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The 28th Annual Lambda Literary Awards–or the “Lammys,” as they are affectionately known–kick off another record-breaking year with the announcement of the finalists.

They were chosen from a record 933 submissions (up from 818 last year) from 321 publishers. Submissions came from major mainstream publishers and from independent presses, from both long-established and new LGBT publishers, as well as from emerging publish-on-demand technologies. The winners will be announced at a gala ceremony in New York City.

“The Lambda Literary Awards were founded in 1989 to elevate the profile of LGBT literature,” said Lambda Literary Board President, KG MacGregor. “In so doing, we also elevate the lives of those who find themselves authentically portrayed in our stories. It is with great pride that we come together each year to celebrate the excellent works of inspiring authors who have walked in our shoes.”

Now in their twenty-eighth year, the Lambda Literary Awards celebrate achievement in lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) writing for books published in 2015. The awards ceremony on June 6, 2016, will be held at the NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts.

Nearly 100 literary professionals volunteered countless hours of reading, critical thinking, and invigorating discussion to select the finalists in 25 categories, including the inaugural year for Transgender Poetry.

“Being nominated for a Lammy is an outstanding achievement among such a crowded field of submissions and within an LGBTQ writing community rich with talent,” said Lambda Literary Executive Director, Tony Valenzuela. “I’d also like to thank our judges whose passionate commitment is a tremendous contribution to our literary communities.”

Lesbian Fiction

Apocalypse Baby, Virginie Despentes, The Feminist Press
Blue Talk and Love, Mecca Jamilah Sullivan, Riverdale Avenue Books
The Cherokee Rose, Tiya Miles, John F. Blair
The First Bad Man, Miranda July, Scribner
Jam on the Vine: A Novel, LaShonda Katrice Barnett, Grove Press
Like a Woman, Debra Busman, Dzanc Books
Thérèse and Isabelle, Violette Leduc, The Feminist Press
Under the Udala Trees, Chinelo Okparanta, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Gay Fiction

Breathing Lessons, Andy Sinclair, Véhicule Press
The Early Stories of Truman Capote, Truman Capote, Random House
God in Pink, Hasan Namir, Arsenal Pulp Press
Immaculate Blue, Paul Russell, Cleis Press
JD: A Novel, Mark Merlis, Terrace Books
A Poet of the Invisible World, Michael Golding, Macmillan/Picador
The Rise and Fall of the Yellow House, John Whittier Treat, Big Table Publishing Company
Still Life, Las Vegas, James Sie, St. Martin’s Press

Bisexual Literature

Irrepressible: The Jazz Age Life of Henrietta Bingham, Emily Bingham, Farrar, Straus and Giroux
The Life and Death of Sophie Stark, Anna North, Penguin Random House/Blue Rider Press
The Gap of Time, Jeanette Winterson, Hogarth
Eat My Heart Out, Zoe Pilger, The Feminist Press
My Riastrad, Kevin Hogan, Antrim House

Transgender Fiction

Defiant, Michael Scott Monje, Jr., Autonomous Press
Lost Boi, Sassafras Lowrey, Arsenal Pulp Press
Tiny Pieces of Skull, or a Lesson in Manners, Roz Kaveney, Team Angelica Publishing

LGBT Debut Fiction

The Brink, Austin Bunn, Harper Perennial
Do U., Mark S. Luckie, Amazon/CreateSpace
His Steadfast Love and Other Stories, Paul Brownsey, Lethe Press
Hotel Living, Ioannis Pappos, Harper Perennial
Life is Wonderful, People are Terrific, Meliza Bañales, Ladybox Books
A Love Like Blood, Victor Yates, Hillmont Press
Lovesick, James Driggers, Kensington Publishing
Lum: A Novel, Libby Ware, She Writes Press

LGBT Nonfiction

Considering Hate: Violence, Goodness, and Justice in American Culture and Politics, Kay Whitlock and Michael Bronski, Beacon Press
Fading Scars: My Queer Disability History, Corbett Joan O’Toole, Autonomous Press
Galileo’s Middle Finger: Heretics, Activists, and the Search for Justice in Science, Alice Dreger, Penguin Press
The Gay Revolution: The Story of the Struggle, Lillian Faderman, Simon & Schuster
Modern Families: Stories of Extraordinary Journeys to Kinship, Joshua Gamson, NYU Press
Namibia’s Rainbow Project, Robert Lorway, Indiana University Press
“No One Helped”: Kitty Genovese, New York City, and the Myth of Urban Apathy, Marcia M. Gallo, Cornell University Press
What Color Is Your Hoodie? Essays on Black Gay Identity, Jarrett Neal, Chelsea Station Editions

Transgender Nonfiction

Becoming Nicole: The Transformation of an American Family, Amy Ellis Nutt, Random House
Born on the Edge of Race and Gender: A Voice for Cultural Competency, Willy Wilkinson, Hapa Papa Press
Hiding in Plain Sight, Zane Thimmesch-Gill, Riverdale Avenue Books

