Alphabet Soup

I recently came across the Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge, and when I first saw the title, my mind jumped to the alphabet soup of sexual and gender identity labels. Oh, that’s a cool challenge, I thought. You have to read a book about every identity in the soup. But no… the challenge is to read a book with a title starting with every letter of the alphabet. Well, that sounds fun too. But why don’t I do both!

Letters of the Alphabet:

A: Arrows of the Queen, Mercedes Lackey
B: Behemoth, Scott Westerfeld
C: Cinder, Marissa Meyer
D: The Dragonfly Pool, Eva Ibbotson
E: Elementary, ed. Mercedes Lackey
F: Fire in the Hills, Donna Jo Napoli
G: Goliath, Scott Westerfeld
H: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, J K Rowling
I: Island of the Aunts, Eva Ibbotson
J: Jinx’s Magic, Sage Blackwood
K: Katya’s World, Jonathan L. Howard
L: The Lost Steersman, Rosemary Kirstein
M: Melting Stones, Tamora Pierce
N: A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan
O: The Outlaws of Sherwood, Robin McKinley
P: Pantomime, Laura Lam
Q: Quiditch Through the Ages, Kennilworthy Whisp (J K Rowling)
R: The Rithmatist, Brandon Sanderson
S: Stones in Water, Donna Jo Napoli
T: Tuesdays at the Castle, Jessica Day George
U: Under the Vale, Mercedes Lackey
V: A Vision of Light, Judith Merkle Riley
W: Warming Trend, Karin Kallmaker




Letters of Identity:

(Only, it’s difficult to decide which ones to include, and the subtleties of many are not well represented in literature. I’ll add to the list as I go…)

Lesbian: Melt, Robbi McCoy
Bisexual: Champion of the Rose, Andrea K Höst
Pansexual: I’m thinking Shadowplay, Laura Lam, is a good candidate here, for Drystan.
Gay: Magpie Lord, KJ Charles;
Asexual: The Deed of Paksenarrion, Elizabeth Moon; The Tropic of Serpents, Marie Brennan
Intersex: Pantomime, Laura Lam, for Gene/Micah
Transgender: I am J, Cris Beam; Jack, L C Cate
Genderqueer: Shadowplay again, also for Micah. (Have I mentioned how awesome these books are?!)A Matter of Trust, Radclyffe
Open relationships? Polyamory? Nonstandard family structure? I’m not sure what to call this, but it deserves an entry on this list: Earth Logic, Laurie J. Marks (most people seem to couple in pairs, but several couples might live together and raise children as if all are mothers and fathers. The words husband and wife are used, but (the characters note that) they aren’t well defined. Other unusual but not well defined relationship-ey things happen.)


Here’s a good listing of terminology. For other sources, do a quick google search on “alphabet soup identity.”

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