Fall Book Box: Great LGBTQ Reads & Giveaways for September

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Stay tuned to The Rainbow Times for more information about the LGBTQ books and giveaways.

By: Jimmy Newsum/Special to TRT—

By September, many of us have had our fill of dips in the ocean and in pools.  Perhaps its time to dip into some reading?

The fall season offers some sizzling new books for every appetite.  Whether you have a taste for intrigue, romance, fierceness or drama—or if you’d like to learn how to make yourself a better person in time for the holidays—there’s something out there for you.

We’ve pulled together a list of titles that definitely deserve a spot in your weekend tote.

FIERCELY YOU

Be Fabulous and Confident by Thinking Like a Drag Queen

By Jackie Huba, with Shelly Stewart Kronbergs

(Berrett-Koehler Publishing Original)

Jackie Huba teaches readers how to apply the lessons of drag queens into their everyday lives. The truth is, too many of us are controlled by our bosses, significant others, friends and parents. We succumb to perceptions that we aren’t smart enough or capable enough and we fail to live up to our true potential. Huba unlocks the Keys to Fierce, showing readers how they, too, can become supremely self-assured and utterly fearless by simple acts drag queens do such as dressing for power, striking a commanding pose, ignoring naysayers and taking risks. She weaves together critical research, compelling examples, lively storytelling and draws on interviews with the world’s top drag performers, many of whom have competed on RuPaul’s Drag Race. Huba even illustrates her point by becoming a drag queen herself! It’s a compelling read that may lead you to your own transformation. No wigs or stilettos required.

SHORTS

Stories From Beneath the Rainbow

By Hans Hirschi

This latest collection from Hans M Hirschi is a tapestry of the LGBT experience, featuring stories that span the wide spectrum of personalities that together, make up the fabric of the LGBTQ community.  Each story carries a unique message.  From “The Kiss”, which recounts a Somali refugee who experiences his first same-sex kiss to “The Loner”, a reflection of how the gay community looks at middle aged men (not a pretty picture); every story manages to look at queer life from a different angle and perspective.  Alex, a story about a trans doctor who rescues the life of an adolescent, aims to encourage readers to remove gender labels.   “The Slasher”, involving a gay club with multiple murders and the mention of ISIS, bears an eerie similarity to the Orlando shooting.  There are stories of a dried up spinster, a Navajo dyke, a completely unfiltered twink, and more; all meant to show the humanity of the LGBTQ community and how queer people struggle with self-esteem, fall in love, help others and fight to survive—just like everyone else.

MOMMIE SMEAREST

See Joan Crawford In Bitch Selfie Ain’t Make You No Movie Star

By L. LeSueur

When Joan Crawford is stopped at the gate to Hollywood Heaven and ordered to Hell “for reasons well known to her,” she must return to Earth to both explain her Mommie Dearest sins and perform good works, most notably: rescue true celebrity back from today’s reality starlets and civilian selfies.  In this riveting posthumous fake autobiography, Joan, writing as L. LeSueur, reinvents herself as the rap artist mo.m.m.i.e.D. and from a secret base at a Florida trailer park, launches raucous battles against the likes of Kim Kardashian and Martha Stewart. In between her squabbles, Joan offers hilarious flashbacks from her own rich Hollywood life, including a never-revealed audition for TV’s The Brady Bunch. In the end, multiple story lines converge into an affirming crescendo of activity that includes criminal indictments, a high-profile gay society wedding, and the final verdict on Joan’s entry into Hollywood Heaven. It all serves as a reminder of the ‘realness’ of fame, especially in today’s celebrity-obsessed culture where anyone with a smartphone can be a star.

WHY DRAG?

By Magnus Hastings

(Chronicle Books)

In drag culture—where pushing boundaries is the exception rather than the rule—there will always be a need to stand up for grit. Inside the pages of Magnus Hasting’s vibrant new coffee-table book, pageant queens strut in full regalia while waiting for a bus, Bianca Del Rio digs into a Barbie doll with pins and needles, and Adore Delano gives great face in front of a McDonald’s while rocking a Budweiser one-piece. Hastings’ spent two years travelling the country to shoot the queens and learn why they do drag. The book offers their answers in the form of short stories that are marked by their humor and, oftentimes, sincerity. And then, of course, there are the gorgeous photos.

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