Top 10 Lesbian Mothers In Fiction

This is an awesome list of the Top 10 Lesbian Mothers In Fiction done by author Laina Villeneuve.

Last Mother’s day, I tossed out a post about some of my favorite books with mothers, and Sheena said it sounded like I had a top ten list going. It’s now a new year, and I’ve finally created a list that feels right. When I started, I had read ten books that had kids in them. I expanded my reading in search of books that tackled the act of parenting. My favorite books have protagonists who feel like friends, and these days, it’s parenting that gives me the easy conversation starter. I could talk kids with these ten couples. Here’s why:

georgia beers starting from scratch1 Starting from Scratch by Georgia Beers

Published by: Brisk Press

Synopsis

What happens when your life takes an unexpected turn?

What happens when you need to protect the one you love from the one you want to love?

What happens when you lose something you never knew you wanted?

Lambda and Golden Crown Literary Award-winning author Georgia Beers brings to you her long-awaited seventh novel, Starting from Scratch, a story where learning, laughing, loving, and baked goods are just a few of life’s basic ingredients.

Why I Love It

Starting from Scratch…where life is what you make it.

That Avery loves Max as much as she loves Elena is just one of many, many things I love about this book. I like the added complication that Max had two moms before Avery fell for Elena. There are so many times in my own life as a mother that I remember Avery’s disappointment that Cindy isn’t watching when Max does something well at his game. That one scene has improved my life as a parent. That the title fits in with the parenting theme adds even more to my love of this book.

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Heart of the Game by Rachel Spangler2 Heart of the Game by Rachel Spangler

Published by: Bold Strokes Books

Synopsis

Sometimes baseball is just a metaphor for life, and sometimes it works the other way around. All Sarah Duke ever cared about was baseball, and she’s finally earned her shot as a full-time sports writer. She loves the work, she loves being one of the few women to ever gain access to a man’s world, but most of all, she loves the game. When Duke meets Molly Grettano and her two sons at the ballpark, she instantly connects with the young family, but Molly isn’t sure Duke’s ready for something more. Molly wants someone softer, more feminine, and more importantly, someone steady. She and her boys have been abandoned before, and she’s vowed to never to put them in that position again. If she were ever to trust anyone, it would have to be someone fully dedicated to her and her children. Duke has a lot of heart, but neither woman is sure there’s enough room left in it for anything other than baseball.

Why I Love It

The romance that grows between Duke and Molly is intertwined with Duke’s love for Joe and Charlie. Though it’s clear that Joe and Duke bond over baseball, what caught my heart more was how Charlie was portrayed. As Duke and Molly discuss, he is his own person, and I appreciated seeing the depiction of a quirky kid. His response to the question, “And who might you be?” captures the spirit of childhood so beautifully. I love how this book explored the delights children can bring to the adult world, even when they are wrapped in a challenging package.

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To Love Free by Chris Paynter3 To Love Free by Chris Paynter

Published by: Companion Publications

Synopsis

World-renowned artist Madison Lorraine leads a quiet life in Islamorada, Florida, with her nine-year-old daughter, Mo. Madison hasn’t painted in over three years since her wife and muse, Callie, lost her battle with cancer.

Supermodel Gabrielle Valenci’s arrival at her family home in Islamorada unsettles Madison’s comfortable routine. Gabrielle has left a floundering relationship behind in New York and travels to Florida to undergo the last of her chemotherapy. Her prognosis is excellent, but her journey since the initial cancer diagnosis has been rocky.

The appearance of a dolphin in their cove coincides with Gabrielle’s arrival next door. With each unannounced visit, he inspires Gabrielle and Madison as he gently nudges them together. Soon, Madison is accompanying Gabrielle to her treatments. Although the bond between them strengthens and their mutual attraction grows, both are hesitant to take the next step. Can they learn To Love Free again?

Sometimes, the fragile human heart is reluctant to heal. But Madison and Gabrielle never counted on the persistence of one determined, magical dolphin they call “Free.”

Why I Love It

In this book, Madison is a widow who is now a single mom. Since Mo is a bigger kid, she and her mom have a relationship. Together they have vulnerabilities, and they have hope. I love how this book included the realities that a date is complicated by the fact that moms need someone to watch their kids. I also liked how carefully Madison weighs whether or not she can risk both her heart and Mo’s on a future with Gabrielle.

