The 15 Best LGBT Summer Reads Include Anne Rice, Kevin Sessums

The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan (Crown)

 At its heart, this lovely, strange, lyrical novel, which draws on the folklore of Scotland's islands, is about two women trying to find their place in the world. But in this magical realm where the world is covered in water and humans are divided into two groups, the landlockers (who live on the tiny bit of terra firma left) and the damplings (those who live on ships that wander the oceans), what’s most refreshing is Logan’s underlying message that the world does not need to be binary, whether that’s gay or straight or land and sea.

The Daylight Marriage by Heidi Pitlor (Algonquin Books)
In this captivating and emotionally stirring new mystery that, dare I say, may be even better than Gone Girl, an unhappy wife, Hannah, goes missing on the way to work one day. Her climate scientist husband, Lovell, unravels chapter by chapter after her disappearance as police find the bones of a dead woman. Hannah and Lovell’s marriage has already disintegrated and their parenting is terrible because of it, but their teenage daughter finds role models of a marriage done right in their next-door neighbors, a gay couple. A riveting psychological thriller that lets you work out your darkest fears with a gay twist? Yes, please!

Becoming Westerly by Jamie Brisick (Outpost19)
Almost any athlete who comes out as trans right now will be compared to Bruce Jenner, but the story of surf champion Peter Drouyn’s odyssey from teenage Australian hopeful to 1960s surf champion to embittered has-been struggling to rise again as the glamorous, 64-year-old Westerly Windina is a story that deserves equal attention. As a surfer, Westerly pioneered an aggressive style called “power surfing,” introduced the man-on-man competition format, won the Australian National Titles, and brought surfing to the People’s Republic of China. But at the heart of that hypermasculinity lay an unhappy athlete who never felt properly credited. In the hands of journalist (and former pro surfer) Jamie Brisick, this biography is more than a trans coming-out narrative; it’s a story of a journalist chasing a legend and a woman trying to become the vision she’s had of her perfect self, raw and vulnerable but also wildly self-empowered after her 2012 gender affirmation surgery in Bangkok. (And if you’re too busy to read: Brisick’s U.S.-based documentary on Westerly, produced by House of Cards’ Beau Willimon, is scheduled for release this fall.)

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