Category Archives: passing mentions

Better Nate than Ever

Tim Federle, February 2013.  Thirteen-year-old Nate lives in Jankburg, Pennsylvania, with a family he can’t relate to. He’s bullied in school for being pudgy and effeminate; his only solace is best friend Libby, who understands his Broadway dreams and helps … Continue reading

Posted in 2013, fat, gay male, gaytopia, passing mentions, queer adult, queer protagonist, realistic, secondary queer character, Tim Federle | 1 Comment

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe

Benjamin Alire Saenz, 2012. Saenz’s Last Night I Sang to the Monster was the best YA novel I’ve read in a long, long time, so I had perhaps unrealistically high hopes for his latest.  The verdict? It’s no Monster, but … Continue reading

Posted in 2012, Benjamin Alire Saenz, biracial, bisexual, gay male, latina/o, lesbian, passing mentions, problem novel, queer adult, queer protagonist, realistic, romance, secondary queer character, surprise queer character | Leave a comment

The Good Girl’s Guide to Getting Kidnapped

Yxta Maya Murray, 2010. Fifteen-year-old Michelle straddles two worlds – her comfortable foster home with a doctor for her guardian, and her old life as Princess P in a family of gangsters. Now Michelle is applying to private school and … Continue reading

Posted in 2010, black, gay male, high school, latina/o, passing mentions, queer adult, queer parent, realistic, secondary queer character, sports, Yxta Maya Murray | Leave a comment

The Cardturner: A Novel about a King, a Queen, and a Joker

Louis Sachar, 2010. I grew up with Sachar’s Wayside School stories, and while his award-winning Holes wasn’t really my thing, I enjoyed it nonetheless.  The Cardturner is more my speed – a coming-of-age story with a lot of esoteria around … Continue reading

Posted in 2010, fantasy, lesbian, Louis Sachar, passing mentions, problem novel, queer adult, realistic, romance | Leave a comment


Ibi Kaslik, 2004. Narrated in alternate chapters by sisters Giselle and Holly, Kaslik’s book is more than just another anorexia problem novel.  The author explores what it means to be a sister – the affection, the worry, the competition – … Continue reading

Posted in 2004, bisexual, college, high school, Ibi Kaslik, passing mentions, problem novel, queer protagonist, realistic, sports | Leave a comment

He Forgot to Say Goodbye

Benjamin Alire Sáenz, 2008.  Sáenz is my favorite author discovery since the advent of QueerYA. I loved, and raved about, his latest, and this one was almost as good.  In fact, since this one didn’t have much of a plot, … Continue reading

Posted in 2008, Benjamin Alire Saenz, black, gay male, gay-bashing, latina/o, passing mentions, problem novel, realistic, secondary queer character | 1 Comment

Luv Ya Bunches

Lauren Myracle, October 2009. This fun middle-grade novel doesn’t break any new ground, but has a good time with an old story: Fifth-grade queen bee Modessa and her clique enjoy tormenting other girls, who band together to get her back … Continue reading

Posted in 2009, asian american, Lauren Myracle, middle school, passing mentions, problem novel, queer adult, queer parent, realistic | 1 Comment

If I Stay

Gayle Forman, April 2009.  Tells the story of Mia, a high school cellist critically injured in a car accident. Her life is revealed through flashbacks as she decides how hard she wants to fight for her life. There isn’t a … Continue reading

Posted in 2009, european, gay male, Gayle Forman, high school, lesbian, passing mentions, realistic, secondary queer character | 2 Comments

Project Sweet Life

Brent Hartinger, February 2009. Dave, Curtis, and Victor are fifteen years old and, they feel, exempt from having to get summer jobs; unfortunately, their fathers disagree. How can the boys manage to have the awesome summer they’ve planned while working … Continue reading

Posted in 2009, Brent Hartinger, gay male, passing mentions, queer adult, secondary queer character | Leave a comment

After the Moment

Garrett Freymann-Weyr, May 2009. “‘Just leave the kid alone,’ Leigh said. ‘And then we have no problem.’ … “‘Fine,’ Oliver said. ‘You can have your little faggot.’ “And Leigh laughed, all of his thoughts and fears sliding away. “‘That’s the … Continue reading

Posted in 2009, Garrett Freymann-Weyr, gay-bashing, high school, passing mentions | Leave a comment