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Thursday, June 8, 2017

365 Groovy Books Worth Reading #169 - 178

In honor of LGBT Pride Month, today I continue my list of 365 Groovy Books Worth Reading featuring 10 gay authors (in random order). Click here for the previous 168 books - and click on a title for more information or to purchase a copy:

169) Dancer from the Dance (1978) by Andrew Holleran
This novel was one of the first among gay fiction to portray the party atmosphere of Fire Island while telling the story of a young man from the Midwest who leaves behind his "straight" life to immerse himself in the gay life of 1970s New York.

170) Sex Toys of the Gods (1997) by Christian McLaughlin
Michael Musto (The Village Voice) says "McLaughlin throws pop culture into a big, funny blender and serves up a perceptive showbiz epic" about a gay Beverly Hills housesitter who is befriended by his all-time favorite female rock star and her sexy husband.

171) Some Men Are Lookers (1997) by Ethan Mordden
This fourth and final volume in Mordden's Buddies cycle "follows the exploits of his best-loved characters - Dennis Savage, his lover, Little Kiwi, cowboy hunk Carlo, the bizarre, scheming 'elf-child' Cosgrove, and narrator Bud - as he lays bare the emotional landscape of the city within a city that is Gay Manhattan."

172) Babycakes (1984) by Armistead Maupin
This fourth book in Maupin's Tales of the City series was the first work of fiction to acknowledge the arrival of AIDS as it deals with Michael Tolliver's revelation of Jon Fielding's death from the disease. The continuing San Francisco saga also focuses on househusband Brian Hawkins and his ambitious wife Mary Ann Singelton as they decide to start a family.

173) Last Summer (2003) by Michael Thomas Ford
Ford's first novel is a "made-for-the-beach page-turner" (Booklist) "about a group of gay men looking for love, losing the past, and finding themselves in the bars and on the beaches of Provincetown."

174) Flesh and Blood (1995) by Michael Cunningham
From The New York Times Book Review: "Flesh and Blood is a sprawling, old-fashioned novel studded with characters, but the ones rendered most successfully are Billy (renamed Will once he escapes to college), whose homosexuality slowly and casually unfolds at the periphery of the story, and his mother, Mary, whose inexperience and inarticulate resentment never obscure her essential goodness."

175) Becoming a Man: Half a Life Story (1992) by Paul Monette
Awarded the 1992 National Book Award for Nonfiction and a Lambda Literary Award for Gay Men's Nonfiction, Monette's memoir tells of his life in the closet before coming out.

176) Friends and Lovers: Gay Men Write About the Families They Create (1995) edited by John Preston with Michael Lowenthal
After Preston died of complications from AIDS in 1994, Lowenthal finished editing this anthology of essays by some of America's top gay authors who write about the families they were born into and the ones they have created for themselves.

177) Maybe...Maybe Not (1998) by Ralf König (Translation by Jeff Krell)
This is the English translation of König's 1987 gay comic book, Der bewegte Mann, which was made into a 1994 German film starring Til Schweiger as a straight man who moves in with a gay man.

178) The Gay Decades: From Stonewall to the Present - The People and Events that Shaped Gay Lives (1992) by Leigh W. Rutledge
From the back cover: "This outrageously entertaining yet insightful chronicle of the years from 1969 to the present vividly describes watershed events in law, politics, the press, culture, the arts and the gay underground, along with the milestones in the lives of important gays, celebrities and pop icons." Here is an interesting entry from October 22, 1984: "The press has been trying to get into my pants for years. It's not that I have anything to hide. I just want to do my own thing." - Singer Barry Manilow, deflecting a question from People magazine about his sexual orientation

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