T5W – Favourite “Unlikeable” Protagonists

top 5 wednesday - unlikeableprotags

This week’s T5W prompt was “‘Unlikeable’ protagonists – People always tear down “unlikeable” protagonists. But tell us the ones you pulled for!” It turns out that this was actually quite a challenge and we are not ashamed to admit we thought about taking the easy way out several times. However, after doing a little bit of digging into who is thought of as unlikeable characters by others, we found some opinions we definitely disagree with.

Jude St. Francis – A Little Life
Chosen by Inchwyrm


The reason I chose Jude is because I see a lot of hate directed his way for being unsympathetic, hard to relate to, too perfect or simply “not gay enough” and I rooted for him because I think that’s an entirely unfair assessment. The author deliberately wrote him to be an imperfect person with many flaws; at the end of the day, he is a victim of abuse and he’s struggling to cope, and all I wanted was for him to have a happy ending.

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Monday Quotes

JTAB care quote


Monday quotes to kick start your week. Given everything that has been going on with terror attacks and tragic fires in London this past week, here’s a beautiful reflection from Gabby Rivera‘s Juliet Takes a Breath. Something we feel everyone needs to remember to right now.

Happy Homo Book Club (5)

T5W: Side Ships

Side Ships

It’s been a busy week, and we didn’t have a lot of time this evening, but we were determined to get together and do T5W no matter what – especially since this week is side ships! Supporting characters’ relationships so often get sidelined by their protagonists’ lime-lit love lives, and we wanted to give a shout out to our forgotten faves!

…Unfortunately, some of us had more luck than others; it turns out it’s remarkably hard to find a decent relationship that doesn’t feature a main character and is also canon?

So, canon be damned, here’s our Top 5:

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Juliet Takes a Breath Review

juliet takes a breath review

This book was received through netgalley

Juliet Takes a Breath is like a love letter to your (younger) queer self. Written by “round, brown loverboi” Gabby Rivera, JTAB is the coming of age story of young Puerto Rican Juliet Palante who leaves the Bronx to start an internship with infamous feminist writer Harlowe Brisbane in an effort to discover her Queer, Feminist, Puerto Rican self.

“Feminism. I’m new to it. The word still sounds weird and wrong. Too white, too structured, too foreign: something I can’t claim… Can a badass white lady like you make room for me? Should I stand next to you and take that space? Or do I need to just push you out of the way? Claim it myself now so that one day we’ll be able to share this earth, this block, these deep breaths?”

As Juliet learns, loves, and grows throughout her time in the Bronx, Portland and Miami, so do we. And boy, what a journey we go on with Juliet as she bounces from coming out to her family before leaving for Portland; to meeting the author of ‘Raging Flower: Empowering Your Pussy by Empowering Your Mind’ Harlowe; being (badly) introduced to “PGP’s” (preferred gendered pronouns), polyamory, WoC only spaces and the power of (cis) women’s bodies; and finding herself knee deep in intersectional tensions within the queer and feminist communities. JTAB provides an immersive and grounding introduction to feminism, queerness and intersectionality through the innocent eyes of Juliet as she struggles to come to grips with this new found language that she has found herself in. This book is not only of massive importance in terms of offering a kick ass representation of a young, fat, nerdy, queer Puerto Rican girl, but also for the thought-provoking discussions that Rivera’s astute observations give rise to.

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T5W: LGBTQ+ Books


What better way to kick start the life of the Happy Homo Book Club than with this week’s Top 5 Wednesday on LGBTQ+ books? We have not yet posted anything due to being fussy perfectionists who dislike the idea of posting on a not yet ready blog but we simply couldn’t pass up this opportunity, especially when Avery found inspiration in romweasley‘s T5W post earlier on today.

Chelsea (romweasley) raised a really excellent point regarding the sad prevalence of problematic and harmful books with LGBTQ+ characters, often written by non-lgbtq people. Even when we sat down to put our own heads together earlier to decide on our top 5 books, we found it difficult to wade through all of the trash we’ve read which either perpetuated harmful narratives, continually erased certain identities (giving you the impression that some LGBTQ+ people are magical unicorns who don’t really exist) or depicted LGBTQ+ characters as tropey stereotypes or tragic martyrs.

Admittedly, having 4 people on a team made it lot easier to come up with 5 books but we still struggled a little bit because we have all been terrible at making time for reading recently (which we hope having this blog will help to rectify), so you may notice that most of these books are not any of the newer books being recommended by other blogger as we have not yet read them. However, we have noticed a tendency for the same books to be recc’d over and over again, and hope that this adds a nice extra bit of diversity to the pool! This list is in no particular order, and there are even a few cheeky extras included at the bottom of books we like but which missed out on being in the top 5.

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