Lesbian Poetry

The Devastation, Melissa Buzzeo, Nightboat Books
Everybody’s Bread, Claudia Rodriguez, Korima Press
Experience in the Medium of Destruction, Sara Jane Stoner, Portable Press@Yo-Yo Labs
Girls Like You, Margot Douaihy, Clemson University Press
Life in a Box is a Pretty Life, Dawn Lundy Martin, Nightboat Books
Pelvis with Distance, Jessica Jacobs, White Pine Press
Say/Mirror: Poems and Histories, JP Howard, The Operating System
Shorthand and Electric Language Stars, Stephanie Gray, Portable Press@Yo-Yo Labs

Gay Poetry

Angel Park, Roberto F. Santiago, Lethe Press/Tincture
Boy with Thorn, Rickey Laurentiis, University of Pittsburgh Press
Canto Hondo/Deep Song, Francisco X. Alarcón, University of Arizona Press
Crevasse, Nicholas Wong, Kaya Press
Otter, Ben Ladouceur, Coach House Books
Reconnaissance, Carl Phillips, Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Steep Tea, Jee Leong Koh, Carcanet
Teaching a Man to Unstick His Tail, Ralph Hamilton, Sibling Rivalry Press

Transgender Poetry

Why Dust Shall Never Settle Upon This Soul, Ryka Aoki, Biyuti Publishing
Impersonation, Joy Ladin, The Sheep Meadow Press
succubus in my pocket, kari edwards, EOAGH Books

Lesbian Mystery

The Grave Soul, Ellen Hart, Minotaur Books
Illicit Artifacts, Stevie Mikayne, Bold Strokes Books
Ordinary Mayhem, Victoria Brownworth, Bold Strokes Books
No Good Reason, Cari Hunter, Bold Strokes Books
The Red Files, Lee Winter, Ylva Publishing
Relatively Rainey, R.E. Bradshaw, R.E. Bradshaw Books
Tarnished Gold, Ann Aptaker, Bold Strokes Books
The Tattered Heiress: Volume Two of the Charlotte Olmes Mystery Series, Debra Hyde, Riverdale Avenue Books

Gay Mystery

After the Horses, Jeffrey Round, Dundurn
The Boys from Eighth and Carpenter, Tom Mendicino, Kensington Publishing
Boystown 7: Bloodlines, Marshall Thornton, Kenmore Books
Cheap as Beasts, Jon Wilson, Bold Strokes Books
Introducing Sunfish & Starfish: Tropical Drag Queen Detectives, Wallace Godfrey, Strand Hill Books
Murder and Mayhem, Rhys Ford, Dreamspinner Press
Orient, Christopher Bollen, Harper
The Swede, Robert Karjel, Harper

Lesbian Memoir/Biography

Cooking as Fast as I Can: A Chef’s Story of Family, Food, and Forgiveness, Cat Cora, Scribner
Dirty River, Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, Arsenal Pulp Press
Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl, Carrie Brownstein, Riverhead Books/Penguin Random House
Objects in the Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear, Kate Carroll de Gutes, Ovenbird Books
You’re Not Edith, Allison Gruber, George Braziller

Gay Memoir/Biography

Chasing Lost Time: The Life of C. K. Scott Moncrieff: Soldier, Spy, and Translator, Jean Findlay, Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Exiled for Love: The Journey of an Iranian Queer Activist, Arsham Parsi and Marc Colbourne, Roseway Publishing
A House in St. John’s Wood, Matthew Spender, Farrar, Straus and Giroux
James Merrill: Life and Art, Langdon Hammer, Alfred A. Knopf
My Avant-Garde Education: A Memoir, Bernard Cooper, W.W. Norton & Company
My Body Is Yours, Michael V. Smith, Arsenal Pulp Press
Smash Cut, Brad Gooch, Harper
Until My Heart Stops, Jameson Currier, Chelsea Station Editions

Lesbian Romance

Autumn Spring, Shelley Thrasher, Bold Strokes Books
The Chameleon’s Tale, Andrea Bramhall, Bold Strokes Books
Full Circle, Dillon Watson, Bella Books
Heart of the Game, Rachel Spangler, Bold Strokes Books
Infiltration, Jackie D, Bold Strokes Books
Making A Comeback, Julie Blair, Bold Strokes Books
My Best Friend’s Girl, Blythe H. Warren, Bella Books
The Renegade, Amy Dunne, Bold Strokes Books

Gay Romance

Blueberry Boys, Vanessa North, Riptide Publishing
Brothers, Ralph Josiah Bardsley, Bold Strokes Books
For Real, Alexis Hall, Riptide Publishing
General Misconduct, L.A. Witt, Samhain Publishing
Misfits, Garrett Leigh, Riptide Publishing
Something Like Stories, Volume One, Jay Bell, Jay Bell Books
When Skies Have Fallen, Debbie McGowan, Beaten Track
Yes, Brad Boney, Dreamspinner Press

