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 Topic: Top 10 gay and lesbian novels
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Jade Rose  



Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 2
Interests: anything, basicall. Sleeping is good, but I don't get enough sleep.
Physical Location: here, on the computer, ignoring my homework

Posted: 3 Apr 2006, 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

if you're younger, around teen age, Alex Sanchez's Rainbow Boys, Rainbow High and Rainbow Road are good. I liked em
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grimke  



Joined: 17 May 2006
Posts: 1


Posted: 17 May 2006, 7:57 am    Post subject: Harry Hervey Reply with quote

For a possible biography of the gay writer Harry Hervey, born in Texas ca. 1900, world traveller, most associated with Savannah, GA, I'd be interested in hearing if anyone knows of information about him and his partner Carleton Hildreth, who may still be living.

Many thanks
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Paloma  



Joined: 09 Feb 2006
Posts: 35
Interests: I'm studying literature. So of course I'm interested in that. I am also interested in films and music. Well, Culture in general.
Physical Location: Roskilde - Denmark

Posted: 19 May 2006, 1:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Børge
Your name sounds a bit Danish, and if you are you might read Rollespil by Hans Olson. It is a teenage story though. It was the first gay novel I read. If you want some Danish literature you can read Når mænd elsker mænd og kvinder elsker kvinder. But if you are Danish you probably already know that one. It is a collection of short stories and excerpts from novels. And of course there are Drengen med Stjernekaster, Selvbiografi i rødt (which is written by Anne Carson, but I do not know the english title), Brødre, Min bror og hans bror, En særlig sommer. I would also recommend Maurice by E. M. Forster. And Kissing the Witch which is not really a novel, but a collection of fairy tales, but read it.
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bartdoard  



Joined: 26 Jun 2006
Posts: 2


Posted: 26 Jun 2006, 10:30 am    Post subject: Re: Top 10 gay and lesbian novels Reply with quote

Asking for 10 gay novels to read is like asking someone what is the best flavor of ice cream! ;-) everyone has their favorite, and it is an individual choice. nvrtheless, there are criteria for choosing a 'best in literature,' but again those criteria are themselves not unanimous.

point in case. a few yrs ago, the publshg triangle (which is mentioned by one of the othrs) assigned a grp of well respected and knowledgeable authors and literary experts to come up w/the 'best 100' g/l novels. they did, and the reading public was outraged, so much so that the publshg tri said 'ok, *you* tell us what *you* like.' readers created a 2nd list, and it had little/no overlap w/the 'expert's list.'

I believe that the point is that gays read to learn about themselves and to read about others like themself, and the literary quality of a work has little to do with which works gays prefer. This is not to say that the most popular gay works are of poor literay quality. as an analogy, consider which movies win oscars and which are the biggest box office hits. oscar-winning movies and the biggest box office hits are not necessarily one and the same.

that being said, if you're reading for lit quality, per se, you'll likely select diff works than if you want to read about othrs like yourself (I'm presuming that you are gay).

In my opinion, and I stress 'my opinion,' some of the landmark works include, but not limited to, The Front Runner (Warren), The Catch Trap (Bradley), The Persian Boy (Renault), The Charioteer (Renault), An Occassional Man (Barr/Fugate), Mark (Coleman) Common Sons (Donaghe), Maybe Tomorrow (Little) and works by Merrick and Hanson (early works were under a pseudoname). Some of these are out of print and could be found in a library or the web site ABE.

When we pick 'the best' works in any category/discipline, we tend to overlook recent contributions. So, I have done that. None on my list above are recent. In 10-20 yrs, some of the works published today will be considered landmark work. One writer mentioned At Swim, Two Boys. Personally, if all gay work was like that novel, I'd not read novels in the gay genre. ;-) Some of the up-and-coming young writers today include Mann, Quinn, Yates, Sonhnlein, Herrin....to name but a few. Stephenson, JM Wilson and J Keenan are others who should not be overlooked. Of course, there are names like White, Picano, Bram, and Morrden who'll unlikely go down in history as the fathers of the modern gay novel. And, I've probably unintentionally omitted several outstanding authors..... ;-\

Underscoring the popularity and widespread appeal of the above named works, I have personal info that there have been attempts to option some of these works by movie moguls/actors. In the gay community, the big question is what will be the 'next' BBM? Personally, I'd vote for Common Sons or The Catch Trap.

