Harvest Dreams

By Jacqueline Fein-Zachary

Walking through the luscious Napa harvest in the summer of 1982, agricultural student Kate Bauer is inspired to grow grapes, and charismatic business major Sydney Barrett might just be the perfect person to make that dream come true. If only Kate knew what to do with her unexpected attraction to Sydney.

On the threshold of the AIDS pandemic, Kate is appalled by her father’s homophobia toward her closeted uncle, Louie. When Uncle Louie dies, he leaves his potato farm on Long Island to Kate. Soon Kate and Sydney are planting thousands of baby vines, even as the unspoken desire between them grows.

As the vineyard thrives, Sydney caves to family pressure and heads to Paris for a once- in-a-lifetime banking apprenticeship, leaving Kate to struggle with the feelings for Sydney that never wane. Their possibility for a shared harvest grows faint until Sydney returns, and a threat to the vineyard and their dreams forces them to confront their unresolved feelings.

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A Perfect Fifth

By Jaycie Morrison

Music
Virgins/First Love
Coming Out
Friends & Community
Royalty
Financial gap/Class disparity
International Setting
Weddings

Two divides perfectly into four, not five.

Zara Keller is a survivor turned piano phenomenon living for a big dream. When she’s invited to spend the weekend with four long-time friends outside of London, she has little use for luxurious Fullerhill Manor—but Lady Jillian Stansfield might be a different story.

The obligations thrust on Jillian Stansfield as Lady of the Manor center on home and family. Even her best friends expect her to put aside the desire for a meaningful life and carry on her legacy through marriage and children. Will the arrival of a fifth person be enough to tip the balance of their “gang of four” in her favor?

Zara challenges Jillian to pursue grander plans and stirs something new and profound, compelling Jillian to be true to herself and make the hardest decisions of her life. But when tragedy strikes, saving Jillian may cost Zara the goal of a position at the Royal College of Music, and the chance at love. 

Content advisory: This book contains instances of trauma and homophobia.

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Not All A Dream

By Sophia Kell Hagin

Holidays
Ghosts
Dystopian

What do you do when the whole world breaks?

Like when you make it through a plague with the woman you’ve loved for way more than half your septuagenarian life—only to watch her die, leaving you alone. And then, just weeks later, the world around you descends into relentless dark and cold.

Besieged, desolate Hester is too numb to know what to do. And even though she’s lucky to have the means to endure for quite a while, she’s tempted—really tempted—to just give it up. What, after all, is she enduring for?

But giving up will have to wait when she stumbles upon people who introduce her to the first rule of survival: Don’t try to go it alone if you don’t have to.

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The Secrets of Willowra

By Kadyan

Virgins/First Love
Small Town Romances
Children / Families
Coming Out

A family saga of three women, their homestead called Willowra in the Australian outback, and the secrets that link them all.

Gabrielle fled Willowra for Sydney and the freedom to live as an out lesbian, leaving behind all those she loved, especially her cherished grandmother, Victoria. Years later, Gabrielle and her partner, Tess, return to Willowra when Victoria instigates a family gathering to reveal the long-kept secret surrounding her parents, Jason and Maggie, and her own tumultuous past.

As stories and secrets are uncovered, the threads of the past weave together the lives of Jason, Victoria, and Gabrielle and illuminate a new path forward for those who share the legacy of Willowra.

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Love and Lotus Blossoms

By Anne Shade

Bisexual
People of Color

Janesse Crawford spends her teenage and young adult years trying to balance her tomboy, girl-loving side with being the picture-perfect daughter her mother wants. It’s difficult, and Janesse is full of self-doubt, but she manages to find a way to make it work. Then Janesse meets sexy, confident Maya Lawson, who is everything she didn’t realize she wanted, and her world is turned upside down. But Janesse makes a choice and doesn’t look back.

Thirty years later, Janesse is married to a man who loves her, has raised two wonderful children, and has a successful career doing what she loves. But when a chance meeting with Maya brings her past rushing back, the lie Janesse has been living comes crashing in on her. She let Maya get away once, but her second chance at true love could cost her the picture-perfect world she’s spent a lifetime building. It’s not too late for Janesse to blossom into the woman she’s always wished to be. But on her path to self-acceptance, she will risk everything—and possibly everyone—she loves.

 

Starred review from Publishers Weekly: "Shade imbues this optimistic story of lifelong self-discovery with a refreshing amount of emotional complexity, delivering a queer romance that leans into affection as much as drama, and values friendship and familial love as deeply as romantic connection...Shade’s well-drawn Black cast and sophistication in presenting a variety of relationship styles—including open relationships and connections that shift between romance and friendship—creates a rich, affirming, and love-filled setting..."

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Accidental Desperados

By Lee Lynch

MJ Beaudry, an angry, brilliant, abused runaway, is dumped in Rainbow Gap, Florida, and almost immediately discovers an aptitude for crime. The lesbian cop who catches her expects good-hearted lovers Jaudon Vicker and Berry Garland to save the kid. Although Jaudon’s business has suffered a killing blow and she’s frantic to make it right, she was once a besieged gay kid herself and reaches out, only to find herself in cahoots with MJ. 

