If you’re looking for some great LGBTQ+ literature to listen to this year, then you’re in luck! This year has already seen the release of some stunning gay audiobooks, covering a wide variety of themes and genres. From steamy romances to powerful coming-of-age stories and historical fiction that will transport you to a different era altogether, there’s something for everyone. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the top 10 gay audiobooks!
Top 6 Gay Audiobooks
Award-Winning Narrators and Performances
One of the standout features of many of the best gay audiobooks is the incredible narration and performances. A great audiobook can transport you to another world, and the best narrators make that experience even more immersive. From familiar voices like Simon Vance and Joel Leslie, to emerging talents like Iggy Toma and AJ Ferraro, these audiobooks are brought to life by some truly talented performers.
For example, in “The House in the Cerulean Sea” by TJ Klune, narrator Daniel Henning brings to life a cast of quirky and endearing characters, making this heartwarming fantasy novel a delight to listen to. Meanwhile, in “The Guncle” by Steven Rowley, actor and comedian Billy Porter’s narration adds an extra layer of humor and heart to this touching story of grief and family.
Diverse Genres and Themes
Another thing that sets the best gay audiobooks apart is the range of genres and themes on offer. While romance is a popular genre for LGBTQ+ literature, there’s so much more to explore. From spine-tingling thrillers to thought-provoking literary fiction, there’s something for every taste.
For example, in “The Prophets” by Robert Jones Jr., narrator Karen Chilton brings to life the poetic and powerful prose of this historical fiction novel about two enslaved men who find love and solace in each other. Meanwhile, in “The Four Profound Weaves” by R.B. Lemberg, talented narrator Paul Boehmer transports listeners to a richly imagined world of magic and transformation, in a story that explores gender identity and the power of storytelling.
Standout Debut Authors
Several of the top gay audiobooks come from debut authors, who are making a big splash in the literary world. These fresh voices bring new perspectives and styles to LGBTQ+ literature, and are definitely ones to watch.
For example, in “All Boys Aren’t Blue” by George M. Johnson, the author narrates his own memoir with a raw and honest voice, exploring his experiences growing up Black and queer in America. Meanwhile, in “Dead Sea Scrolls” by Daryl Banner, narrator Chris Chambers brings to life the inventive and genre-bending story of a man who discovers a mysterious manuscript that could change the course of history.
Whether you’re looking for a heartwarming romance, a spine-tingling thriller, or a thought-provoking literary novel, the best gay audiobooks have something for everyone. With award-winning narrators, diverse genres and themes, and standout debut authors, these audiobooks are not to be missed.
Romance and Relationships
Love is in the air! Whether you’re single and ready to mingle or already in a committed relationship, there’s always room for more romance in your life. Luckily, 2021 has plenty of options when it comes to heartwarming love stories, steamy encounters, and navigating modern dating. So sit back, relax, and let these audiobooks sweep you off your feet.
Heartwarming Love Stories
Who doesn’t love a good love story? From the classic tale of two people falling in love against all odds to the modern-day rom-com, there’s no shortage of heartwarming stories to choose from. If you’re in the mood for a lighthearted summer read, check out “The Charm Offensive” by Alison Cochrun. This delightful novel follows the story of a reality dating show producer who falls for one of the contestants. Or, if you’re in the mood for something a bit more epic, “The Love Hypothesis” by Ali Hazelwood is a sweeping romance that will leave you breathless.
Steamy and Passionate Encounters
Looking to turn up the heat? These audiobooks are sure to get your heart racing. From erotic novellas to full-length romances, there’s no shortage of steamy encounters to choose from. “The Boyfriend Project” by Farrah Rochon is a sizzling romance about a woman who decides to swear off men, only to find herself falling for her new coworker. And if you’re looking for a queer romance that’s both sexy and sweet, “One Last Stop” by Casey McQuiston is the perfect choice.
Let’s face it, dating in the digital age can be tough. From swiping left and right on dating apps to trying to make a long-distance relationship work, there are plenty of challenges that come with modern dating. Luckily, these audiobooks offer a realistic and nuanced look at what it’s like to navigate the modern dating scene. “Date Me, Bryson Keller” by Kevin van Whye is a charming YA romance about two high school boys who fall in love after a fake date. And “The Beautiful Things Shoppe” by Philip William Stover is a heartwarming romance about a man who inherits a small town shop and falls for the town’s florist.
So whether you’re in the mood for a heartwarming love story, a steamy encounter, or a realistic look at modern dating, these audiobooks have got you covered. Happy listening!
Coming-of-Age and Self-Discovery
Coming-of-age stories have always been popular, and for good reason. They offer a glimpse into the tumultuous and transformative period of adolescence, where young people are trying to figure out who they are and where they fit in the world. For LGBTQ+ teens, this process can be even more challenging, as they navigate a society that often fails to understand or accept them.