Hope this helps. As I implied, your unique tastes and what you have in mind (literary or popular) will determine your choices.

T R Bandy, Phd,
Phx, AZ

skraame wrote:
I am on the lookout for good books to read! I would be very pleased to recieve some top 10 rankings of gay and lesbian novels. Not only by English and US writers (but preferrably books that are translated into English).

Best regards,
Børge
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bartdoard  



Joined: 26 Jun 2006
Posts: 2


Posted: 27 Jun 2006, 11:28 am    Post subject: Re: Top Ten Gay Books Reply with quote

mbobanick wrote:
My favorites list would include;

Borrowed Time by Paul Monette
The Persian Boy by Mary Renault
The Year of Ice by Brian Malloy
Dream Boy by Jim Grimsley
The Object of My Affection by Stephen McCauley
The God in FLight by Laura Agiri
Giovanni's Room by James Baldwin

For fun:
Fag Hag by Robert Rodi
The Dreyfus Affair by Peter Lefcourt
My Blue Heaven by Joe Keenan

For teens I would recommend:

Rainbow Boys by Alex Sanchez
Geography Club by Brent Hartinger
Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan


ah!.....this is perhaps one of the best lists I've seen....contains a very wide perspective of gay works. if a person were to read this set, they'd get an excellent cross section of the gay genre. there are both early works (baldwin) and recent works (sanchez and hartinger). hats off to the contributor!!!

of particular note are works by sanchez and hartinger. while they are likely written to appeal to gay teens, something that is new in the gay genre, their appeal is universal.

To me, The God in Flight was the best gay romance ever penned.

I used to buy everything pub-ed by GMP, which after being bought by millivres/prowler, greatly reduced their annual output. Among notable authors pub-ed by GMP were Keegan and Hunt. Like Renault, Hunt does some historical fiction. Keegan, an aussie, is still 'churning out' novels and has a extenisive web site and newsletter; Keegan's books would fall into the action category. Some of his early works are quite unique in that he explores intimacy between men who are not in a gay setting, per se.
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Octo4poe  



Joined: 20 Nov 2009
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Interests: Reading & writing, traveling, language, cooking, walking.
Physical Location: San Francisco, CA

Posted: 21 Nov 2009, 11:34 am    Post subject: Re: Top 10 gay and lesbian novels Reply with quote

skraame wrote:
I am on the lookout for good books to read! I would be very pleased to recieve some top 10 rankings of gay and lesbian novels. Not only by English and US writers (but preferrably books that are translated into English).


If you have not already, and this goes for all folks searching for interesting queer writers, you should definitely check out Christopher Isherwood. He is the writer of novels, plays, and non-fiction travelogues and spiritual materials. His writing is incredible, his early representations of homosexuality are interesting, non-demonizing or sensationalizing, and his character portraits in prose are some of the best written in English.

Learn more about Ishwerood on this site's great article on his life and work:
http://www.glbtq.com/literature/isherwood_c.html

Also, check out an excerpt from one of Isherwood's greatest works: Christopher and His Kind, 1929-1939, and my response to the text. (autobiographical book that deals with his life and times in the 30's... amazing!):
http://octopoe.wordpress.com/2009/11/20/litpoe-christopher-isherwood-on-new-york/
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JayJay  



Joined: 27 Sep 2006
Posts: 79
Interests: gay history

Posted: 4 Dec 2009, 5:55 pm    Post subject: Re: Top 10 gay and lesbian novels Reply with quote

Have you seen the new film of *A Single Man*? It is one of my favorite novels. I am interested to see how Tom Ford has developed the book into a film. Apparently, he has made some changes, but it sounds wonderful. Not sure when it will be released widely.





Octo4poe wrote:
skraame wrote:
I am on the lookout for good books to read! I would be very pleased to recieve some top 10 rankings of gay and lesbian novels. Not only by English and US writers (but preferrably books that are translated into English).


If you have not already, and this goes for all folks searching for interesting queer writers, you should definitely check out Christopher Isherwood. He is the writer of novels, plays, and non-fiction travelogues and spiritual materials. His writing is incredible, his early representations of homosexuality are interesting, non-demonizing or sensationalizing, and his character portraits in prose are some of the best written in English.

