LGBT History Month – Our Literature Picks!

Book with Glasses

We’ve given you some films and tv shows, so now it’s time for the books!  Here are literary picks for LGBT+ History Month.

The Colour Purple – Alice Walker (1982)

A book written entirely in the form of letters follows the story of 14-year-old Celie, an African American girl living in rural Georgia in the 1930s. It follows her through the trials and tribulations of her life discovering who she is, and how to love on your own terms. A masterpiece from Walker which earned her the 1983 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.

Zami: A New Spelling of My Name – Audre Lorde (1982)

Lorde’s only novel explores her childhood in New York City, and navigating life as a black lesbian in 1950s America. This book is an unapologetic ode to intersectionality and combines Lorde’s biography with myth and history. A poet and author whose work which will transcend centuries to come.

Autobiography of Red – Anne Carson (1998)

A novel which is told through the medium of poetry and based loosely on the Greek myth of Geryon and Hercules. It retells the traditional story which sees Geryon killed by Hercules into a romantic story of the pair’s journey to the end of the world. A blend of poetry and novel which can win over even those who loathe poetry.

A Little Life – Hanya Yanagihara (2015)

Despite the length of this book many commend the characters for leaving you wanting more. Delving into relationships between men, whether that be within a family, platonically or romantically it doesn’t hold back. It follows the lives of four friends in New York City from their college days to their middle age. Not light reading but sheds light on important often taboo topics.

Giovanni’s Room – James Baldwin (1956)

This book focuses on the life events of an American man living in Paris, David. It explores the complexities of masculinity and sexuality, especially for gay and bisexual men. The novel highlights the importance of queer spaces for LGBT+ individuals and is often credited as an accurate representation of how these bars helped navigate private and public spheres in the 1950s.

In at the Deep End – Kate Davies (2019)

A debut novel which is equally as funny as it is risqué. The book follows main character Julia on a journey of rediscovery to recapture what love means. It is considered a fresh take on a lesbian coming-of-age story which explores Julia’s sexual awakening against the backdrop of London.

Tomorrow Will Be Different: Love, Loss, and the Fight for Trans Equality’ – Sarah McBride (2018)

This memoir by McBride has reached the bookshelf of both Vice President Harris and President Biden. As the first transgender state senator in United States history McBride’s tells her empowering story in this memoir. The memoir tells both her story and lays out the cultural and historical milestones in American history in the fight for equality and freedom.

Call Me by Your Name – André Aciman (2007)

This book set in the picturesque Italian town Bordighera and follows the budding relationship between Oliver and Elio. It tackles issues of bisexuality, coming out and the challenges of relationships. A novel which portrays the unapologetic desire for the love of another defies traditional gay literature stereotypes which is perhaps what proved to be the basis for its popularity.

Paul Takes The Form of a Mortal Girl – Andrea Lawlor (2017)

This book is a story not just of finding love, learning how to love yourself but also finding love and acceptance in the LGBT+ community. The book follows Paul/Polly on a journey from college in Iowa City to San Francisco in the 1990s. An evocative comedy explores what it means to be non-binary without hesitating to highlight the struggles by including incidents of homophobia and racism.

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe – Benjamin Alire Sáenz (2012)

A coming-of-age novel which shows the slow progression of a friendship into a budding romance between main characters Aristotle and Dante. This book, set in Texas, follows these characters on a journey of self-discovery through struggles with racial and ethnic identity, LGBT sexuality, and family relationships.

The Line of Beauty – Alan Hollinghurst (2004)

This novel spans the early and late 1980s and covers the emergence of HIV/AIDS and the relationship between politics and homosexuality. It does this by exploring the ambivalent acceptance within the 1980s Conservative Party and mainstream society. The main character Nick lives with the Fedden family who shape his experience of coming out as a gay man and his political choices.

Orlando – Virginia Woolf (1928)

Often noted as a pioneering text for the LGBT+ community this book is heavily inspired by the life and family history of aristocrat Vita Sackville-West and is dubbed as a love letter to her from Woolf. The book follows poet, Orlando, who changes sex from man to woman and lives for centuries, meeting key literary figures during the transition Orlando experiences.

Under the Udala Trees – Chinelo Okparanta (2015)

This book is set in the 1960s and follows Ijeoma, a girl growing up during the Nigerian civil war coming to terms with her own sexuality and the conflict this presents in society. This coming-of-age story explores the journey Ijeoma has to accept herself and her sexual orientation in a society still hostile to the LGBT+ community.

The Secret Diaries of Miss Anne Lister – edited by Helena Whitbread

This book is the edited diary of Anne Lister and is part of a series created by Whitbread who decoded her diaries. Lister defied the expectations of women of the period as an independent, bold landowner and a lesbian. She kept extensive diaries of her life and loves, two of her most significant relationships are the main source of the plot to this novel.

