I want to steal Janet Trumble’s description of herself from her blog:

YA writer, activist, librarian, and straight human with gay tendencies.

Although, I think I really need to work on the activist part. Maybe I can be “YA writer, mom, librarian, and straight human with gay tendencies.”

Anyway, she has a terrific guest post from fifteen-year old book blogger, Brent, in which he describes a school librarian who tells him that books about LBGTQ teens are inappropriate. Such an arrow through my heart as both an author and librarian.

As many librarians have commented on the post, we are, of course, not all like that. But what matters is that some are. I’ve met them. It sucks. And frankly, I’m afraid, some of these librarians are not going to change their deeply-held beliefs that being gay is wrong and/or controversial and so books that portray homosexuality should be kept out of the library.

So what’s a teen to do if his or her library doesn’t stock these books? Ah, the wonder of ILL — interlibrary loan. Not every library does this, and some may charge, but it does open up a whole new world of books, more than could ever fit in one single library. Many libraries even allow you to do this online, so you don’t have to have a face to face conversation with the librarian. If you are having trouble with this, please let me know, and I will help you to navigate the system in your region/state.

Of course, you don’t know what to request if you don’t know what’s out there. Here’s a list of sites that offer reviews of books with LGBTQ characters of both of the types that Brent describes (“books about gay characters, and books whose characters just happen to be gay.”):

Daisy Porter’s Queer YA

Reading Rants: Closet Club

ALA Rainbow Project

GLSEN Booklink

These are usually where I start when looking for books. Any other suggestions?


Taken to Task
Tagged on:         

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *