Sapphic YA / NA Stories (IHS Reading Challenge #34)

Welcome to week 34 of the 2022 IHS Sapphic Reading Challenge.

Before we get to the books, we want to remind you of two ways you can interact with other readers to enhance your experience during the challenge this year.

First, you can join the I Heart SapphFic Facebook reader group. Every Monday we will announce the category for the week, and every Wednesday you will have the opportunity to post what book you are reading and be entered into the monthly drawing for a $25 Amazon gift card. (For those who are not on Facebook and still want to enter, remember you can email your reading selection to

Second, we have created a Goodreads group where readers can discuss books, swap recommendations, and generally have a good time.

Below you’ll find reading suggestions. Better yet, 9 of them are on sale, so scoop up some fantastic reads at bargain prices. Before you click any buy buttons, please ensure the sale price matches. (Some international prices may vary.)

The following books are on sale for YA / NA week: August 29 through September 2


Kissing Practice

by Jordan Meadows

$0.99 $3.99 (Also in Kindle Unlimited)

The year is 1987, it’s Nicki’s sixteenth birthday party and she’s having a great time with her best friends, hanging out in a hot tub and listening to the radio while snow falls all around. When a playful practice kiss with one friend, Connie, suddenly turns into more and Nicki likes it — really likes it — she starts down a path of self discovery.

Will she have to keep this a secret from everyone? Does Connie feel the same way or is this really just practice for her? How should Nicki navigate the winter formal and Christmas with a new…girlfriend?


The Moments

by Nicole Pyland

$0.99 $7.99 (Also in Kindle Unlimited)

Bailey Sayers has a decision to make. That decision will impact her entire life. If she says something, she risks embarrassment and her heart. If she doesn’t say something, she may never know if Jenna Cabot feels the same way about her.

In Path I, Bailey risks it all and asks Jenna out on a date on their high school graduation day.

In Path II, Bailey does not ask Jenna out on a date on their high school graduation day.

What follows in both paths is Bailey and Jenna’s story. It’s the most important moments that make up their lives together and apart. It’s the story of how they were always drawn together and always would be. It’s the ups and the downs, the perfect moments and the difficult ones. It’s the tears and the laughter. And it’s the drive to make forever possible with the love of your life no matter the circumstances.


Rising From the Ashes

by Caren J. Werlinger

$0.99 $4.99 (Also in Kindle Unlimited)

Ancient Ireland – an era of clan wars, petty kings and invasions by raiders from the north.

As Christianity tightens its hold, magic and the old ways fight to keep their place in the hearts of the people.

Born into this world is Ash, orphaned and maimed, left to die. She is rescued by a clan of badgers and raised to be one of them. As she grows, so does her magic, until at last she comes to the attention of other humans. Some of them want to protect her; some want to use her.

When she bonds with an orphaned dragon cub, the two of them become pawns in a bid for power. Forced to flee, dragon and dragonmage embark on a quest to seek the answers as to why they were bonded and what their future holds.


Say Yes to the Cheerleader

by Abby Crofton

$0.99 $4.99

Coming out was easy compared to trying to talk to your crush. Especially if it turns out that she likes you back. High school senior Haley Suarez is relieved to be out of the closet. But when just a couple of weeks before graduation beautiful cheerleader Kate Monroe starts to talk to her, and maybe even flirt with her, she isn’t sure what to do. Kate has been her crush for years, but is way out of Haley’s league. What could perfect Kate see in average in every way Haley? Plus, wasn’t Kate straight? The more Haley gets to know Kate the more she sees beyond the perfect cheerleader everyone else sees. If she wants to be with Kate then she’s going to have to stop worrying about what other people might say or think. But that’s easier said than done.


To the Beat of Their Own Drum

by Nicole Higginbotham-Hogue

$0.99 $7.99 

Before becoming members of Jems and Jamz, Spike Bianchi and Jemma Rodriguez were just two lost individuals, trying to find their way in life. Find out how one trip to Texas changed the course of their lives and spurred the evolution of the band known as Jems and Jamz.



by Elizabeth Andre

$0.99 $4.99 

The year is 1993, and those in the gay community are dying of AIDS, caring for people with AIDS, infected with HIV or terrified of catching the virus. Edwin, Julio, Anastasia, and Jennifer are four 20-something friends who decide to spend a sunny Saturday doing the right thing: getting an HIV test at one of Chicago’s public health clinics.

