Terri Solomon is a feature writer and the Books Editor for Baltimore Gay Life, a LGBT community news publication. She lives with her wife in Baltimore, Maryland.
In Miriam N. Kotzin’s The Real Deal, readers encounter United States President Abe Featherman, a closeted gay Native American. He’s confronted with two immense personal fabrications, his sexuality and his race, and both lies are about to get him into trouble. Now that Election Day has passed and the dust is settling, political junkies can get a fictional fix in this critique of the current American political and social scene.
Luisita López Torregrosa is a foreign desk editor at a national paper when she meets Elizabeth Whitney, the woman who dominates most of the pages of Before the Rain (published August 2012). “She came out of nowhere,” writes Torregrosa, and had “poise, a guarded manner that permitted no intrusion.” Torregrosa is intrigued, even though Whitney is married at the time, and to a man.
In 2007, half a dozen friends began meeting regularly at each other’s houses to discuss a group-selected text. Today, the “Book Club” as it’s informally called has 20 members, all gay men with a diversity of ethnicity, religion and spirituality, and life experiences that contribute to “a rich conversation,” said book club member Bud Beehler.
Here at Gay Life we’ve selected five of our favorite recently published books that would be perfect for scintillating summer reading and deep discussion (or just a good laugh).
What do you call a play where “you are not supposed to feel you are watching a play”? According to Iron Crow Theatre’s Michele Minnick, it’s The Typographer’s Dream by Adam Bock. Minnick, who successfully directed last year’s Swimming in the Shallows, is back in the director’s chair again for another work by the acclaimed contemporary playwright.
On May 19 and 20, 200 Ride for the Feast cyclists will bike 140 miles from Ocean City, Md. to Baltimore, raising money to feed homebound persons with HIV/AIDS or breast cancer. Ride for the Feast is the largest annual fundraiser for Moveable Feast, according to Ted Blankenship, development director.
Hearts & Ears, a wellness and recovery center for the LGBT community in Baltimore, closed its doors on Pennsylvania Avenue in February and will reopen in May at a new Mt. Vernon location. The organization has been serving LGBT mental health consumers since Paula Lafferty founded it in 1998. Tony Wright, executive director of On Our Own of Baltimore, has been acting as temporary executive director for Hearts & Ears since December.
April has been National Poetry Month since 1996, when the Academy of American Poets initiated the celebration of poets and their writing. Gay Life recently spoke with two gay poets: David Bergman, professor of English and Cultural Studies at Towson University, and Reginald Harris, Poetry in the Branches Coordinator for Poet's House, a library and literary center in New York City.
Jeanette Winterson's recent memoir returns the scenes of her semi-autobiographical novel Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit (1985), published when Winterson was 25. Like the car crash you crane your neck to see, readers will once again encounter the harrowing insanity of her adoptive mother, Mrs. Winterson, "a flamboyant depressive; a woman who kept a revolver in the duster drawer, and the bullets in a tin of Pledge."