Nonfiction Pride Month Picks

As Pride Month comes to a close, we wanted to highlight nonfiction works from those in the LGBTQ + community. From history books to memoirs, we’re sure that they will not only inspire and educate but also be engaging reads!

Gentleman Jack: The Real Anne Lister
By Anne Choma

Anne Lister was extraordinary. Fearless, charismatic and determined to explore her lesbian sexuality by forging her own path in a society. In 1834, she made history by celebrating and recording the first ever known marriage to another woman. Now the basis for the HBO series Gentleman Jack, this is her remarkable, true story.

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No Ashes in the Fire: Coming of Age Black and Free in America
By Darnell L. Moore

The award-winning writer, Black Lives Matter activist, and advocate shares his journey of a scared, bullied teenager who not only survived, but found his calling. Moore reminds us that liberation is possible if we commit ourselves to fighting for it, and if we dream and create futures where those who survive on society’s edges can thrive.

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Queer Threads: Crafting Identity and Community
By John Chaich and Todd Oldham

This book spotlights an international, intergenerational, intersectional mix of thirty artists who are remixing fiber craft traditions while reconsidering the binaries of art and craft, masculine and feminine, and gay and straight. To further examine how queerness informs their work, the artists are interviewed by makers and thinkers from the worlds of dance, design, fashion, media, music, museums, scholarship, and more―many members of the LGBTQ community themselves, and otherwise passionate allies.

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Becoming Dangerous: Witchy Femmes, Queen Conjurers, and Magical Rebels
By Katie West
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Becoming Nicole: The Transformation of an American Family
By Amy Ellis Nutt
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Karamo: My Story Of Embracing Purpose, Healing, and Hope
By Karamo Brown

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Outsiders: Why Difference Is The Future Of Civil Rights
By Zachary Kramer

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Paris On The Brink
By Mary McAuliffe
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Pride: Fifty Years or Parades and Protests from the Archives of the New York Times By New York Times Company
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Queer Eye: Love Yourself, Love Your Life
By Antoni Porowski, Tan France, Jonathan Van Ness, Bobby Berk, and Karamo Brown

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Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son
By Lori Duron

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Representing the Rainbow In Young Adult Literature: LGBTQ+ Content Since 1969
By Christine Jenkins

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The Tradition
By Jericho Brown

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Time Is The Thing A Body Moves Through: An Essay
By T. Fleischmann
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When We Rise: My Life in the Movement
By Cleve Jones

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Stellar Reads, Part 2: Reviews from Adult Summer Challenge Participants

The 2019 Summer Challenge is heating up! Here’s a look at a few books some of our Adult participants are enjoying.

Rachel D. on The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai:

Excellent book, a real page-turner. I felt connected to art and all its possibilities and to the trauma of the generation of young men lost to AIDS, but in a way that left me hopeful and optimistic. Great read!

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Daryl M. on Tiamat’s Wrath by James S.A. Corey:

Perhaps the best so far of the eight books in the Expanse series, full of excitement, tension, joy, and pathos following the trials and tribulations of the four main characters whom fans of the series have come to know and care about. A space opera for the Twenty-Teens.

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Himani S. on The Friend by Sigrid Nunez:

How can the death of a dear friend completely derail an intelligent, highly intellectual writer? You are about to find out. And despite the moribund topic—there are so many chuckles along the way. The author is so gifted in her delivery that as the reader, I was able to suspend my anger and criticism of the main character and fall in love with her and share in her pain and grief.

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Julia D. on Daisy Jones & the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid:

This book is gripping. I started it in the morning and literally did not put it down until I finished it that night. Pithy, productive, visceral writing. You will think this is a real band.

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Emily A. on Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan:

Fun, breezy summer read with interesting footnotes.

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Join the fun! For a chance to win fabulous prizes in the Adult Summer Challenge, create a free Beanstack account and log each book you finish between June 12 and August 14.

Stellar Reads, Part 1: Reviews from Adult Summer Challenge Participants

Looking for an absorbing summer read? Here are some recommendations from Adult Summer Challenge participants:

Nayantara B. on Between The World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates:

In the form of a letter to his son, Coates questions what it really means to live the American Dream as a black man in America. He explores the history of violence committed against minorities in order to achieve the prosperity we enjoy as a country. And finally he comes to the troubling conclusion, that to be black in America is always to be vulnerable. This book is a must-read—poignant, provocative, and beautifully written.

