Looking for some new queer reads? Spend quality time with some of our very favorite queer AAPI voices this AAPI Heritage Month with this starter kit:
Ocean Vuong, Time is a Mother (Home | oceanvuong)
In this deeply intimate second poetry collection, Ocean Vuong searches for life among the aftershocks of his mother’s death, embodying the paradox of sitting within grief while being determined to survive beyond it. Shifting through memory, and in concert with the themes of his novel On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous, Vuong contends with personal loss, the meaning of family, and the cost of being the product of an American war in America. At once vivid, brave, and propulsive, Vuong’s poems circle fragmented lives to find both restoration as well as the epicenter of the break.
Alexander Chee, How to Write an Autobiographical Novel (How to Write an Autobiographical Novel — Alexander Chee)
Named a Best Book of 2018 by New York Magazine, The Washington Post, Publisher’s Weekly, NPR, and Time Magazine, among others, this essay collection from the author of The Queen of the Night explores how we form our identities in life and in art. As a novelist, Alexander Chee has been described as “masterful” by Roxane Gay, and “incendiary” by The New York Times. With How to Write an Autobiographical Novel, his first collection of nonfiction, he’s sure to secure his place as one of the finest essayists of his generation as well.
Hanya Yanagihara, To Paradise (Hanya Yanagihara (prh.com))
Following the award-winning novel, A Little Life, Hanya Yanagihara wrote To Paradise, which details three different versions of the American experience spanning three centuries. The first begins in an alternate version of the late 1800s where New York is part of the Free States, the second occurs at the height of the AIDS epidemic in New York City following a young Hawaiian man living with his much older, wealthier partner, and the last in 2093 centers around a powerful scientist’s granddaughter who is trying to solve the mystery of her husband’s disappearance. The three sections are interwoven with recurring themes and unites the characters despite taking place in entirely different times.
T Kira Madden, Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls (Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls - T Kira Madden)
Acclaimed literary essayist T Kira Madden's raw and redemptive debut memoir is about coming of age and reckoning with desire as a queer, biracial teenager amidst the fierce contradictions of Boca Raton, Florida, a place where she found cult-like privilege, shocking racial disparities, rampant white-collar crime, and powerfully destructive standards of beauty hiding in plain sight.
Ryka Aoki, Seasonal Velocities (Books (yay!) – Ryka Aoki (rykaryka.com))
Seasonal Velocities invites the reader on a fragile and furious journey along the highways and skyways of discovery, retribution, and resolve. Through her poetry, essays, stories, and performances, award-winning writer Ryka Aoki has challenged, informed, and shared with queer audiences across the United States. Seasonal Velocities was honored as a 2013 Lambda Award Finalist.
Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, Care Work (Care Work (brownstargirl.org))
In their new collection of essays, Lambda Literary Award-winning writer and disability justice activist Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha explores the politics and realities of disability justice, a movement that centers the lives and leadership of sick and disabled queer, trans, Black, and brown people, with knowledge and gifts for all. Care Work is a mapping of access as radical love, a celebration of the work that sick and disabled queer/people of color are doing to find each other and to build power and community, and a toolkit for everyone who wants to build radically resilient communities of liberation where no one is left behind. Powerful and passionate, Care Work is a crucial and necessary call to arms.