Berry is left in the dark, her own big dream on hold, and fears losing her love as Jaudon is swallowed by work and guilt. Berry, salt-of-the-earth Gran, besotted-with-MJ Vonnie Lowe, Allison the social justice warrior, and scofflaws Shady and Tad all stand behind Jaudon, but are they enough?

Or will it take this next generation of lesbians—MJ and Vonnie—to lead the way?

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Always Believe

By Aimée

Military

Lieutenant-Colonel Greyson Walsden returns to her hometown of Gloucester after a fulfilling career as an Army doctor. She takes a position as a general practitioner while pursuing ordination as an Anglican priest. Overworked and naturally reserved, she doesn’t have time or patience for socializing, let alone for falling in love.

For Angela Arlingham, life as she knows it is over. God played a cruel trick on her by robbing her of her daughter, Sybil, and Angela refuses to believe in Him any longer. When she meets Greyson Walsden, she’s impressed by the handsome doctor, but struggling with her loss makes falling in love with a priest all but impossible.

As circumstances throw them together again and again, the choice to follow their hearts may be the most difficult one of all.

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Journey to Cash

By Ashley Bartlett

Good girls/Bad girls
Cash Braddock | Book 4
Police
California
Amateur Sleuths

Cash Braddock thought everything was great. Her drug business sold for a nice chunk. She’s opening an art gallery. And she’s finally free of the Sacramento Police Department.

But then the mother she hasn’t seen in twenty-three years knocks on her door, and Laurel Kallen, the ex-girlfriend who broke her heart, rolls into town. Oh, and Laurel has a message: Cash’s former business partner is back and wants to kill them both. Which is a real bummer.

Cash is no stranger to the consequences of her poor decisions, but this time everyone and everything she loves might pay the price.

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Love Changes Everything

By Jaime Maddox

Coming Out
Virgins/First Love
Homecoming

Dr. Samantha Brooks is having a midlife crisis. Her twin sons are about to go off to college, leaving her struggling to find direction. On top of that, she’s being deposed for a lawsuit. And just when it can’t get any worse, she finds out her lawyer is Kirby Fielding, the woman she had a brief but dazzling affair with just before starting medical school. Sam didn’t have the courage to follow her heart back then, or to reach out to Kirby since, but now she’s ready for a change. She only hopes Kirby will give her another chance to prove that love changes everything.

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Quake City

By St John Karp

People of Color
Dystopian
Psychological Thriller

Andre met his best friend Amy on a night like tonight. The way Amy tells it she had to stop him from climbing over the bar at Aunty Bob’s to punch the bartender, though if you ask Andre he’ll say, “What? That never happened. I don’t even know what you’re saying to me right now.” 

Now Amy is worryingly missing in action, and Andre goes to Aunty Bob’s on a quest to find her. No sooner does he walk in with his depressingly heterosexual date than his best hat is spirited away by a lesbian in the throes of breaking up with her girlfriend. She in turn has it stolen from her when she starts a fight with two twinks at the bar. The hat makes its way around Aunty Bob’s from one head to another, giving glimpses into the dozens of stories playing out at the same time, unaware of each other but colliding in catastrophic ways. Can Andre find Amy before this party devolves into a nightmare of broken hearts, malevolent drag queens, and spontaneous human combustion? Or has it always happened this way, every night, at Aunty Bob’s Quake City Club?

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Fitting In

By Amanda Radley

Shortlisted for the Kindle Storyteller Award 2020

Starting a new job is hard. Especially if you’re the boss’s daughter. 

Heather Bailey has been in charge of Silver Arches, the prestigious London shopping centre, for several years. Financial turmoil brings a new investor to secure the future and Heather finds herself playing office politics with the notoriously difficult entrepreneur Leo Flynn. Walking a fine line between standing her ground and being willing to accept change, Heather has her work cut out for her.

When Leo demands that his daughter is found a job at Silver Arches; things become even harder.

Scarlett Flynn has never fit in. Not in the army, not in her father’s firm, not even in her own family. So starting work at Silver Arches won’t be any different, will it? 

A heartwarming exploration of the art of fitting in. 

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London Undone

By Nan Higgins

People of Color
Weddings

London Craft has exactly the life she wants. She’s a successful artist with a hot line of edgy clothing and merchandise she sells from her boutique, Hell in a Handbasket. Along with her incredible chosen family, she’s in a loving relationship with Reggie, her girlfriend of six years.

When Reggie blindsides London with a public marriage proposal, London freezes. She’s never wanted anything traditional, let alone marriage. When Reggie leaves her, she thinks things can’t possibly get worse, until she receives the call that her estranged mother has died. Suddenly, she’s catapulted into contact with the family she hasn’t seen in nearly twenty years.

