Fantasy novels hold a special place in my heart, as they allow me (and other readers) to escape mundane ordinary life. While the mention of fantasy YA brings about specific types of books, I’ve included some more speculative novels as well as some sci-fi novels to this list. Fantasy has so many great LGBT+ novels, if you’re looking to get started or to just discover fantastic new reads, you can’t go wrong with these books.
7 LGBT+ Fantasy/Speculative Novels to Read This Summer
Nature is out of balance in the human world. To solve the crisis, the oracle stones are cast, and Kaede and Taisin, two seventeen-year-old girls, are picked to go on a dangerous and unheard-of journey to Tanlili, the city of the Fairy Queen. Taisin is a sage, thrumming with magic, and Kaede is of the earth, without a speck of the otherworldly. And yet the two girls’ destinies are drawn together during the mission.
Amara is never alone. Not when she’s protecting the cursed princess she unwillingly serves. She can’t be alone, because a boy from another world experiences all that alongside her, looking through her eyes. Nolan longs for a life uninterrupted. Every time he blinks, he’s yanked from his Arizona town into Amara’s mind, a world away… until they communicate for the first time. All Amara and Nolan want is to be free of each other. Now, they’ll have to work together to survive.
The Impostor Queenby
Sixteen-year-old Elli was a small child when the Elders of Kupari chose her to succeed the Valtia, the queen who wields infinitely powerful ice and fire magic. But when the queen dies defending the kingdom from invading warriors, the magic doesn’t enter Elli. It’s nowhere to be found. Elli flees to the outlands, and as she finds her footing in this new world, Elli uncovers devastating new information about the Kupari magic, those who wield it, and the prophecy that foretold her destiny.
Fifteen-year-old Kivali has never fit in. Abandoned as a baby wrapped in a T-shirt with an image of a lizard on the front, Kivali found a home with nonconformist artist Sheila. Is it true what Sheila says, that Kivali was left by a mysterious race of saurians and that she’ll one day save the world? Kivali doesn’t think so. But if it is true, why has Sheila sent her off to CropCamp? But life at CropCamp isn’t all bad. For the first time, she has real friends. But then there are some mysterious disappearances, and weekly doses of kickshaw—a strange, druglike morsel—things get more and more complicated.
As a child, Ava’s adopted sister Miyole watched her mother take to the stars, piloting her own ship from Earth to space making deliveries. Now a teen herself, Miyole is finally living her dream as a research assistant on her very first space voyage. If she plays her cards right, she could even be given permission to conduct her own research and experiments in her own habitat lab on the flight home. But when her ship saves a rover that has been viciously attacked by looters and kidnappers, Miyole embarks on a mission that changes the course of Miyole’s life forever.
The Scorpion Rulesby
Greta is a Duchess and a Crown Princess. She is also a Child of Peace, a hostage held by the de facto ruler of the world, the great Artificial Intelligence, Talis. This is how the game is played: if you want to rule, you must give one of your children as a hostage. Start a war and your hostage dies.
We Are the Antsby
Henry Denton has spent years being periodically abducted by aliens. Then the aliens give him an ultimatum: The world will end in 144 days, and all Henry has to do to stop it is push a big red button. Only he isn’t sure he wants to. After all, life hasn’t been great for Henry. His mom is a struggling waitress. His brother is a jobless dropout. And Henry is still dealing with the grief of his boyfriend’s suicide last year. Wiping the slate clean sounds like a pretty good choice to him…