Lesbian Erotica

Desire Behind Bars: Lesbian Prison Erotica, Salome Wilde and Talon Rihai (editors), Hillside Press
The Muse, Meghan O’Brien, Bold Strokes Books
Sweet & Rough: Queer Kink Erotica, Sinclair Sexsmith, Maverick Press

Gay Erotica

Charming: Modern Gay Fairytales, Jennifer Levine and Rian Darcy, Circlet Press
College Dive Bar, 1 AM, Natty Soltesz, Go Deeper Press
Érotiques Suprèmes, Miodrag Kojadinovic, Choose the Sword Press
Grave Desires, William Holden, Lethe Press
Green Eyes — an erotic novel (sort-of), Michael Ampersant, Lust Spiel Book

LGBT Anthology

Beyond: The Queer Sci-Fi & Fantasy Comic Anthology, Sfé R. Monster (Editor) & Taneka Stotts (Assistant Editor), Beyond Press
Glitter and Grit: Queer Performance from the Heels on Wheels Femme Galaxy, Edited by Damien Luxe, Heather M. Ács, Sabina Ibarrola, Publication Studio
Memories of the Revolution, Holly Hughes, Carmelita Tropicana, and Jill Dolan, Editors, University of Michigan Press
Out of the Closet, Into the Archives: Researching Sexual Histories, Amy L. Stone and Jaime Cantrell, SUNY Press
A Pride of Poppies: Modern GLBTQI fiction of the Great War, Julie Bozza (editor), Manifold Press
Soy Lesbiana y Que! Out Latina Lesbians, Nívea Castro with Geny Cabral, Sinister Wisdom
Speak My Language, and Other Stories: An Anthology of Gay Fiction, Edited by Torsten Højer, Little, Brown Book Group/Robinson
Videogames for Humans: Twine Authors in Conversation, Merritt Kopas, Instar Books

LGBT Children’s/Young Adult

About a Girl: A Novel, Sarah McCarry, St. Martin’s Griffin
Anything Could Happen, Will Walton, Push
Gay and Lesbian History for Kids: The Century-Long Struggle for LGBT Rights, Jerome Pohlen, Chicago Review Press
George, Alex Gino, Scholastic Press
The Marvels, Brian Selznick, Scholastic Press
More Happy Than Not, Adam Silvera, Soho Teen
None of the Above, IW Gregorio, Balzer + Bray/ Harper Collins
Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda, Becky Albertalli, Balzer + Bray/Harper Collins

LGBT Drama

Bright Half Life, Tanya Barfield, Dramatists Play Service
Fun Home, Music by Jeanine Tesori, Book and Lyrics by Lisa Kron, Based on the Graphic Novel by Alison Bechdel, Samuel French
Hir, Taylor Mac, Northwestern University Press
Love Alone, Deborah Salem Smith, Dramatists Play Service
The Mystery of Love and Sex, Bathsheba Doran, Samuel French

LGBT Graphic Novels

Curveball, Jeremy Sorese, Nobrow
Honor Girl, Maggie Thrash, Candlewick Press
The Less Than Epic Adventures of TJ & Amal, EK Weaver, Iron Circus Comics
O Human Star: Volume One, Blue Delliquanti, Self-published
Wuvable Oaf, Ed Luce, Fantagraphics Books

LGBT SF/F/Horror

The Boys on the Mountain, John Inman, DSP Publications
The Caphenon (Chronicles of Alsea – Book #1), Fletcher DeLancey, Ylva Publishing
Down, Ally Blue, Riptide Publishing
The Glittering World, Robert Levy, Gallery Books
The Gracekeepers, Kirsty Logan, Crown Publishers
Minotaur, J.A. Rock, Riptide Publishing
Sacrati, Kate Sherwood, Riptide Publishing
Wonder City Stories, Jude McLaughlin, Createspace

LGBT Studies

Arresting Dress: Cross-Dressing, Law, and Fascination in Nineteenth-Century San Francisco, Clare Sears, Duke University Press
Funk the Erotic: Transaesthetics and Black Sexual Cultures, L.H. Stallings, University of Illinois
Gay Fathers, Their Children, and the Making of Kinship, Aaron Goodfellow, Fordham University Press
Indifference to Difference: On Queer Universalism, Madhavi Menon, University of Minnesota Press
Not Gay: Sex between Straight White Men, Jane Ward, NYU Press
Queer Marxism in Two Chinas, Petrus Liu, Duke University Press
A Taste for Brown Bodies: Gay Modernity and Cosmopolitan Desire, Hiram Pérez, NYU Press
Thinking Sex with the Early Moderns, Valerie Traub, University of Pennsylvania Press

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