A Sapphic Convert [Lesbian romance and sex]

75 Best Lesbian Romance Novels to Read
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Lesbian fiction in English saw a huge explosion in interest with the advent of the dime-store or pulp fiction novel. Lesbian pulp fiction became its own distinct category of fiction in the s and 60s, [42] although a significant number of authors of this genre were men using either a male or female pen name.

The book sold two million copies in the first five years. The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith , considered the first lesbian novel with a happy ending, [a] was groundbreaking for being the first where neither of the two women has a nervous breakdown, dies tragically, faces a lonely and desolate future, commits suicide, or returns to being with a male. The paperback editions sold almost one million copies.

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In the s, parts of French author Violette leDuc 's novel Ravages were censored because they contained explicit lesbian passages. The deleted passages were published in the s as Therese and Isabelle and made into the film of same title. Jane Rule 's Desert of the Heart was able to break out of the pulp fiction category when it was published as a hardback by Macmillan Canada in Several publishers turned it down beforehand however, with one telling Rule, "If this book isn't pornographic, what's the point of printing it?

When publishing her novel Mrs. Stevens Hears the Mermaids Singing in , the novelist May Sarton feared that writing openly about lesbianism would lead to a diminution of the previously established value of her work. Stevens Hears the Mermaids Singing, " she said, "to write a novel about a woman homosexual who is not a sex maniac, a drunkard, a drug-taker, or in any way repulsive, to portray a homosexual who is neither pitiable nor disgusting, without sentimentality The first English contemporary novelist to come out as a lesbian was Maureen Duffy , whose book Microcosm explored the subcultures of lesbian bars.

The feminist movement in the late s and early s saw the development of a more politicized voice in lesbian literature and more mainstream acceptance of lesbian-themed literature that moved away from the 'tragic lesbian' theme that had dominated earlier works. A pioneering autobiographical novel of this era was the picaresque novel Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown , which became a national best-seller.

Terminology of homosexuality

Similarly, Joanna Russ 's novel The Female Man contains an alternative universe inhabited solely by lesbians. The s also saw the advent of feminist and LGBT publishing houses, such as Naiad Press , and literary magazines like Sinister Wisdom , [54] and Conditions [55] which published lesbian works. Adrienne Rich and Judy Grahn were important poets and essayists of the era. Patience and Sarah by Alma Routsong , published under the pen name "Isabel Miller" in , examined the historical confines of a romance between two 19th century women in a Boston Marriage.

After the birth of an explicitly gay and lesbian literature in the s, the following decades saw a tremendous rise in its production. While gay male novels had more cross-over appeal and often became mid-list sellers in mainstream publishing houses, lesbian literature, depending on smaller presses, developed smaller but 'respectable' audiences.

In the 80s and 90s, lesbian literature diversified into genre literature, including fantasy, mystery, science fiction, romance, graphic novels, and young adult. The influence of late twentieth century feminism and greater acceptance of LGBT work was also felt in Mexico, with the emergence of lesbian poets Nancy Cardenas , Magaly Alabau, Mercedes Roffe, and others.

In Argentina and Uruguay, Alejandra Pizarnik and Cristina Peri Rossi combined lesbian eroticism with artistic and sociopolitical concerns in their work. In the 21st century, lesbian literature has emerged as a genre in Arabic speaking countries, with some novels, like Ana Hiya Anti I Am You by Elham Mansour, achieving best-seller status. Meanwhile, English-language novels which include lesbian characters or relationships have continued to garner national awards and mainstream critical acclaim, like The Color Purple by Alice Walker , Bastard out of Carolina by Dorothy Allison , The Hours by Michael Cunningham , Fingersmith by Sarah Waters and Lost and Found by Carolyn Parkhurst.

As literature including lesbian characters and relationships has become more accepted in mainstream Western society, some writers and literary critics have questioned why there needs to be a separate category for lesbian literature at all. The novel tells the story of her relationship with another girl. Other young adult novels with lesbian characters and themes that were published during this time include Happy Endings Are All Alike by Sandra Scoppettone.