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g benson all the little moments review4 All the Little Moments by G Benson

Published by: Ylva Publishing

Synopsis

A successful anaesthetist, Anna is focused on herself, her career, and her girlfriend. Everything changes abruptly when her brother’s and sister-in-law’s deaths devastate her and her family. Left responsible for her young niece and nephew, Anna finds herself dumped and alone in Melbourne, a city she doesn’t even like. She tries to navigate the shock of looking after two children battling with their grief while managing her own.

Filled with self-doubt, Anna feels as if she’s making a mess of the entire thing, especially when she collides with a long-legged stranger. Anna barely has time to brush her teeth in the morning, let alone to date a woman—least of all one who has no idea about the two kids under her care.

Just when Anna finally starts to feel as if she’s getting some control of the situation, the biggest fight begins and Anna really has to step up once and for all.

Why I Love It

This book covers the parent immersion with the inherited children. Benson explores the struggles and the stresses, but also the great joys of parenting without getting bogged down in the dreary day to day. It really is the moments that highlight how Anna becomes a mom to her niece and nephew.

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5 The Shaken Series books three and four by KG MacGregor

Published by: Bella Books

Small Packages by KG MacGregorBook 3 Small Packages by KG MacGregor

Synopsis

In Without Warning, they fell in love. In Aftershock, that love was tested and reaffirmed. Now Anna and Lily Kaklis face questions about family and future when a homeless woman is killed in San Francisco, leaving a three-year-old who happens to be Lily’s nephew in foster care.

Lily will not allow her birth mother to ruin another childhood, but ways to save the little one rapidly dwindle. She can’t arrange for adoption herself, not when Anna is clearly terrified at the prospect of raising a child.

Anna is happy to let Lily do the temporary parenting necessary until a suitable adoption placement can be found. It won’t last long, and then their lives will go back to normal. At least that was the plan, then Lily is called away. Anna finds herself alone with her worst nightmare: a toddler.

In this third book of The Shaken Series, 2007 Lambda Literary winner KG MacGregor continues the compelling tale of two women who discover that real love has no limitations.

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Mother Load by KG MacGregorBook 4 Motherload by KG MacGregor

Synopsis

An earthquake didn’t break them. Old demons only tested and deepened their commitment. Even a four-year-old couldn’t tear them apart. Now Anna and Lily Kaklis embrace a new adventure: adding to their family.

As usual, the timing couldn’t be better. Lily’s only involved in the most important case of her career, and Anna’s struggling to keep her auto empire above water in the sinking economy. It’ll be easy to fit in trips to the fertility clinic, right?

What Anna knows is she’s no longer afraid of parenting and their adopted son Andy deserves siblings…whether he thinks so or not. But when Lily’s pregnancy faces complications, it’s a tumultuous journey as they test their understanding of love in brand new ways.

In this fourth book of the award-winning The Shaken Series, Lambda Literary Award winner KG MacGregor continues the compelling tale of two women who discover that real love has no limitations.

Why I Love It

I know it’s kind of cheating to list a series, but then I get to say how I loved that Anna and Lily faced several parenting issues. In Small Packages, MacGregor explores the effect of adopting a young child has on her established couple. In Mother Load, MacGregor  showcases Anna’s parenting and explores some fertility issues.

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flight sqa016 by ae radley6 Flight SQA016 by AE Radley

Published by: Ylva Publishing

Synopsis

Spurred on by overwhelming and ever-increasing debts, Emily White takes a job working in the first-class cabin on the prestigious commuter route from her home of New York to London with Crown Airlines. A gruelling transatlantic schedule means she is in the air nearly as much as she is on the ground and desperately misses her five-year-old son.

On board she meets Olivia Lewis, who is a literal high-flying business executive with a weekly commute, a meticulous schedule, and terrible social skills.

When a personal emergency brings them together, will Emily be able to swallow her pride and accept help from Olivia? And will Olivia be able to prevent herself from saying the wrong thing?

Why I Love It

This book tackles the harsh realities of a tricky parenting situation, the enormous sacrifices that are made in terms of juggling work hours and child care. It doesn’t sound very romantic, but it is one of those stories that puts you into such a real conflict that you feel compelled to see how it’s all going to work out.