Together they learn that fear can tear people apart as much as it brings them closer, and that their blood, along with their hearts and spirits, will be tested in ways they can’t even imagine.


The Artemis Adventure

by Dorothy Rice Bennett

$0.99 $4.99 (Also in Kindle Unlimited)

Kiki Rodriquez dreams of college, but her poor family cannot help. Deciding to go it on her own, she crosses the country by Greyhound and friendly woman trucker. Dropped off in California at dusk, she hides out for the night—only to find that she’s on a college campus.


Playing Catch-Up

by Zoey Lennox

$0.99 (Also in Kindle Unlimited)

Twenty-three-year-old Alexis Lenz’s life is a mess: she hates her job, has lost touch with most of her friends, and her love life is non-existent.

When she meets LGBTQ youth counsellor Ramie Ramirez at a dinner party, sparks fly. But Ramie is still putting herself back together after an acrimonious split from her long-term girlfriend and is only looking for something casual. If living with the repercussions of her ex’s lies has taught her one thing, it’s to keep her heart locked up tight.

As the two women begin to date, Alexis finds herself in a predicament. She’s never dated a woman before and is afraid Ramie will dump her sorry arse once she finds out.

What’s a girl to do? A little white lie can’t hurt, can it? It’s not like they’re going to do something stupid like fall in love…


Exception to the Rule

by Cindy Rizzo

$2.99 (Also in Kindle Unlimited)

What will keep you safe—and sane—when you find yourself in a new and unfamiliar place convinced you’ll never find anyone like you?

For Robin and Tracy, it’s the rules they set for themselves as they begin their first semester at Adams University near Boston.

This is a love story about two young women who can only find their true selves by finding one another. But are Robin and Tracy willing to give up all they think they know in order to find happiness?

Sometimes in life, the person who will matter most is the one who’s an exception to the rule.


Keep scrolling for more suggestions!


Liquid Courage

by Stephanie Shea

Alexandria Van Kirk has always been a slave to her romantic nature. When a night of liquid courage lands her in bed with one of her best friends, Alex is confronted by a host of feelings that terrify her. Feelings about her friend and, unexpectedly, a barista from her favorite café.

It’s a tug of war between heart and body. Desire against all her daydreams of someone to share silence, sunsets, and coffee with.

But Alex’s past is also about to catch up with her. Tortured memories and the girl they’re all about. It’s like fighting the pull of a whirlwind. A surefire losing battle. But embracing a newfound romance amid the return of an old flame is a precarious balance, one not even Alex herself is sure she can manage.

How the hell does she choose between the girl she loves and the one she could never confess loving to begin with?


When I’m With You

by Monica McCallan

Available in Kindle Unlimited

Kennedy Ryan and Brooke Nicholas have circled around one another for years without getting to know one another, but getting stuck together during a post-college trip is going to change that. A growing friendship, an abandoned puppy, and no one to act as a buffer between them is going to upend a lot of ideas they had about one another.

Kennedy finally realizes she may have only scratched the surface where Brooke is concerned, and Brooke is terrified that she’s falling in love with her best friend.


The Infinite Summer

by Morgan Lee Miller

Remi Brenner will one day see the world. Literally. She’s one summer away from starting her degree in aerospace at MIT, but then her dad cuts off her college tuition until they repair their estranged relationship. Remi has no choice but to spend her summer with him and her annoyingly famous stepmom in resort town Gaslight Shores, South Carolina.

Harper Hebert wishes her life didn’t revolve around her family’s restaurant, a staple in Gaslight Shores for more than seven decades. When a new restaurant is opened by a famous chef and business begins to decline, Harper’s dreams of ever making it on her own are threatened.

The more Remi and Harper’s friendship blossoms into something deeper, the more Remi becomes tangled in the intense restaurant rivalry between her stepmom and the Heberts. She knows she has to tell Harper, but the truth could scare away the only person who can capture her summer and her heart.


The Distance Between Us

by Callie Hall

Available in Kindle Unlimited

She says our kiss was an accident. She swears it didn’t mean anything. If that’s true, why is she holding my hand? More importantly, why am I still okay with it?

Stuck in the friend zone, Madison’s used to Lacey keeping her at arm’s length, but as the summer draws to a close, Madison struggles with the kiss her best friend’s determined to forget. Of course, Lacey dragging her into a lingerie shop and holding her hand doesn’t help. If anything, Lacey’s unusual behavior ever since that night at the lake house confuses things even more.

