BuzzFeed's Saeed Jones Picks 6 Books for LGBT Readers
By Daniel Reynolds
Boy With Thorn by Rickey Laurentiis
Rickey Laurentiis’s poetry collection won the 2014 Cave Canem Poetry Prize for its “ardent grace” and its “fearless sensitivity,” according to judge Terrance Hayes, who called it “an extraordinary, and ultimately, irreducible debut.” The book’s retelling of American history is filled with sexuality as well as the pain inflicted by racism throughout time, showing readers how some ghosts continue to haunt this country. Find out more here.
What Belongs to You by Garth Greenwell
In What Belongs to You, a teacher pays a hustler for sex, and thus begins a relationship that becomes violent over time. Written by Garth Greenwell, the novel explores loneliness, desire between men, and what it means to be a queer man in America. Find out more here.
A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara
Hanya Yanagihara's A Little Life, a National Book Award finalist, explores the lives of four friends who move to New York City after college graduation. The actor, painter, architect, and litigator embark on their chosen professions, and over decades, their relationships grow and also become affected by success and jealousy. Learn more here.
A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James
Marlon James recently won the 2015 Man Booker Prize for A Brief History of Seven Killings. The acclaimed novel spans nations and decades. But the focus spins around the assassination attempt on Bob Marley in the 1970s and the violent characters and environs within Kingston, Jamaica. Find out more here.
Widow Basquiat by Jennifer Clement
Many creative works have been made about Jean-Michel Basquiat, the acclaimed 20th-century artist. One of the best is Widow Basquiat, a memoir that examines the artist’s relationship with his muse and lover Suzanne Mallouk. This love steers clear of romanticizing the realities of the East Village in the 1980s as well as Basquiat himself, who died of a heroin overdose in his 20s. Find out more here.
Reconnaissance by Carl Phillips
One of the country's most talented poets and sentence-weavers, Carl Phillips, has released his latest book, Reconnaissance. Don't miss this "characteristically bold and beautiful collection from this brilliant lyricist," as Booklist calls it. Learn more here.