This month, as part of signing up for all the challenges, I decided to participate in December Diversity Bingo. The aim is to get five in a row, and I’m pretty close at the moment (I may have finished it by the time this actually goes up!). I’ve chosen to go from non-binary character down.
So far, I’ve enjoyed every book I’ve read. Things like Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe and Cress (Lunar Chronicles) are ones that I was always planning to read, not in a way specific to diversity. But Huntress (Malinda Lo) and Symptoms of Being Humans were books I sought out specifically for this challenge, and they really blew me away with how good they were.
The problem is, I basically never read diverse books that aren’t popular, until I signed up for this challenge. For some reason, it never occurred to me to properly seek out good representation – instead, I’ll sit here and type out an angry post about how little representation there is in mainstream writing. Good on me, right? But, shockingly, there’s a lot of really great stuff out there! My library has a lot more than I thought, and it’s really time that I started making the most of that. It’s really just a matter of looking for books, instead of hoping they’re going to be the next best thing and I’ll just find them by accident.
So, that’s my challenge to me in 2017; read more diversely. I have signed up for a little bingo thing, similar to this December one, but I’m not going to stress myself out over reading everything on the bingo thing. I mean, they’re definitely good ideas, but if I read 5 LGBTQ+ books, beyond just a gay couple, and they’re all contemporary instead of fantasy, I won’t stress. Sure, the bingo won’t be completed, but that’s still more diverse reading than I was doing before!
I’m going to be scouring the internet for recommendations (I’ve already added loads from this list), so I’d love to know what you recommend! I need everything I can get my hands on!