Madison promised to keep their kiss to herself. She promised to never bring it up again.

But the funny thing about trying to hold back the truth is that it always has a way of coming out.

Of course, having a romantic outburst for your best friend right before she goes off to college probably isn’t the best idea.

Especially not when that friend’s moving halfway across the state to pursue their dream.


The Valkyrie’s Daughter

by Tiana Warner

From the time she was born, Sigrid has only ever been ordinary. Being paired at birth with a plain horse—instead of the powerful winged mare of a valkyrie—meant there would be no warrior path for her. No riding the skies, no glory among the nine worlds. Just the simple, unremarkable life of a stable hand.

Everything changes when a terrible enemy ambushes Vanaheim and Sigrid sees a vision of herself atop a mythical stallion, leading the valkyries into a harrowing battle. Finally, she can grab her future with her own two hands and become the hero of her own story…if she dares.

But her destiny is tied up with Mariam, a fallen valkyrie who’s allied herself with the very enemy Sigrid is trying to stop.

Now Sigrid has left ordinary behind as she begins a journey with the beautiful—if treacherous—valkyrie, each step bringing her closer to answers…and to awakened feelings for Mariam.

Only, the life Sigrid has escaped may have been paradise compared to the one she’s racing toward. Because her destination is the realm of the dead: the gates of Hel.



by Emily Alter

Available in Kindle Unlimited

For a relationship to work, it is not just love which is demanded. Confidence is, too.

Alexis is starting her first job. As someone who’s always been shielded, and unlucky with partners that considered her too subdued, or even boring (that last comment, especially, would always sting the most), she doesn’t really know what to expect when she first meets a captivating, and seemingly self-assured waitress.

Sierra is a struggling artist who comes from a problematic household. With her father in prison, she is soon forced to gain independence. Working at a bakery with two owners who treat her like they would their own daughter, she can start to regain her sense of security. It’s hard, though, when miscommunication and doubt get in the way.


Queen of All

by Anya Leigh Josephs

Jena lives on her family’s struggling farm and in her beautiful friend Sisi’s shadow. She’s not interested in Sisi’s plans to uncover the Kingdom’s darkest secrets: the suppression of magic, and the crown prince’s systemic murder of those who practice it. Jena only wants to keep a secret of her own—her changing feelings for Sisi. Yet when a letter arrives summoning Sisi to the royal Midwinter Ball, Jena has no choice but to follow her into a new world of mystery and danger.

Sisi falls into a perilous romance with the very crown prince she despises. Desperate to save her, Jena searches for answers in the halls of the palace and in the ancient texts of its library.

She discovers that the chance to save her friend, and their world, lies in her own ability to bring the magic back and embrace her own power.


One With the Pack

by C. A. Hall

Available in Kindle Unlimited

For centuries, the Boundary has offered sanctuary to Anna’s pack, but every shield has a breaking point, and this one’s about to fall.

With her mother ill and humans venturing too close to their territory, Anna’s responsibility is to the pack and keeping their existence safe. Unless she agrees to bond with an alpha-male from an opposing pack, the wall hiding her world from human eyes will crack.

There’s just one small, irreversible problem. Anna’s already promised her heart to another, and Rowan—the she-wolf who effortlessly stole her heart—isn’t an alpha at all.

Under the threat of war and in a world where wolves mate for life, can Anna protect her family without betraying the woman she loves?


Wolf Healer

by Huckleberry Rahr

Available in Kindle Unlimited

Although she trips over her own feet during gym class, Jade’s confident her academics are spot on to become the next healer for her parent’s werewolf pack. But when her best friend invites her to spring break in Florida, everything she thought she knew shatters.

Returning to Wisconsin, with carefully guarded secrets laid bare, Jade struggles to find acceptance. As the blows keep coming, she and her closest friends confront the packs intolerances.

Will she be able to hold the pieces of her shattering life together long enough to find a new path?


Happy reading!

Faith, Em, Miranda, & TB

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About TBM

TB Markinson is an American who's recently returned to the US after a seven-year stint in the UK and Ireland. When she isn't writing, she's traveling the world, watching sports on the telly, visiting pubs in New England, or reading. Not necessarily in that order. Her novels have hit Amazon bestseller lists for lesbian fiction and lesbian romance. She cohosts the Lesbians Who Write Podcast ( with Clare Lydon. TB also runs I Heart Lesfic (, a place for authors and fans of lesfic to come together to celebrate lesbian fiction.
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