For immediate release | January 28, 2020

2020 Over the Rainbow Book List features 70 titles for adult readers

PHILADELPHIA -- The Over the Rainbow Book List Committee of the American Library Association's Rainbow Roundtable (RRT) gave careful consideration to 324 books this year, 152 fiction and 172 nonfiction. Choosing 32 fiction titles and 38 nonfiction titles to make up the complete 2020 Over the Rainbow Book List, the committee was thrilled by the continued expansion of queer publishing, the depth of substantial topics covered, and the number of quality books from all over the genre spectrum. No longer is the focus solely upon stories of tragedy, but rather about lives filled with joy.

The top ten fiction and nonfiction titles are:

"Black Leopard, Red Wolf" by Marlon James, published by Riverhead Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House, 2019.

"Buying Gay: How Physique Entrepreneurs Sparked a Movement" by David K. Johnson, published by Columbia University Press, 2019.

"Claiming the B in LGBT: Illuminating the Bisexual Narrative" edited by Kate Harrad, published by Thorntree Press, 2018.

"Eyes Bottle Dark with a Mouthful of Flowers" by Jake Skeets, published by Milkweed Editions, 2019.

"Gideon the Ninth" by Tamsyn Nuir, published by Tom Doherty Associates, 2019.

"In the Dream House" by Carmen Maria Machado, published by Graywolf Press, 2019.

"Introduction to Transgender Studies" by Ardel Haefele-Thomas, published by Harrington Park Press, 2019.

"The Lady's Guide to Celestial Mechanics" by Olivia Waite, published by Avon Impulse, 2019.

"The Priory of the Orange Tree" by Samantha Shannon, published by Bloomsbury Publishing, 2019.

"When Brooklyn Was Queer" by Hugh Ryan, published by St. Martin’s Press, 2019.

To view the complete 2019 bibliography, please visit:

The charge of the Over the Rainbow Book List Committee is to promote the improved quality and accessibility of LGBTQIA+ literature through the creation of an annual annotated bibliography of books for general adult readership. Committee members select titles that exhibit commendable literary quality and significant, authentic LGBTQIA+ content and are recommended for adults over age 18. The Over the Rainbow Book List Committee (OTR) coordinates with other Rainbow Round Table committees to promote the improved quality and accessibility of LGBTQIA+ literature.

The Rainbow Round Table (RRT) – formerly known as the GLBTRT - of the American Library Association, is the oldest professional association for LGBTQIA+ people in the United States. It is committed to serving the information needs of the LGBTQIA+ professional library community and information and access needs of individuals at large. It is home to Rainbow Book Month, a nationwide celebration every June, and the Stonewall Book Award, the first award honoring LGBTQIA+ books. The Rainbow Round Table is committed to encouraging and supporting the free and necessary access to all information, as reflected by the missions of the American Library Association and democratic institutions.


Briana Jarnagin

Program Coordinator, Community Engagement