Thank you for your concerns and feedback regarding the list. We want to apologize and clarify a few pieces of information.
We messed up big time in not including a section for romantic orientations and a recommend aromantic list. It was of course not our intention to cause harm, but our intent is not what matters. We are working with aromantic people to rectify this issue, and to make the best possible aromantic list.
Additionally, we understand that initially coming to the website was confusing and hurtful to many, and we are deeply sorry. Many of us have felt the pain of clicking on a list of recommended LGBTQIA+ YA books only to find harmful, damaging titles listed. We never wanted to inflict that kind of pain on anyone else. We really messed up by not making the point of the list clear, and we are really sorry. We added a clarification to the landing page today.
Just to be clear about the point of this list, it is not a list of book recommendations. It is meant to be a comprehensive list of all LGBTQIA+ YA titles published by presses since 2000. While there are many recommendation lists out there, there are no comprehensive lists. A comprehensive list is an essential resource for anyone researching LGBTQIA+ YA, analyzing trends, and comparing representation in various books.
We knew that some people would come to this site looking for recommendations. Because of this, we decided to make the “Best Of” lists. These lists feature what our contributors felt were the best representations of specific identities.
We also hear you loud and clear that some of these titles have such a high likelihood of causing damage that they cannot be permitted to stand alone. To that end, we have begun to mark them with this: “Note: this book contains problematic representation.” In the future, we plan to begin linking critical reviews (with permission from the reviewers) to the problematic books.
There are also few major flaws in our tagging system. For example, if you’re looking for a book with Asian trans guys, books that have the tags “Asian” and “trans guy” will show up, but there is no way to demarcate if there is an Asian trans guy in the book. We are looking into ways to fix this as soon as possible. For now, per your feedback, we will be untagging all secondary characters that are not featured prominently in the story. This will help streamline the search, and help deliver the best results possible.
Please check out our updates and changes page to see what we are working on and how we have progressed.
Thank you all so much for your incredibly helpful feedback on the site so far. We are excited to continue working on it, incorporating your feedback, and making it an awesome resource!