PRIDE at PPL: Fiction
Annotation:Peter, the only boy among four siblings born to Chinese immigrants, is convinced he is a girl and must fight the confines of a small town as well as the expectations of his parents to forge his own path into adulthood.
Annotation:From the incomparable David Rakoff, a poignant, beautiful, witty and wise novel in verse whose scope spans the 20th Century. David Rakoff, who died in 2012 at the age of 47, built a deserved reputation as one of the finest and funniest essayists of our time. This intricately woven novel, written with humour, sympathy and tenderness, proves him the master of an altogether different art form. (Goodreads).
Annotation:Anna Oh, a middle-age wife, mother and artist, divorces her husband after 27 years of marriage to marry Vivica, the Manhattan art dealer who orchestrated her professional success.
Annotation:2014 Stonewall Honor Book. A young Manhattan couple finds their world shaken when a gay doctor's passion for his new religious beliefs challenges theirs and questions the meaning of love. Jon Marans brings us this emotionally rich, contemporary story of betrayal and new beginnings.
Annotation:2012 Stonewall Honor Book. Just before breaking up with long-time boyfriend Taylor, John learns that Taylor has finished a time traveling machine and uses it to go back in time, where he tries to change the destinies of his father, sister, George W. Bush, and himself.
Annotation:Veteran British novelist Smith returns from 2006's Whitbread Award-winner The Accidental with a cheerful, sexy, disorienting take on the gender-shifting myths of Iphis (as told in Ovid's Metamorphoses). Fragile, rootless Anthea arrives at the Inverness, Scotland, offices of the slick, multibrand corporate behemoth Pure, where her up-and-coming sister Midge has gotten her a job. Raised on their grandfather's strange stories of rebellion and gender switching, the sisters undergo very different transformations when confronting Pure oblivion, the corporation's goal of being simultaneously ubiquitous and invisible. Drifting at work, Anthea meets kilt-clad graffiti artist Robin, who awakens destructive passions within her.
Annotation:The sudden and powerful attraction between a teenage boy and a summer guest at his parents' house on the Italian Riviera has a profound and lasting influence that will mark them both for a lifetime.
Annotation:2007 Stonewall Award Winner. A pensive, creative, and haunting novel that speaks expressly to the heart without sentimentality, by the author of Dancer from the Dance (1978), an important novel from the 1970s-'80s gay-lit renaissance.
Annotation:Set during the year preceding the Easter Uprising of 1916 -- Ireland's brave but fractured revolt against British rule -- At Swim, Two Boys is a tender, tragic love story and a brilliant depiction of people caught in the tide of history. Powerful and artful, and ten years in the writing, it is a masterwork from Jamie O'Neill.
Annotation:The Color Purple is the story of two sisters -- one a missionary to Africa and the other a child wife living in the South -- who remain loyal to one another across time, distance, and silence. Beautifully imagined and deeply compassionate, this classic American literature is rich with passion, pain, inspiration, and an indomitable love of life--Cover.
Annotation:This Booker Prize-shortlisted novel concerns an Irish trans woman named Patrick “Pussy” Braden who escapes from her abusive foster home and goes out to search both for herself and for the mother who gave her up.
Annotation:Transgender activist Leslie Feinberg sets this novel in pre-Stonewall New York City, and it’s an indelible examination of butch and femme culture that doubles as a great lesbian coming-of-age story.
Annotation:The coming-of-age story of Jess, the adopted daughter of a deeply religious woman, who grows up isolated and insulated in the north of England in the 1960's. Jess meets Melanie, and the two teenagers fall in love, greatly upsetting Jess's mother and her congregation.
Annotation:Rita Mae Brown wrote Rubyfruit Jungle decades before she became better known as for her cat-mystery novels. An autobiographical story, it’s widely considered to be the first lesbian coming-of-age novel.
Annotation:“Think of two people, living together day after day, year after year, in this small space, standing elbow to elbow cooking at the same small stove, squeezing past each other on the narrow stairs, shaving in front of the same small bathroom mirror, constantly jogging, jostling, bumping against each other’s bodies by mistake or on purpose, sensually, aggressively, awkwardly, impatiently, in rage or in love – think what deep though invisible tracks they must leave, everywhere, behind them!” Christopher Isherwood's classic tale of love and loss.
Annotation:Gore Vidal’s 1948 novel about a young all-American boy who discovers his homosexuality was one of the first mainstream literary novels to deal with the taboo in such an unapologetic and thoughtful way.
Annotation:Written in Wilde's characteristically dazzling manner, full of stinging epigrams and shrewd observations, the tale of Dorian Gray's moral disintegration caused something of a scandal when it first appeared in 1890. Wilde was attacked for his decadence and corrupting influence, and a few years later the book and the aesthetic/moral dilemma it presented became issues in the trials occasioned by Wilde's homosexual liaisons, trials that resulted in his imprisonment.
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A list that celebrates Pride in fiction, including Stonewall Award winners and other works of fiction that explore love, gender, sex, identity, and a whole myriad of rich, compelling, challenging, and deeply human stories. For more suggestions, ask at your local branch of PPL.