Top Ten Tuesday is a feature from The Broke and the Bookish and this week we are making a list of the kinds of books we would like to see published. Like a manuscript wish-list, but uh, for readers not agents?
Oh boy, where do I even start?!? Here are just a few gaps that I’ve noticed in my collections, and would love to see filled.
- Picture books with disabled protagonists that aren’t about living with a disability.
- More middle grade fiction with trans boy protagonists, particularly adventure / fantasy / mystery stories.
- Positive portrayals of mental illness, especially in tween/teen fiction. Despite what popular culture might have you believe, many people with mental illness actually manage to live healthy, successful lives!
- Body-positivity! More middle grade fiction with positive body image messages, for both girls and boys.
- Sex-positive informational nonfiction for tweens, especially queer or gender-nonconforming tweens, who struggle to find honest, reliable, sex-positive information.
- YA featuring bisexual and pansexual characters!
- Positive, fluffy, romantic queer fiction for tweens/teens. Being queer isn’t just about coming out or having your heart broken – it can be about sweet romance, too!
- Adventure / fantasy novels featuring disabled protagonists. Guess what, publishers – having different abilities doesn’t make you any less of a bad-ass or hero!
- Romantic YA with disabled protagonists. Once again, despite what popular culture might make you think, people with disabilities flirt, fall in love, date, and have sex!
Jane covered a lot of what I was going to say, so consider her points repeated, and…
- YA stories in all genres (contemporary, sci-fi, fantasy) who don’t fall in love or want sex. More aro, ace, and aro-ace protagonists, please! Especially a-spec characters in relationship: hanging out with their best friends, making new friends, building nonphysical romantic relationships, figuring out queer platonic partnerships, being a great aunt/uncle/reliable adult figure…
- Also, I want this to be a thing for real, and also to be a book. Or several books.
- More POC protagonists and more protagonists who are faithful to and/or in negotiation with their religion without these necessarily being the main drama. Basically, more books like Karuna Riazi’s The Gauntlet, please!
- Protagonists whose physical and mental illnesses interact, because this is a thing! Protagonists with chronic pain, or chronic disabilities, or multiple chronic conditions going about their lives and maybe saving the world.
- Yeah. More intersectionality.
- Also, more food scenes. I am completely down with craving chai and mithai every time I pick up a book if it means reading those food scenes.
- Everything Janet and Jane said.
- Really, that is all.
- But could I also get a book set in Fiji while we’re at it?
- I’d appreciate that a lot.