal thront. Adrian beginnt Gefallen zu finden an dieser dekadenten Gesellschaft.“

  • historical novel about a witty gay upstart in London
  • nicht meine Ära, nicht mein Stil. aber es hat SEHR gute Kritiken und viele Fans.



38) JULIE ANNE PETERS: Keeping you a Secret

„Being gay doesn’t have to be a secret anymore. With a steady boyfriend, the position of Student Council President, and a chance to go to an Ivy League college, high school life is just fine for Holland Jaeger. But when Cece Goddard comes to school, everything changes. They have undeniable feelings for each other. But how will others react to their developing relationship?“

  • I don’t like Peters because often, she is too slow and too on-the-nose. this resonated with readers, though, and I’ll give it a try.
  • gefällig, etwas langsam: ich bin kein Fan von Julie Anne Peters. das scheint eines ihrer stärkeren Bücher zu sein.

Keeping You a Secret


39) JULIA WATTS: Finding H.F.

„Sixteen-year-old Heavenly Faith (H.F.) discovers she has a crush on a local college professor’s daughter, and embarks on a search for her missing mother.“

  • lightweight but likeable lesbian YA novel
  • recht leicht, aber liebenswert: YA-Novel über eine junge Lesbe

Finding H.F.


40) EMILY M. DANFORTH: The Miseducation of Cameron Post

  • 470 pages, USA 2012
  • Germany: –
  • Goodreads: 3.96 of 5

„When Cameron Post’s parents die suddenly in a car crash, her shocking first thought is relief. Relief they’ll never know that, hours earlier, she had been kissing a girl. Cam is soon forced to move in with her conservative aunt Ruth and her well-intentioned but hopelessly old-fashioned grandmother. Survival in Miles City, Montana, means blending in. Then Coley Taylor moves to town. Beautiful, pickup-driving Coley is a perfect cowgirl with the perfect boyfriend to match. She and Cam forge an unexpected and intense friendship — one that seems to leave room for something more to emerge. But just as that starts to seem like a real possibility, ultrareligious Aunt Ruth takes drastic action to ‘fix’ her niece.“

  • the lesbian YA title I’m most eager to read
  • das lesbische Jugendbuch, in das ich die größten Hoffnungen setze

The Miseducation of Cameron Post



15 books that I did not enjoy and won’t recommend / gelesen und nicht gemocht:

Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You Maurice A Wolf at the Table Between Mom and Jo Are You My Mother?

The Mysteries of Pittsburgh While England Sleeps The Body of Jonah Boyd Back Where He Started Leave Myself Behind

A Separate Peace Spätsommer. Hate: A Romance Skim I Am Not Myself These Days


people love Andreas Steinhöfel’s kitschy, overwrought and emotionally fake „Die Mitte der Welt“/“The Center of the World“ (Germany, 1998). I can’t recommend it at all / keine Empfehlung:

The Center of the World


…and Hubert Fichte is one of my favorite authors – there has not been a book of his that I didn’t like, so far – but I would not classify him as „YA literature“: very, very literary and demanding coming-of-age novels / sperrige, tolle deutsche Klassiker über Identität und Coming-of-Age… aber keine „Young Adult“-Bücher: Hubert Fichte, einer meiner Lieblingsautoren:

Detlev's Imitations The Orphanage

gute Goodreads-Liste mit weiteren deutschen oder ins Deutsche übersetzten Titeln, zum mit-Voten: Link

selfie mai 2015

13 Kommentare

  1. Hallo Stefan,

    vor kurzem bin ich über meine Kinder- und Jugendbücher gestolpert und dabei ist mir eingefallen: In Cornelia Funkes „Die Wilden Hühner“ kommt tatsächlich auch das Thema Homosexualität vor. Ich hatte das gar nicht mehr so in Erinnerung, aber Wilma ist es, die ein „wohlgehütetes Geheimnis“ hat: Sie steht auf Mädchen. Weiter ausgeführt wird das glaube ich nicht mehr. Es ist also nicht ganz klar, ob sie homo- oder bisexuell ist. Hier noch ein Link zu ihrem Steckbrief:

    Liebe Grüße 😉

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