No Way, They Were Gay?: Hidden Lives and Secret Loves

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"History" sounds really official. Like it's all fact. Like it's definitely what happened.

But that's not necessarily true. History was crafted by the people who recorded it. And sometimes, those historians were biased against, didn't see, or couldn't even imagine anyone different from themselves.

That means that history has often left out the stories of LGBTQIA+ people: men who loved men, women who loved women, people who loved without regard to gender, and people who lived outside gender boundaries. Historians have even censored the lives and loves of some of the world's most famous people, from William Shakespeare and Pharaoh Hatshepsut to Cary Grant and Eleanor Roosevelt.

Join author Lee Wind for this fascinating journey through primary sources--poetry, memoir, news clippings, and images of ancient artwork--to explore the hidden (and often surprising) Queer lives and loves of two dozen historical figures.

About the Author

Lee Wind is the founding blogger and publisher of I'm Here. I'm Queer. What The Hell Do I Read?, an award-winning website about books, culture, and empowerment for Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans, Questioning and Queer youth, and their Allies. He is the author of No Way, They Were Gay: Hidden Lives and Secret Loves, which won the ILA Children's and Young Adult's Book Award and was named a 2021 Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Book. Lee also works for IBPA and SCBWI. Visit him online at to see and share how #QueerHistoryIsEverywhere.

"Using primary sources to frame an alternative historical narrative, and asking readers to form their own conclusions, Wind sets out to fill some of those gaps, focusing primarily on the same-sex relationships or nonbinary identities of 12 well-known public figures."--Publishers Weekly

-- (5/3/2021 12:00:00 AM)

"[S]olidly written, well-documented and organized . . . a modest, well-intentioned contribution to gay history."--Booklist

-- (3/15/2021 12:00:00 AM)

"At a time where issues of social justice are often deemed either overinflated or 'solved, ' Lee Wind makes a powerful case that queer historical erasure is an ongoing issue."--Foreword Reviews

-- (3/1/2021 12:00:00 AM)

"Entertaining, illuminating, and an accessible antidote to dominant histories."--Kirkus Reviews

-- (2/15/2021 12:00:00 AM)

"This work serves not only to educate everyone who reads it, but also to help LGBT youth feel seen, to know people like them exist in the world, and to have role models that are among the most revered of leaders. Do I wish I'd had this in junior high school? You bet!" --Dr. Judy Grahn, author of Another Mother Tongue: Gay Words, Gay Worlds

-- (12/22/2020 12:00:00 AM)

Publisher: Zest Books (Tm)
Pub date: April 06, 2021
296 pages
Format: Paperback