Learn more about Ishwerood on this site's great article on his life and work:
http://www.glbtq.com/literature/isherwood_c.html

Also, check out an excerpt from one of Isherwood's greatest works: Christopher and His Kind, 1929-1939, and my response to the text. (autobiographical book that deals with his life and times in the 30's... amazing!):
http://octopoe.wordpress.com/2009/11/20/litpoe-christopher-isherwood-on-new-york/

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Octo4poe  



Joined: 20 Nov 2009
Posts: 4
Interests: Reading & writing, traveling, language, cooking, walking.
Physical Location: San Francisco, CA

Posted: 9 Dec 2009, 11:00 am    Post subject: Re: Top 10 gay and lesbian novels Reply with quote

JayJay wrote:
Have you seen the new film of *A Single Man*? It is one of my favorite novels. I am interested to see how Tom Ford has developed the book into a film. Apparently, he has made some changes, but it sounds wonderful. Not sure when it will be released widely.


I have not yet seen Tom Ford's film, A Single Man. I feel my love for Isherwood's writing may compel me to see it, even though I am usually negative about most literature to film adaptations. (Not to mention negative about most films in general - too expensive to see in a theater, and usually not very good.)

Isherwood's novel A Single Man is among his best works, and for anyone looking into a sort of "Top 10" experience with gay/lesbian/queer literature, you should definitely check this book out - certainly before you see the film at least! It looks like some things have been changed by Mr. Ford. While knowing that representations will change from novel to movie, I still get irked, especially if I view the change (which I will own as my opinion) as silly. My impression from the film's trailer is that Ford has certainly glamourized the visuals: The characters George and Charlotte both look much wealthier than they were represented in the book. Just a way for Mr. Ford to make his film "prettier", and thus more in line with his previous experience selling sex and ego as a fashion designer? I am holding out hope for a good film, independent as can be from Isherwood's novel.

I write a response to the discovery in my consciousness that Ford was making a film at all, let alone an adaptation of an Isherwood novel, in a post:
http://octopoe.wordpress.com/2009/12/03/the-book-to-movie-cringe/
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Octo4poe  



Joined: 20 Nov 2009
Posts: 4
Interests: Reading & writing, traveling, language, cooking, walking.
Physical Location: San Francisco, CA

Posted: 12 Feb 2010, 4:36 pm    Post subject: Re: Top 10 gay and lesbian novels Reply with quote

Octo4poe wrote:
JayJay wrote:
Have you seen the new film of *A Single Man*? It is one of my favorite novels. I am interested to see how Tom Ford has developed the book into a film. Apparently, he has made some changes, but it sounds wonderful. Not sure when it will be released widely.


I have not yet seen Tom Ford's film, A Single Man. I feel my love for Isherwood's writing may compel me to see it, even though I am usually negative about most literature to film adaptations. (Not to mention negative about most films in general - too expensive to see in a theater, and usually not very good.)

Isherwood's novel A Single Man is among his best works, and for anyone looking into a sort of "Top 10" experience with gay/lesbian/queer literature, you should definitely check this book out - certainly before you see the film at least! It looks like some things have been changed by Mr. Ford. While knowing that representations will change from novel to movie, I still get irked, especially if I view the change (which I will own as my opinion) as silly. My impression from the film's trailer is that Ford has certainly glamourized the visuals: The characters George and Charlotte both look much wealthier than they were represented in the book. Just a way for Mr. Ford to make his film "prettier", and thus more in line with his previous experience selling sex and ego as a fashion designer? I am holding out hope for a good film, independent as can be from Isherwood's novel.


Having finally seen Tom Ford's adaptation of A Single Man, I will admit that I was pleasantly surprised! The things I mentioned above sort of stand, in that the film is highly stylized, almost to the point where it loses a little credibility for me, in that George's whole world was a little too surreal. But, the technical elements of the production were sound, and the changes Ford made to the story in bringing it to the screen purposeful and fair. He captures the repressed sadness of Isherwood's novel well and manages to convey similar in his story, which is really all we could have asked for in this movie. I wrote a more detailed response in this post written after finally, begrudgingly almost, seeing the film: http://octopoe.wordpress.com/2010/02/12/a-pleasant-surprise-in-film-adaptation/
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