Most anticipated releases of July 2021 | LGBTQIAP and BIPOC authors are stealing the (YA) fantasy spotlight this month! | Diversify your reading in 2021!

Are you ready to grow your TBR list some more? No need for me to wait for your answer because I’ve already gathered some books this month again! June’s coming to an end so…welcome to July’s anticipated reads post! Though I couldn’t find as many books as I usually do, I did find some books that sound absolutely amazing! The best thing? All of them are perfect to diversify your reading! This month there’s a lot of YA and adult fantasy by BIPOC and LGBTQIAP authors and, let’s face it: who doesn’t want that?

Do remember this list is not exhaustive; I can’t feature every single book even if I wanted to. Plus, I made the decision not to feature any books that don’t have any sort of rep. Now, are you ready? Let’s take a walk!

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Six crimson cranes by Elizabeth Lim
Release date: July 6th 2021
Genre: YA fantasy
Representation: Asian main character

We’re starting off strong this month with a book as intriguing as this one! I absolutely fell for this concept and its vibes already (I mean…siblings kinda are my weakness, you know?) so it’d be an understatement to say I’m just looking forward to the execution of the plot! Even without the sibling relationships, I heard forbidden and dark magic, a quest and high stakes so…Yeah, count me in for sure!

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Rise to the sun by Leah Johnson
Release date: July 6th 2021
Genre: YA contemporary/romance
Representation: sapphic relationship, black main characters

But like, Leah Johnson’s debut novel (You should see me in a crown) was so good? You can’t expect me to resist the author’s sophomore novel, especially when the story sounds good, too! I love books that take place during a short amount of time (if they’re not rushed, that is) and this one has that! Plus, it’s set at a music festival which I’m a sucker for! I can’t wait to see what the author does with this and feel like her way of storytelling really could make this story work! “One life-changing musical festival”, y’all…

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What we devour by Linsey Miller
Release date: July 6th 2021
Genre: YA fantasy
Representation: asexual main character

Ah, dark fantasy you say? No way I can resist that! Include an asexual main character and I’m definitely sold! Oh, what do you say there? MORALITY, MORTALITY, AND FANTASY POLITICS? You could say I devour that…okay, let’s cut these jokes and talk about how good this book sounds! I’m all here for stories that discuss things like this while still being a dark fantasy AND having some diversity! And, come on, you said politics???

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The taking of Jake Livingston by Ryan Douglass
Release date: July 13th 2021
Genre: YA horror
Representation: black/mlm (man loving men) main character

A chilling ghost story but make it gay. Honestly about all you need to know, but let me draw you in some more! For as far as I know this is a social thriller-ish book that also deals with racism and mental health which…yes, I’m always in for that. I don’t think I’ve actually ever read a YA horror but I’ve been wanting to dive into them for so long so…no need to reject this one, am I right?

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XOXO by Axie Oh
Release date: July 13th 2021
Genre: YA contemporary/romance
Representation: Korean main characters

Is this book what they call “up in my alley”? Well, no, but come on! I’ve heard amazing things about it and it sounds like a fun book, something I need sometimes, too. And I might be hoping to find out more about Korea and the K-pop industry as well, because I haven’t really done that so far. The music industry can just be a really interesting (and important) topic, especially if we’re talking about K-pop. Plus, forbidden love just has something to it, right?

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A psalm for the wild-built by Becky Chambers
Release date: July 13th 2021
Genre: Adult science fiction
Representation: non-binary main character

Okay so maybe I am completely misunderstanding this but this book literally sounds like it takes scifi and philosophy and just…throws it together? In case that’s true: I-I would very much like that. Make it queer and boom, I am once again anticipating a book (you don’t have to act surprised, I know). The synopsis doesn’t really give away that much, but for some reason that draws me in even more? I don’t know, I’m just really, really intrigued by this!

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She who became the sun by Shelley Parker-Chan
Release date: July 20th 2021
Genre: Adult historical fantasy
Representation: non-binary/lesbian, lesbian and gay main characters, Chinese and Mongolian characters

Well, I guess we’re all just gonna have to prepare to be emotionally damaged by this book, huh? Like, we’re talking about a historical fantasy here that also happens to be a part of the holy sapphic trinity (this is the last one of them and then I own all of them!). I’m so ready for all the intrigue and historical perspectives and ahh, it just sounds like absolute heaven! What are words when this book exists? I can’t possibly explain how ready (and slightly terrified) I am!

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The river has teeth by Erica Waters
Release date: July 20th 2021
Genre: YA fantasy
Representation: sapphic relationship

OH! I am very much in need of this book! A vibey (horror?) fantasy story that is also SAPPHIC? You’re hitting all my weak spots, Erica Waters! I mean, we’re talking about a dark, maybe a bit of a sinister, book that has witches and revenge and mystery and intrigue and how do I breathe when this book exists? Let’s just say this: angry sapphics is something I’d happily die for and now it’s here and you bet I’ll read it!

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Afterlove by Tanya Byrne
Release date: July 22nd 2021
Genre: YA contemporary/fantasy
Representation: sapphic, British Indo-Guyanese/lesbian and lesbian main characters

Do you hear that weird noise in the background? I sincerely apologise for worrying you, but that’s just me thinking about this book. Y’all. If this isn’t a book you’re dying to read, I don’t know what to say anymore because wow. First of all, that cover is sapphic culture and I can only stan, and secondly: not even death will tear them apart??? Just break my heart already, Tanya Byrne. There isn’t even a way to prepare myself for what this book is gonna do to me…


This wasn’t a long list but would you look at those books! All of them sound like must-reads and I’m practically bursting with excitement! Also just a quick announcement: my exams are OVER! I am FREE! I can blog and read and write and annoy all of you again!!!

Anyway, back to the professional outro: I hope you enjoyed reading this post and I’ve persuaded you into pre-ordering some books or adding some of these to your TBR! Remember that pre-ordering or even reading diverse books can truly make a difference, so if you’re able to: let’s support some authors! I’m especially looking forward to reading She who became the sun, but what about you?

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19 thoughts on “Most anticipated releases of July 2021 | LGBTQIAP and BIPOC authors are stealing the (YA) fantasy spotlight this month! | Diversify your reading in 2021!

  1. birdie!!! ahhh i love this list so much, and i cannot wait to read all the wonderful books on this list, as well as diversify my tbr even further haha!! i KNOW she who became the sun will completely break my heart, and XOXO sounds like such a fluffy summer read!! i also have an ARC of six crimson cranes, and though i haven’t gotten to it yet, i can’t wait to!! happy reading!! ❤️❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you ahaana!! and yes, that’s what these lists are good for! if she who became the sun doesn’t make me cry, i don’t know who i am anymore, lol! and i’ve heard amazing things about xoxo so i’m ready for it! have fun with six crimson cranes, can’t wait to hear what you think!! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. birdie omg thank you for this list ahh time for my tbr to expand, though i truly appreciate more diverse reads to look out for!! i was lucky enough to get an arc for six crimson cranes and can assure you that it was such a beautiful retelling… i’m really excited for she who became the sun too! great list and happy reading!! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. always here to add books to your tbr (you can insert an evil laugh here if you want to)!! and yes, diverse reads above anything else for me please! i can’t wait to read six crimson cranes, it indeed sounds beautiful and to hear you affirm that…i shall need it very soon i guess!! and i’d gladly die for she who became the sun! happy reading to you too, love!!

      Liked by 1 person

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