Every person has a story worth reading if you just allowed them to open up like a book. And while some of us may never have our tales on the shelf, there are plenty of celebrities out there who’ve been brave enough to sit down and write theirs for us to take in, connect to and be inspired by. The following is a list of amazing LGBTQ celebrity memoirs that take the cake when it comes to being truly remarkable. From their incredible journeys to how they make it all make sense within some 300 pages, these celebrity memoirs will surely brighten your day and push you towards amazing things.

Over the Top: A Raw Journey to Self-Love - Johnathan Van Ness

Netflix made waves when they decided to bring back Queer Eye and introduce us to a whole new Fab Five and honey, we’d be lying if we didn’t say that right away Johnathan Van Ness stood out to everyone who watched. From serving Jesus at Pride lewks to his ecstatic personality, we were all charmed beyond belief. So it was shocking, to say the least when his memoir wasn’t all unicorns and rainbows. JVN has lived a life and he was brave enough to let us all in on what it entailed; addiction, cheating, an HIV diagnosis - and that’s just the tip of the iceberg as he sheds light on his darkest days and proves that you can truly rise from the bottom to reach the tip-top of fabulosity.

Party of One - Dave Holmes

For those who didn’t grow up in the late ‘90s/early ‘00s, Dave Holmes came in second when MTV had their “Wanna Be a VJ” contest, but he was so freaking good at it that they gave him a job anyway. And yes, this book does give you all the deets about that chapter in his life, but there’s a lot more. So you just graze over that and dig in deep when it comes to what it was like for Holmes to grow up gay in the Midwest, the challenges he faced in college, and more as he delivers his life fittingly to a soundtrack as each chapter is represented by a song. Makes you think of what songs you’d place over your life.

I’m Just a Person - Tig Notaro

You know how you always think you’d want to trade places with a celebrity? Yeah, not so much with Tig Notaro because frankly, I don’t think any of us would be able to match her strength. She almost died of an infection, lost her mother, and was diagnosed with breast cancer all within a small time frame. See, we told you - you are not as strong as this woman. In the end, I’m Just a Person’s daunting moments come across in true Tig fashion throughout thanks to her dry and quick wit teaching us that you just have to laugh sometimes.

Dispatches from the Edge: A Memoir of War, Disasters, and Survival - Anderson Cooper

For real, I was obsessed with the news in high school just because Anderson Cooper was hot AF, but once you strip away those baby blues and his silver fox demeanor you get one of the smartest most compelling human beings to ever grace us with his presence. This book showcases not only Anderson’s life as the son of the late Gloria Vanderbilt, his brother’s suicide and how he came to be the face of CNN but also takes you to places most of us would never know like the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and a war zone in the Middle East. He goes back and forth between his anecdotes and the reality of some of the craziest places the news has ever taken him with the underlying message of you only have one life, what are you going to do with it?

Karamo: My Story of Embracing Purpose, Healing, and Hope - Karamo Brown

If you think Karamo Brown’s book would not make you cry, then you clearly have never watched one episode of Queer Eye. The battered relationship with his father, addiction that almost left him dead, the surprise of fatherhood - every ounce of Brown’s life up until now is laid out with honesty and heart and he teaches you the lessons those moments have taught him along the way; perseverance, inner strength, and the hustle.

I Might Regret This: Essays, Drawings, Vulnerabilities, and Other Stuff - Abbi Jacobson

Broad City fans know Abbi’s character but this book is a chance to know who she is as a human as she finds herself heartbroken over the first woman to crush her, and a need to be on the west coast for business. Oh, and all of this happened just as they were wrapping the final season of her hit Comedy Central series by the way. So if you’ve ever been broken up about someone, this will inspire you to move forward, take a little time (in her case two weeks) and hit the road.
October 25, 2019 — Andrew Christian
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