After her mother’s funeral, London discovers a letter she wrote to her future self as part of a school project when she was ten years old. Face-to-face with her childhood ideals and the drastically different life she’s built, London must find her way to the future—and love—she truly wants.

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Shadows of a Dream

By Nicole Disney

Actors/Artists
Financial gap/Class disparity
Music

When Rainn went rogue from the life her mother wanted for her, she thought she’d have her brother by her side. Instead, his sudden death sent Rainn into a tailspin that has her living in an alley behind a bar. Her life might look like a train wreck, but nothing can distract her from making her rock band the Suicidal Angels a success. Then she meets Jaselle.

A painter with an intrinsic understanding of art, Jaselle’s effortless connection to Rainn’s deepest thoughts and fears is intoxicating, and soon they’re falling into a love more powerful than anything Rainn has ever known. She’s never been happier, until Jaselle’s addiction to meth rages out of control, taking over both their lives.

Rainn’s all-consuming need to salvage their relationship might cost her her friends, her band, her dream, and ultimately, herself.

Previously published as Dissonance in A Minor (2013) 

 

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Somewhere Along the Way

By Kathleen Knowles

California
Big City

In the summer of 1981, Maxine Cooper moves from the Midwest to San Francisco with her gay best friend, Chris, where she hopes to find love and community. But gay life in a big city is much more complicated than either of them ever expected. Life becomes a constant party, and Max slides deep into alcohol and drugs. She and Chris become estranged, and when he contracts AIDS, Max doesn’t know how to bridge the gap between them. 

Shattered by Chris’s death, Max must decide how she is going to live her life. Can she forgive herself for abandoning him, or will her guilt lead her down a path that guarantees destruction?

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Cash and the Sorority Girl

By Ashley Bartlett

Cash Braddock | Book 3
California
Amateur Sleuths

Cash Braddock is doing…okay. She sort of has a girlfriend, her business sucks less, and the cops are only picking her up for interrogations every other weekend. Mediocrity has underrated appeal. It’s fine.

The universities are back in session, which means drugs are in high demand. Cash is becoming more reluctant to sell, while Detective Laurel Kallen is on the trail of someone who’s been drugging and assaulting women at college parties. Cash’s and Laurel’s goals should be aligned, but neither is convinced of the ethics of her job anymore. 

When Laurel’s younger sister is assaulted, okay stops being okay. If Cash wants to help the Kallen sisters, she must decide her own moral bounds.

Third in the Cash Braddock series.

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A Swedish Christmas Fairy Tale

By Amanda Radley

Holidays

Amber Tate is about to lose her job at a London publishing house. And it’s nearly Christmas.

Her boss gives her one last chance. Sadly, it’s the impossible task of obtaining the rights to the popular Lund Collection of fairy tales.

The rights to the fairy tales are held by the author’s granddaughter, Emilia Lund, who lives a reclusive life in Sweden and has steadfastly refused to talk to anyone about the rights for the last several years.

However, in order to convince her one and only friend that she can be sociable, Emilia agrees to invite Amber - under strict conditions - to the cosy setting of wintry Sweden.

They both agree to this vital meeting for their own separate reasons. Except… things never pan out quite as planned, do they?

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Perfect Little Worlds

By Clifford Mae Henderson

Children / Families
California
Reunion Romance
Friends & Community

Lucy can’t hold the secret any longer. Twenty-six years ago, her sister did the unthinkable. 

Portland, Oregon, 1989: Lucy Mustin, living somewhat happily, pumping out wedding cakes for starry-eyed heterosexuals while she, a lesbian, can’t legally marry, is called upon to travel to Santa Cruz to help her autistic sister, Alice, care for their Alzheimer’s-afflicted mother. She knew the call was coming sooner or later. She’d just hoped it would be later. Mother issues. The possibility that resolution might be lost to dementia is a heartbreak she doesn’t feel like feeling. 

Santa Cruz, California, one week later: a trip to the family bakery ups the ante tenfold when the Loma Prieta/World Series Earthquake, racking up a whopping 7.1 on the Richter scale, traps the sisters below ground. There, Alice reminds Lucy of a promise made to their mother many years ago, a promise she plans to keep.

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The Smell of Rain

By Cameron MacElvee

Disability
Multicultural 
Military
Bodyguard/Protection Romances
Age Gap
Women in Uniform

Air Force Lieutenant and military interpreter Chrys Safis lost her leg fighting alongside Kurdish forces in Syria. Once back home in DC, her fiancée leaves, her military career ends, and her faith in humanity evaporates. With prescription drugs and alcohol her only relief from the pain, Chrys is on her way to becoming a statistic.  

That is until the State Department calls and offers her an important assignment—to serve as a diplomatic liaison and interpreter for a Turkish national living in exile. Reyha Arslan, a wise and elegant woman with a tragic past, shows Chrys that there’s still beauty to embrace and reason to hope despite the world’s cruelty. With Reyha’s help, Chrys’s broken spirit starts to heal and she learns that the most significant love is often the shortest lived.

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