America is not the Heart – Elaine Castillo (2018)

This book follows Hero, a Filipino-American woman who develops a romantic relationship with Rosalyn. There are sections which cover her life in the Philippines and in America and how the barrier of class, language and trauma impact her everyday life. It tells the story of not only Hero and own self-discovery but of the two countries too.


Written by student journalist Emily
Got your own story to tell?  Get in contact here
Read more news here


BAME Rep Newsletter

Young people at the 2021 climate march

Why Young People’s voices are vital to tackle Climate Change

Movies - Man and woman with dog eating popcorn on sofa

Black History Month: 10 movies to add to your watchlist

Black History Month - light box spelling out BHM

Black History Month events happening in Glasgow

Mental Health and Wellbeing - the word hope spelt out using wooden letters and a green bow.

How to sustain good Mental Health and Wellbeing

Female Black Writers - girl reading book in nature.

10 Female Black Writers you should be reading

TEDx UniversityofStrathclyde

How To Mentally Prepare for University

Let’s Prepare for University!

Freshers 2021: Nightlife in Glasgow – Venues

Freshers 2021: Nightlife in Glasgow – Clubs

Freshers 2021: Nightlife in Glasgow – Bars

Freshers 2021: Restaurants We Recommend!

Freshers 2021: Coffee Shops

Freshers 2021: Lunch choices

Munro Bagging 101

Welcome Team Experience

Things To Occupy You This Summer

Author Dorothea

Using Goodmoves For Your Job Hunt

Private Accommodation

Living in Halls – Top Tips to find Private Accommodation

a man on the beach with arms outstretched celebrating the end of exams

Exams Are Done: Time to Relax!

BAME Rep – Nathan Update

Glasgow squinty bridge

Let’s Explore Glasgow!

a girl with her foot on the radio listening to tunes

Union Tunes – What we are listening to!

A koala leaning up against a tree as a visual metaphor for burnout

Burnout – How Life Under Lockdown Has Gotten to Us All

Spotlight on Strath Societies – Musical Theatre Society

Zero Waste Market Sustainable Shops in Glasgow

Sustainable Shops in Glasgow

The Record Factory Beer Garden with tables

Beer Gardens in Glasgow

Student looking stressed out over the Exams

Ways to Relax During the Exams

Star Awards Logo

STAR Awards 2021

Students in the basket of a hot air balloon getting ready to take off

Spotlight on Strath Societies – Hot Air Balloon Society

Woman holding a book over her eyes stressed about the upcoming exam

Study Tips for Exam Season

The Strath Debate team in the Chamber. A man has his hand on forehead in deep thought

Strathclyde Debate Society Interview


Easter Traditions around the World

Bedroom Nido Student Accomodation

Nido Student Accommodation

Former Sports President Maddy Watson and a representative from Bluevale Boxing Club

Bluevale Community Club – A Feel Good Sports Story

TEDxUniversityofStrathclyde Interview

LGBT Flags

Stonewall – A Riot for Rights


Ableism during COVID-19

Book with Glasses

LGBT History Month – Our Literature Picks!

native strath

Introducing Native at Strath Union….Our Brand-New Events Host

Watching TV

LGBT+ History Month – Our Top Movies and TV Shows

LGBT Pride Flag

LGBT+ History Month – Where It Began

Valentine’s Day from Home

A girl sitting cross legged on a sofa reading a book. There is a library in the background

Lockdown Reads – Top 3 books to help escape lockdown

Reach Out – A new student mental health programme

Strath Elections! Why should you get involved?

Haggis cropped

Burns Night at Home, a Strath Life guide!

The Organ Droner Concept

A Conversation with Strath AIS

Exam Top Tips

Tis’ the season! Exam season…

Strathclyde Women in Banking and Finance

Global Entrepreneurship Week – Women in Banking and Finance

Mane Man

The Digital Age and The Creation Of Mane Man Blog

Jennys Story

Covid Tales: ‘Jenny’s’ Story

Stammering Awareness Day with Strath Speechies!

Endsleigh – The Student Insurance to Protect your belongings

Phonics Logo

We chat with Strath IEEE about their new series of events!

RHA - Top Tech Tips

Studying From Home Top Tech Tips

Covid Relief Society | Meeting the Union’s latest society!

Buchanan Galleries

Buchanan Galleries Student Fortnight

Be a go-getter: Get that dream job using LinkedIn

What about us international students

What About Us?

Now is the Time to Start Writing Poetry

How to be Safe on Zoom

How to Use Zoom Safely

Strathclyde Film Society is utilising Netflix Parties

food sharing

Glasgow Restaurants and Strath Foodsharing help those in need

Mural Trail

Discover Glasgow’s Mural Trail

Clubs and Societies in Lockdown

30 Clubs & Socs To Try In Lockdown


Getting Ready, Ramadan is Approaching!

Keeping Fit at Home

Keeping Fit at Home

Self-Isolation Mental Wellbeing