By Maisy Twaddle, Anna Robinson, Annie Ku and Steph Carroll
Pageboy by Elliot Page
6 June 2023, Transworld Publishers Ltd
Meditations on gender, mental health and fame shine through in this memoir from beloved actor and trans activist Elliot Page.
Following the success of his lead role in Juno, Elliot Page found himself trapped by the thing that had been his escape. Whilst acting used to be his solace, the spotlight that came with it made it harder for him to navigate his discovery of himself as a queer, trans person. Forced to play the dazzling starlet both on and off screen, Page struggled with the pressure to perform. Whilst he found the world trying to force him into a binary role, he found himself staying silent until enough was enough and he came out as a trans man.
Pageboy is many things. Full of behind-the-scenes details of Hollywood and intimations on sex, love and trauma, Pageboy tells the story of a life pushed to the brink. At its core, however, it is an ode to being human and untangling oneself from the expectations of others to become who we truly are with defiance and joy.
Girlcrush by Florence Given
22 June 2023, Octopus Publishing Group
Following her celebrated book, Women Don’t Owe You Pretty, Florence Given’s debut novel explores modern womanhood and the chaos that is social media fame.
The Instagram generation interact with thousands of influencers every day. But who is really behind the screen? And who can you trust when you become a commodity for ads and sponsorships?
In her debut novel, now available in paperback, Given presents us with Eartha, an openly bisexual woman navigating womanhood in a seductive modern-day exploration of life online. Eartha is becoming a viral sensation on social media app Wonderland where people project their dream selves online.
As her fame increases, the gap between her online persona and offline reality widens until something dark happens that leads her into total self-destruction. Eartha is left with a choice to make: which version of herself should she leave behind?
The novel is a dark and dystopian exploration of topics that young women often struggle with, such as sexual politics, online portrayals and the power of the media.
Of Knight and Books and Falling in Love by Rita A. Rubin
29 June 2023, Wednesday Books
Jayce is an unwilling servant of the Dark Lord, and he can’t even remember a life before this. When he meets Alexius the Knight, a path to freedom finally opens up. Although the two are technically enemies, the chance to escape servitude is too rare for Jayce to refuse. After the war ends, they journey together to Alexius’s hometown. Despite being on different sides of the war, Jayce and Alexius grow closer as time goes by and Jayce explores what life within society means for him.
This book will be perfect for fans of cosy fantasy and slice-of-life, à la Legends & Lattes, with a sweet slow-burn romance set in a magical queernormative world. The story is full of healing and acceptance, as the characters are recovering from the trauma of war with each other’s support and help. Comforting, witty and a fast read, Of Knights and Books and Falling in Love will be a joyous and easy read during Pride month.
A Place for Us by Brandon J. Wolf
1 July 2023, Little A (Amazon Publishing)
Nationally recognised gun safety and LGBTQIA+ civil rights advocate Brandon J. Wolf brings us a powerful coming of age memoir that radiates resilience and strength and invites us into a community of love and inclusivity.
Wolf brings us on his journey of growing up Black and queer, losing his mother and finding a home in a community that is a safe place for so many. On 12 June 2016, his and so many others’ lives were shaken after a mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub, a shooting that resulted in the sudden death of two of his best friends and forty-seven others. This tragedy pushed Wolf to take action, in a time of fear and grief. Wolf set up The Dru Project, partnered with March for Our Lives, where he now serves as Press Secretary for Equality Florida.
Wolf’s memoir shows us how we can find home and strength in loving communities. When he moved to Orlando, he found where he belonged; he found his chosen family. And when his family was targeted, he found the power of purpose to take action to honour the victims. This is Brandon J. Wolf’s story… so far.