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Joni D. on A Good Enough Mother by Bev Thomas:

Rather than a page-turner—I found this novel to be a slow and steady reveal. Ruth Hartland is an experienced psychotherapist. She keeps her deep and profound grief private. Her 17-year-old son Tom disappeared, her daughter has moved far away and her husband has left. When a new patient enters who bears a striking resemblance to Tom she is torn between her professional judgment and a primal need that clouds her decision making.

While I often found the pace of events slow, and the writing to be about thought and senses rather than action, the insight into the therapeutic process is written brilliantly. The reader gets an intimate view of psychotherapy and the therapist’s process, revealing what, why and the impact on both the client and the therapist. It’s a fascinating story of the desire and need to help as a mother, as a therapist, and what happens when boundaries are held, and more importantly – when they are not.

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Krista T. on Girl, Stop Apologizing by Rachel Hollis:

This was the book I needed—a reminder that I am my own worst critic and that in order to get to where I want I need goals, an action plan, and belief that I can do this. I took many things away that I can do to improve my life and to not allow other people to hold me back.

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Join the fun! For a chance to win fabulous prizes in the Adult Summer Challenge, create a free Beanstack account and log each book you finish between June 12 and August 14.

Appreciation for Audiobooks

Did you know that June is Audiobook Appreciation Month? With hectic schedules, some struggle to make time to read so it’s great to have the ability to listen to books while running errands, cleaning, or traveling. That flexibility is one of the reasons audiobooks are loved by many!

Here’s what we’re looking forward to listening to next.

Like Jasmine Guillory’s The Wedding Date and Helen Hoang’s The Kiss Quotient? You’ll want to listen to…

Meet Cute
By Helen Hunting

When Kailyn meets Daxton Hughes, former actor and teen crush, she mortifyingly turns into a fangirl. Weirdly enough, their meet cute led to a friendship and then betrayal that she never saw coming.

Now as guardian to his thirteen-year-old sister, Dax needs Kailyn’s help. Soon their friendly meetings turn into flirty dinner dates. Can Kailyn let down her guard again to a guy who has heartbreak written all over him?

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Love The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas and Dear Martin by Nic Stone? Give this a chance….

Ghost Boys
By Jewell Parker Rhodes

When a police officer mistakes Twelve-year-old Jerome’s toy gun as a real threat, he’s shot. As a ghost, he observes the devastation that’s been unleashed on his family and community faces after his killing.

Soon Jerome meets another ghost: Emmett Till, a boy from a very different time but similar circumstances. Jerome also meets Sarah, the daughter of the police officer, who grapples with her father’s actions.

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Like Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl and Samantha Downing’s My Lovely Wife? You’ll want to listen to…

The Wife
By Alafair Burke

When a college intern makes an accusation against Jason, and another woman, Kerry Lynch, comes forward with an even more troubling allegation, Angela and Jason’s perfect life begins to unravel. Jason insists he is innocent, and Angela believes him. But when Kerry disappears, Angela is forced to take a closer look—at both the man she married and the women she chose not to believe.

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After the Shot Drops
By Randy Ribay
Bitcoin Billionaires
By Ben Mezrich
Far from the Tree
By Robin Benway
How to Forget
By Kate Mulgrew
Leaving the Witness
By Amber Scorah
The Big Kahuna
By Janet Evanovich
The Truths We Told
By Kamala Harris

Happy First Day of Summer!

Sun’s out, buns out, and by buns, we mean hamburger buns! If you plan on heating up the grill this weekend here are some great cookbooks to inspire you. Whether you are thinking of trying out a new cocktail, need something for plant-based eaters or want to try out a new recipe for ribs, there’s something for every menu.

101 Sangrias and Pitcher Drinks
By Kim Haasarud
101 Things to Do with a BBQ
By Steve Tillett
Art of the Pie
By Kate McDermott
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Baltimore Baseball & Barbecue with Boog Powell
By Rob Kasper and Boog Powell
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Beer: A Cookbook
By Adams Media
Bobby Flay’s Barbecue Addiction
By Bobby Flay
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Forgotten Maryland Cocktails
By Gregory Priebe & Nicole Priebe
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Hot for Food Vegan Comfort Classics
By Lauren Toyota
Never Cook Sober Cookbook
By Stacy Laabs
Project Fire
By Steven Raichlen

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Simply Grilling
By Jennifer Chandler

Smoke and Pickles
By Edward Lee
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The Gardener & the Grill
By Karen Adler

The Seasoned Life
By Ayesha Curry
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VBQ- The Ultimate Vegan Barbecue Cookbook
By Nadine Horn and Jörg Mayer
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Vegetarian Grilling
By Karen Schulz and Maren Jahnke