This Book is Gay

Juno Dawson

Sourcebooks, 2015

Plot Summary

Lesbian. Bisexual. Queer. Transgender. Straight. Curious. This book is for everyone, regardless of gender or sexual preference. This book is for anyone who's ever dared to wonder. This book is for YOU.

There's a long-running joke that, after "coming out," a lesbian, gay guy, bisexual, or trans person should receive a membership card and instruction manual. THIS IS THAT INSTRUCTION MANUAL. You're welcome.

Inside you'll find the answers to all the questions you ever wanted to ask: from sex to politics, hooking up to stereotypes, coming out and more. This candid, funny, and uncensored exploration of sexuality and what it's like to grow up LGBT also includes real stories from people across the gender and sexual spectrums, not to mention hilarious illustrations.

You will be entertained. You will be informed. But most importantly, you will know that however you identify (or don't) and whomever you love, you are exceptional. You matter. And so does this book.


  • Kirkus Review (2015 April 1). Nonfiction 12-18 “Easily readable tables and humorous cartoons further liven up the presentation. To add more perspectives, segments from interviewees who represent areas of the LGBT spectrum not represented by the author himself are also included.”


  • The Guardian (2014 October 7). “I commend James Dawson for writing such a funny, brilliant, informative and as-far-from-patronising-as-can-possibly-be book. That sentence structure just flew out the window.”


  • Publisher’s Weekly (2015 June 22).Ages 14 and up “First published in the U.K., this irreverent, informative handbook offers a wide-ranging overview of gender identity, sexual orientation, coming out, dating, and more.”


Over the Rainbow Project book list, 2016

Response to challenges

Texas superintendent tells librarians to pull books on sexuality, transgender people (2022 March 23). “He also made it clear that his concerns specifically included books with LGBTQ themes, even if they do not describe sex. Those comments, according to legal experts, raise concerns about possible violations of the First Amendment and federal civil rights laws that protect students from discrimination based on their gender and sexuality.”

I wrote the ninth most banned book in America. That sucks. (2022, April 25). “Who else does removing these books from libraries hurt except LGBTQ teenagers? Taking This Book is Gay out of a school isn’t going to stop young people figuring out their identity, but it will leave them without a valuable resource.”

Reference list

Dawson, Juno. (2022, April 25). I wrote the ninth most banned book in America. That sucks. The New Statesman. d-book-in-america-that-sucks

Hixenbaugh, Mike and Schwartz, Jeremy. (2022, March 23). Texas superintendent tells librarians to pull books on sexuality, transgender people. NBC News. ity-transgender-rcna20992

This book is gay. (2016). American Library Association. Retrieved July 12, 2022, from

This Book is Gay. (2015 April 1). Kirkus Review. Retrieved July 12, 2022, from

This book is gay. (2015 June 22). Publisher’s Weekly. Retrieved July 12, 2022, from

This Book Is Gay by James Dawson: review. (2014 October 7). The Guardian. Retrieved July 12, 2022, from this-book-is-gay?scrlybrkr=85718bc9




Book Resume created by Virginia Library Association and PDSAL