365 Gays of the Year (Plus 1 for a Leap Year)
Discover LGBTQ+ history one day at a time
by Lewis Laney
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Pub Date 18 Apr 2023 | Archive Date 13 Jun 2023
Quarto Publishing Group – White Lion, White Lion Publishing
Discover your queer hero and learn something new every day with 365 Gays of the Year, an accessible and fun introduction to LGBTQ+ history through the people that made it.
Carefully curated and thoughtfully researched, author Lewis Laney assigns a person or group of note to each day of the year to form the ultimate LGBTQ+ hall of fame.
Legendary queer icons such as Marsha P Johnson and Freddie Mercury sit alongside lesser known but equally important names such as activist Renée Cafiero, blood donor Barbara Vick, and Sappho the lesbian poet (who was doing her thing in 570BC).
All have contributed amazing achievements to the LGBTQ+ story. Each month also features one ally - inspiring heterosexual people who have all contributed something significant to the lives of the LGBTQ+ community. People like Elizabeth Taylor who “brought AIDS out of the closet and into the ballroom – where there was money to be raised”.
Each entry comprises a short biography plus a brief explanation about why that celebratory date represents an important milestone.
Lewis brings international figures to life (famous and lesser-known) with his witty and uplifting prose which are peppered with little-known facts and accompanied by bright illustrative portraits from the hugely talented Charlotte MacMillan-Scott.
This witty, unique celebration of queer history promises to inspire and empower readers with its wealth of bright stars.
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 50 members
As an ex-christian, I do miss my little daily devotionals ritual. I will happily purchase this book when it comes out. Entries are laid out in a daily format, one Gay icon on each page, with full color illustrations of the person. Little blurbs accompany each name and illustration that are perfect for a quick morning or evening read.
Lewis Laney's 365 Gays of the Year is FABULOUS.. The icons celebrated in this beautiful collection are all fearless, amazing members and supporters of the LGBTQ+ community. Laney introduces us to so many fierce advocates and brings the spotlight to those who are true leaders and role models. I was shocked by some of the celebrities featured (James Dean!) and awed by some of the bravest voices (Liberace, Elton John, Madonna). As a proud mom of a teenager who will hopefully grace the pages of a book like this one someday, I will be first in line to order a copy of this vibrantly illustrated and tremendously important book.
I LOVE this book so much. The history and facts shared about each person is so enlightening and I loved the idea about using it as a calendar. The people vary from very long ago to very recent. Would highly recommend.
Beautiful book and a great addition to any shelves for anyone that wants to learn more about people.
This book has one entry per day of the year featuring one person that is either an ally or a known (or even not as well known gay person) and gives a small overview of that person.
I liked how it gives a nice overview and i really liked learning more about different people that i didn't know about.
I think it would be fantastic book for libraries, schools or any kind of place where a lot of people can flip through this book and read a few entries or a book where one can read through in an entire year (or a few years) and just focus on one day and one person.
Very well done book, worth the look and read!
365 Gays of the Year is structured so that each page is dedicated to a day of the year. Laney gives a few paragraphs of introduction, and the rest of the page shows a portrait of the individual (or an imagined portrait for premodern individuals). It could be read as part of a daily practice, but would also be an excellent coffee table book to pick up and flip through at random.
Laney selected a wide range of individuals representing many time periods and cultures. I was pleased to see that he included younger people, like Lil Nas X, Jojo Siwa, and Jazz Jennings, in addition to the "elders." While I had heard of most of the American, British, and Canadian figures, I learned about Xian (a lesbian Chinese activist), Luiz Mott (a gay Brazilian anthropologist), and Mima Simic (a lesbian Croatian politician).
Laney's biographies are concise but informative. Since the focus is on the art almost as much as the information, their brevity does not detract from the book overall. He does add a "Discover More" section at the end, which contains recommendations for books, articles, podcasts, and even Youtube videos.
Overall, I enjoyed my time with it and learned a lot. I can see myself coming back to 365 Gays when planning my recurring "This Month in History" book display.
What a brilliant concept, I loved it! And I especially loved the bright illustrations; perfect for the bold and bright people who feature in this book. This would be a great to have on your coffee table. I'm surprised the publishers didn't decide to publish this in the winter given its calendar-like nature, as it would make a great Christmas present to the LGBT+/ally members of friends and family. I'll definitely be gifting it to some of my circle.
This book achieves what it promises. It gives the reader one brief lgtbq+ biography for reading each day of the year. It is not a deep analysis of this people’s stories but that is not what this book promised!
I really enjoyed getting to know people of the community and even more this dynamic of reading just one of them each day. This way, it isn’t a heavy reading and you don’t get bored at all.
All in all, I highly recommend this book, so as to introduce yourself into the real lgtbq+ stories because we do exist and need spaces like this to be known and recognised. Thus, have you got the opportunity, get this book and embrace our pride.
This book may lack the depth of other queer historical texts, but it makes up for it in its approachability and breadth of coverage of LGBTQ+ figures. The individuals included span various time periods, geographies, professions, and sexualities. I learned about so many individuals by reading this book that, previously, I had either not encountered before or had not known were LGBTQ+. I would gladly re-read it again.
One minor criticism I have of the book is that certain individuals included are not confirmed as being LGBTQ+ (example: Mary Anning). The text acknowledges when that occurs, as well as the way queer expression varies based on time-period, culture, and geography. However, it still feels misleading to label them as 'Gay' in those circumstances. Fortunately, these entries are rare.