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Manga to Read for Pride Month!

By Alex Arata

There are more queer manga stories coming out than ever before, and what better time to dive in than Pride Month? If you’re not sure where to begin, keep scrolling! We’ve got something for you.


X-Gender book coverX-Gender by Asuka Miyazaki
X-Gender is the autobiographical account of author Asuka Miyazaki’s journey through discovering their gender and sexuality at thirty-three. There are so many underrepresented topics discussed in this book, especially in the world of manga, and Miyazaki handles them with grace. For instance, there’s a “incomplete list of transgender terms” on page 54, which is both thoughtful and reminds us that even the author has learning to do! Bonus: Volume 2 comes out on June 13th!

We recommend this book for ages 18 and up, as it also handles topics like sex in detail.


Just Friends book coverJust Friends by Ana Oncina
This bittersweet coming-of-age tale shows us the lead couple’s early bonding during teen summer camp, and their fateful reconnecting later in their thirties. You may think as adults things are less complicated than they were, but the passage of time seems to only have tangled things up further. A bit melancholy, but oh, so real, this is a great read for anyone looking for a more down-to-earth story. Bonus: the Summer vibes are perfect for June.


Boys Run the Riot book coverBoys Run the Riot by Keito Gaku
This is one of the most highly acclaimed books in the lot, for good reason! Our first fictional work in the lineup, Boys Run the Riot follows closeted transgender teen Ryo, who falls into the world of street fashion, eventually using his love for the subculture as an escape from everyday life. This book is sweet and heartfelt, while not shying away from some of the heavier parts of being a trans teenager in Japan. It may be a bit triggering for some people, as Ryo is closeted and is therefore misgendered frequently. But if you’re up for it, this is one of the most rewarding series out there!


At 30 I Realized I Had No Gender book coverAt 30 I Realized I Had No Gender by Shou Arai
If you thought that X-Gender following a nonbinary person in their thirties was refreshing (queer people who aren’t in their twenties?! Gasp!) then you’ll love this brand new release as well, which is another autobiographical work from a nonbinary author, this time in their fifties (yes, the title implies they’re thirty, but it’s about the author’s subsequent two decades of self-discovery!). The book reminds us of this, as one of topics Arai touches on (with lighthearted grace, might we add) is the experience of aging within a society that still holds on so tightly to a strict gender binary. A masterclass in handling tough subjects with a comedic touch, we think this is a great manga read for Pride month!


Run Away With Me Girl book coverRun Away With Me Girl by Battan
This Yuri series is so sweet and romantic, and is a welcome change from the–frankly gross–plethora of hypersexual lesbian manga out there that are clearly made for men. Unlike those series, this story focuses on both women’s complex feelings, compulsory heterosexuality, and the challenges of coming out. Bonus, volumes 2 and 3 are already out!


I Hear the Sunspot book coverI Hear the Sunspot by Yuki Fumino
This manga follows the (slow burn) blossoming romance between two teen boys, one of which is hard-of-hearing, and has struggled fitting in as a result. Don’t dive into this book if you’re looking for a charged, fast-paced BL. I Hear the Sunspot relies more on slow pacing and careful relationship building that focuses more on fleshing out our characters than depicting flashy romance scenes. It’s sweet and rewarding, and a great choice for a Pride Month read!


My Wandering Warrior Existence book coverMy Wandering Warrior Existence by Nagata Kabi
The latest installment in Nagata Kabi’s autobiographical series of accounts of fighting against isolation and addiction as related to her lesbianism, My Wandering Warrior Existence sees our author tackling challenges both new and old: finding love, dating apps, navigating sex and relationships, and more. If you think these topics sound heavy, fear not: Kabi’s typical comedic style shines through as always, giving the book the same lightness her other work is known for. If you haven’t read any of Kabi’s books, you can start here, but we also recommend the first installment, My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness.

Happy Pride & happy reading everyone!