Fortunately, there are plenty of great gay audiobooks that explore this theme. These stories cover a wide range of experiences, from the angst and drama of teenage years to the uncertainty of young adulthood. They offer a window into the challenges and triumphs of LGBTQ+ youth, as they come to terms with their identities and learn to embrace who they are.
One standout title in this category is “The Gravity of Us” by Phil Stamper. This novel follows the story of Cal, a high school student who is forced to move to Texas when his father is chosen for a mission to Mars. There, he meets Leon, a fellow teen who is also grappling with his own identity. Together, they navigate the ups and downs of first love, family drama, and the pressures of social media.
Another great coming-of-age story is “We Are Okay” by Nina LaCour. This novel follows the story of Marin, a college freshman who is struggling to come to terms with the loss of her grandfather and the secrets she’s been keeping from her best friend. As she grapples with her grief and tries to rebuild her life, she begins to confront the truth about her own identity and the relationships that matter most to her.
Overcoming Challenges and Embracing Identity
For many LGBTQ+ people, the process of discovering and embracing their identities can be fraught with challenges. From discrimination and harassment to family rejection and internalized shame, there are many obstacles that can make this journey difficult. However, the best gay audiobooks offer hope, inspiration, and a sense of belonging to those who are struggling.
One standout title in this category is “The Sum of Us” by Heather McGhee. This nonfiction book explores the ways in which racism and inequality harm not only people of color, but also white people themselves. Through a series of personal stories and data-driven analysis, McGhee shows how we can build a more equitable and inclusive society for all.
Another great book in this category is “Plain Bad Heroines” by Emily M. Danforth. This novel weaves together two stories: one about a group of girls who died mysteriously at a boarding school in the early 1900s, and another about a group of women making a movie about their story in the present day. As the two narratives intertwine, the characters grapple with questions of identity, desire, and the weight of history.
Inspiring Stories of Personal Growth
Finally, many of the best gay audiobooks offer inspiring stories of personal growth and self-discovery. These stories remind us that we are all capable of growth and change, no matter how difficult our circumstances may be.
One standout title in this category is “Detransition, Baby” by Torrey Peters. This novel follows the story of Reese, a trans woman who is trying to start a family with her ex-girlfriend Ames, who has recently detransitioned. As they navigate the complexities of their relationship and the challenges of parenthood, they learn to confront their own fears and desires, and to find a path forward that feels authentic to them.
Another great book in this category is “Black Boy Out of Time” by Hari Ziyad. This memoir explores Ziyad’s experiences growing up as a queer, Black, and nonbinary person in America. Through a series of personal essays, they reflect on the ways in which their identities have shaped their life, and offer insights into how we can all work to create a more just and equitable world.
Historical Fiction and Period Pieces
Queer Stories Throughout History
Although LGBTQ+ people have long been a part of history, their stories have often been suppressed or ignored. That’s why it’s so exciting to see a growing number of gay audiobooks that explore queer history and offer a glimpse into the lives of LGBTQ+ people throughout the ages. Some standout titles include “The Prophets” by Robert Jones Jr. and “The Deviant’s War” by Eric Cervini.
Groundbreaking Moments in LGBTQ+ Rights
Of course, history is not just about the past – it’s also about the present and the future. Many of the best gay audiobooks of explore contemporary issues surrounding LGBTQ+ rights and activism, offering powerful stories of resistance and hope. Some standout titles include “The Guncle” by Steven Rowley and “Dancing in the Mosque” by Homeira Qaderi.
Timeless Tales of Love and Loss
Finally, no discussion of historical fiction would be complete without mentioning the timeless tales of love and loss that have captivated readers for generations. From epic romances that span continents and lifetimes to poignant stories of grief and redemption, these audiobooks will transport you to a different era and leave you feeling deeply moved. Some standout titles include “The Four Winds” by Kristin Hannah and “The Midnight Library” by Matt Haig.
No matter what your taste in literature, one thing is clear – this year has plenty of amazing gay audiobooks to offer. So why not treat yourself to a few of these must-listen titles and discover the best gay audiobooks for yourself?
What are the best audiobooks with a leading LGBTQ+ character?
Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin, My Policeman by Bethan Roberts, How We Fight For Our Lives by Saeed Jones, and Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey MsQuiston are all great options.
What are the best gay romance audiobooks?
Song of Achilles by Madeleine Miller, Chef’s Kiss by T.J. Alexander, The Love Study by Kris Ripper, and Incandescent by Christina Lee are brilliant options for gay love stories.
James Baldwin, Kate Davies, Ann Bannon, David Sedaris, and Lee Mandelo are all up there with the best LGBTQ+ authors.