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jae backwards to oregon7 Backwards to Oregon by Jae

Published by: Ylva Publishing

Synopsis

“Luke” Hamilton has always been sure that she’d never marry. She accepted that she would spend her life alone when she chose to live her life disguised as a man.

After working in a brothel for three years, Nora Macauley has lost all illusions about love. She no longer hopes for a man who will sweep her off her feet and take her away to begin a new, respectable life.

But now they find themselves married and on the way to Oregon in a covered wagon, with two thousand miles ahead of them.

Why I Love It

I loved that Luke was such a good dad to Nora’s daughter, Amy. Can you even imagine what it would be like to have a kid and be traveling out west by wagon train to help settle the western territory? I can, because I read this book.

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Blessed Twice by Lynn Gallie8 Blessed Twice by Lynn Galli

Published by: Penikila Press

Synopsis

The problem with starting over in another state after losing your partner is that your new friends don’t understand why you can’t just get over it. They never saw how you were together, how much you loved her, how she was your life. They only see a number: three, as in, the number of years since she died. That’s all the evidence they need to begin pressuring you to get back out there again. It doesn’t matter that you’ve told them to back off. No, they feel it is their duty to butt into your life and ambush you with blind dates.

This wasn’t a predicament Briony Gatewood anticipated when she relocated for tenure at a prestigious university. Yet after a year with her new friends, they’ve ceased being merely concerned and moved on to obnoxious. As if being fixed up wasn’t bad enough, the dean at her college just volunteered her to teach a potentially career damaging class. Along for the experimental course is the socially challenged M Desiderius, a fellow professor who won’t ever win a faculty popularity contest. But as they start working together, Briony begins to understand M’s aloofness and is intrigued by the shy, brilliant, passionate woman. Enough so that she’s starting to believe her friends when they say it’s time to move on. And M, as complicated as her past has been and reticent as she seems now, may be the perfect person to help Briony finally heal and love again.

Why I Love It

I love that both Briony and M both have little people in their lives and the boys’ friendship contributes to their growing relationship. Because of Briony’s son is friends with Hank, she knows a bit of sign language which comes up in a scene that tips her friendship with M into something a bit more.  The boys aren’t there, but it’s one of my favorite scenes.

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Roller Coaster by Karin Kallmaker9 Roller Coaster by Karin Kallmaker

Published by: Bella Books

Synopsis

Two very different reasons brought Laura Izmani and Helen Baynor to the Beach Boardwalk for a symbolic ride on the biggest wooden roller coaster on the west coast. They part strangers, but only after sharing an experience that shifted both of their lives onto new tracks.

Their paths cross again decades later when Laura interviews with Helen to become the private chef for the Baynor household. Given what Laura revealed during that fateful coaster ride, she’s relieved that Helen seems to have forgotten her.

Fiercely protective of her children, Helen—now a famous stage actress and widow with teenaged twins—divides her time between home in a sleepy California enclave and the bright lights of Broadway. Continuing her carefully managed life until her children leave for college is all she wants.

Their first roller coaster ride together may turn out to be only a prelude…

Why I Love It

I love that Helen’s children are grown but still important to her and that the romance grows as Laura nurtures the teens. That the trust slow to build between the women is tested by Julie’s food allergy rings so true to me.

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The Devil Inside by Ali Vali10 The Devil Series by Ali Vali

Published by: Bold Strokes Books

Synopsis

From Book 1: Brains, guts, and ruthless ambition should be enough to come out on top in any fight. Except when the battle is over love, all bets are off. Derby Cain Casey was groomed from birth to take the reins of the Casey family enterprises, which just happens to be one of the major crime organizations in New Orleans. Surviving by never turning away from a fight and knowing how to win at all costs, Cain is as careful with her heart as she is with her business – until she meets Emma Verde. The farm girl from Wisconsin puts a hit out on Cain’s heart and leads her down a dangerous road filled with great joy and devastating sorrow. The Devil Inside is the story of unexpected passion, a shattering betrayal, and the challenge of love put to the test.

Why I Love It

I know a mob boss doesn’t scream great mom, but I adore Cain and her family and watching them evolve. I will never forget how it’s fighting for her children that pulls Emma in so utterly. They may be breaking the law, but their family is the center of world. It’s also fun to see how their family grows over the course of the series.

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That was a list of the Top 10 Lesbian Mothers In Fiction by Laina Villeneuve.

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Check out Laina Villeneuve on Bella Books

 

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