According to the author, it "barely got reviewed and when it did it wasn't good", unlike Scoppettone's novel about gay boys, which was better received. Frequent themes in books published during the s are that homosexuality is a "phase", or that there are no "happy endings" for gay people, and that they generally lead a difficult life. Throughout the s, there was, on average, a single young adult title per year dealing with gay issues. Although many of these early books were well written—and well reviewed—gay characters were at best a sidekick or foil for the straight protagonist and at worst a victim who would face violence, injury, or death fatal traffic accidents were commonplace.

Young protagonists who worried that they might be gay would invariably conclude that their same-sex attraction was simply a temporary stage in the journey toward heterosexual adulthood. Judy Blume has been cited as a catalyst in the s for an increase in inclusion of "taboo" topics in children's literature, which include homosexuality. Annie on My Mind by Nancy Garden tells the story of two high school girls who fall in love.

The novel, which has never been out of print, was a step forward for homosexuality in young adult literature. In the book, homosexuality is seen as something permanent and to be explored, not "fixed. In Kansas , a minister led a public burning of Annie on My Mind following a controversy after it was donated to a school library. During this decade the number of lesbian-themed young adult novels published rose. Nancy Garden published two novels with lesbian protagonists, Lark in the Morning and Good Moon Rising , and received positive sales and reviews. In , M. Kerr published Deliver Us From Evie , about a boy with a lesbian sister, which was well received by the public.

The s represented a turning point for young adult novels that explored lesbian issues, and since , a flood of such books has reached the market. The public attitude towards lesbian themes in young adult literature has grown more accepting. In , the School Library Journal included Annie on My Mind in its list of the top most influential books of the century. In the past, most books portrayed gay people as "living isolated lives, out of context with the reality of an amazingly active community.

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Danforth , tells the story of a year-old girl who is sent to a de-gaying camp in Montana. There are fewer books about female homosexuality than male homosexuality, [80] and even fewer books on bisexuality are published. Despite the fact that availability of books with teen lesbian and bisexual themes has increased since the s, books with non-white characters are still difficult to find. The first lesbian publisher devoted to publishing lesbian and feminist books was Daughters, Inc. Naiad Press , followed, which published the seminal lesbian romance novel Curious Wine by Katherine V.

Forrest and many other books. The press closed in after 31 years. Their catalog includes over titles of lesbian romance, lesbian mystery and erotica. In many cases, these presses were operated by authors who also published with the publication house, such as Barbara Wilson at Seal Press , which became part of the mainstream company Avalon Publishing , and Joan Drury at Spinsters Ink.

Bold Strokes Books, established in , publishes lesbian and gay male mystery, thrillers, sci-fi, adventure, and other LGBT genre books.

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Their catalog includes titles. Regal Crest Enterprises, established in , has a catalog currently exceeding works and they publish lesbian romance, lesbian mystery, some erotica, sci-fi, fantasy, and sagas. Some women's presses also produce lesbian fiction, such as Firebrand Books and Virago Press. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Subgenre of literature addressing lesbian themes. Lesbian feminists. Key issues. Actions and ideas.

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Main article: List of lesbian periodicals in the United States. See also: American lesbian literature in the early 20th century. Main article: List of lesbian fiction. LGBT portal. Retrieved on January 7, The Women's Review of Books. University of Pennsylvania Press. BBC Press Office. Retrieved 1 February Terry Castle. New York: Columbia University Press Harrington Lesbian Fiction Quarterly , 3 3 , Sept.

We Are Michael Field. The Guardian. Retrieved March 16, New York Public Library. Printing History. American Printing History Association. Retrieved 3 June The Daily Beast. The Journal of Asian Studies. Columbia University Press. Amy Lowell, American Modern. Amy Lowell Anew: A Biography. Preface reprinted at the author's website.

University of Illinois. Georgetown University. Reprinted at thefreelibrary.

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