Trans and Nonbinary Authors Bringing Representation for Transgenders and Genderqueer Through YA Books

Balzer + Bray (May 5, 2020)

Trans and nonbinary authors are bringing representation to the needs of the LGBT+ community.

LGBT+ characters are becoming popular in all forms of media. Gay and bisexual people are getting lead roles in shows, movies, and books. However, the whole community isn’t represented, and members of it have taken the matter into their own hands.

If you want to get lost within the pages, identify with a character, or understand the journey that many members of the LGBT+ community go through, you need to check out the following authors.

Tobly McSmith

Born in Texas, McSmith is known for his musical parodies. He is a proud transgender person.

HarperTeen (May 26, 2020)


His book Stay Gold is a coming of age teen love. The main character, Pony, is a transgender boy, and a cisgender girl, Georgia, has a huge crush on him, even though Pony planned to spend his senior year drawing as little attention as possible to himself.

Akwaeke Emezi

Emezi is a writer and video artist known for her debut novel Freshwater. Emezi uses they/them pronouns. They started writing short stories at the age of five.

Make Me a World (September 10, 2019)

Their book Pet is about a transgender teenager named Jam. She is living in a world where adults don’t acknowledge the existence of monsters. Pet, a monster hunter that emerged from one of Jam’s mother paintings, changes Jam’s life.

Rachel Gold

Gold is an award-winning marketing strategist and a print reporter for the LGBT+ community. She self describes herself as a geek with a passion. Her book, Being Emilyis written from a transgender girl’s point of view.

Bella Books (June 15, 2018)

Being Emily follows the story of Emily as she struggles with who she is and how she was born.

April Daniels

Not to be confused with the actress, Daniels is a transgender woman. Her two-book series, Dreadnought, represents genderqueers and transgender people. Her books also discuss mental health and morals.

Diversion Books (January 24, 2017)

The first book, Dreadnought, follows the story of Danny Tozer. Tozer inherited powers from Dreadnought. The powers changed her physically, giving her the body she had always wanted since she realized she was transgender. In the second book, Sovereign, a new superhero, is introduced. Kinetiq is a genderqueer character.

Kacen Callender

Callender was born in Saint Thomas. They are black, trans, and queer. They use both they/them and he/him pronouns. Their work represents the LGBT+ community.

Balzer + Bray (May 5, 2020)

Their latest young adult work, Felix Ever Afteris about a transgender person that catfishes a classmate for revenge but ends up falling in love with him. Felix learns the one thing he had always want to know, to be in love.

Each of these authors has written several books representing each member of the LGBT+ community. It is good to see more queer representation in everyday life. Reading their books will help you understand the community and their journey better.