Celebrate Pride Month Two New LGBTQ Stories from These YA Authors Are Sure to be Among the Summer’s Most Popular Beach Reads Ric Speaks with Dean Atta and Ciara Smyth About Their Highly Anticipated New YA Novels

June is Pride Month, when the world’s LGBT communities come together and celebrate the freedom to be themselves. Pride Month arrives during an especially difficult time for our nation when divisiveness, inequality and prejudice are sadly all too common. This month, two new YA novels remind us of something we all collectively share, namely the journey to find ourselves and find love, regardless of gender or race.

Ric Speaks with Dean Atta (The Black Flamingo) and Ciara Smyth (The Falling in Love Montage) about their much-anticipated new novels and the importance of Pride Month, now more than ever.

• The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta — From acclaimed UK poet and performer Dean Atta, The Black Flamingo is a fierce coming-of-age story about Michael, a mixed-race gay teen growing up in London. All his life, he’s navigated what it means to be Greek and Jamaican—but never quite feeling Greek or Black enough. When he discovers the Drag Society, he finally finds where he belongs—and the Black Flamingo is born. Told with raw honesty, insight, and lyricism, this debut explores the layers of identity that make us who we are—and allow us to shine.

• The Falling in Love Montageby Ciara Smyth — Two girls embark on a summer of dates in this hilarious and heartfelt lesbian rom-com from Belfast author Ciara Smyth. Seventeen-year-old cynic Saoirse Clarke isn’t looking for a relationship, but when she meets mischievous Ruby, that rule goes right out the window. But Ruby has a loophole in mind: a summer of all the best cliché movie montage dates, with a definite ending come fall—no broken hearts, no messy breakup. It would be the perfect plan, if they didn’t fall in love for real. Ciara Smyth’s debut is a delightful, multilayered story that will make you laugh, cry, and absolutely fall in love.

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