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The fascinating characters that roam across the pages of Emma Donoghue's stories have all gone astray: they are emigrants, runaways, drifters, lovers old and new. They are gold miners and counterfeiters, attorneys and slaves. They cross other borders too: those of race, law, sex, and sanity. They travel for love or money, incognito or under duress. With rich historical detail, the celebrated author of Room takes us from puritan Massachusetts to revolutionary New Jersey, antebellum Louisiana to the Toronto highway, lighting up four centuries of wanderings that have profound echoes in the present. Astray offers us a surprising and moving history for restless times.
A fire-eater, a voluptuous masseuse, and a naked game of tag in a forest at twilight - it could only be Best Lesbian Erotica 2007, the latest, boldest edition of the hottest lesbian erotica series in America. In Andrea Miller's "Heavenly Bodies," an adventurous woman sleeps her way through the zodiac, her twelve lovers including romantic Cancer, exhibitionist Leo, and an unforgettably raw, dominant Scorpio. Peggy Munson twists and teases the canon in "Subtexts," a hardcore butch-femme re-imagining of Little Red Riding Hood, Moby-Dick, and other tales that already sound dirty. Edited by award-winning author, adult film director, and sex educator Tristan Taormino, and selected and introduced by Emma Donoghue, these fearless stories will stir your senses and test your erotic boundaries.
From the author of the worldwide bestseller Room: "Her greatest achievement yet...Emma Donoghue shows more than range with FROG MUSIC--she shows genius." -- Darin Strauss, author of Half a LifeSummer of 1876: San Francisco is in the fierce grip of a record-breaking heat wave and a smallpox epidemic. Through the window of a railroad saloon, a young woman named Jenny Bonnet is shot dead. The survivor, her friend Blanche Beunon, is a French burlesque dancer. Over the next three days, she will risk everything to bring Jenny's murderer to justice--if he doesn't track her down first. The story Blanche struggles to piece together is one of free-love bohemians, desperate paupers, and arrogant millionaires; of jealous men, icy women, and damaged children. It's the secret life of Jenny herself, a notorious character who breaks the law every morning by getting dressed: a charmer as slippery as the frogs she hunts.In thrilling, cinematic style, FROG MUSIC digs up a long-forgotten, never-solved crime. Full of songs that migrated across the world, Emma Donoghue's lyrical tale of love and bloodshed among lowlifes captures the pulse of a boomtown like no other.
In the late '70's Irish convent school teenager Pen O'Grady fell in love with fellow student Cara Wall. Pen, an appealing heroine who is feisty yet vulnerable, and Cara, a free spirit who follows no path but her own, prove themselves to be up to the challenge of a love deemed unacceptable in Catholic Ireland. Their tumultuous relationship, full of love and passion and desire and flight, survives infidelities of all sorts--until they reach their late 20s, when Cara dies in a car accident. Through the elegant use of flashbacks intermingled with the harsh present-day reality of Cara's upcoming funeral, Pen reveals a sexy, beautifully written love story filled with the bittersweet reflections and emotional complexity of an intimate relationship. Above all, it is a graceful tale about coming to terms with loss.
A tale of grief and lust, frustration and hilarity, death and family<P> Penelope O'Grady and Cara Wall are risking disaster when, like teenagers in any intolerant time and place--here, a Dublin convent school in the late 1970s--they fall in love. Yet Cara, the free spirit, and Pen, the stoic, craft a bond so strong it seems as though nothing could sever it: not the bickering, not the secrets, not even Cara's infidelities.<P> But thirteen years on, a car crash kills Cara and rips the lid off Pen's world. Pen is still in the closet, teaching at her old school, living under the roof of Cara's gentle father, who thinks of her as his daughter's friend. How can she survive widowhood without even daring to claim the word? Over the course of one surreal week of bereavement, she is battered by memories that range from the humiliating, to the exalted, to the erotic, to the funny. It will take Pen all her intelligence and wit to sort through her tumultuous past with Cara, and all the nerve she can muster to start remaking her life.
A girl thought to be a boy steals her sister's skirt, while a boy thought to be a girl refuses to wear a cornflower blue dress. One boy's love of a soldier leads to the death of a stranger. The present takes a bittersweet journey into the past when a man revisits the summer school where he had "an accidental romance." And a forgotten mother writes a poignant letter to the teenage daughter she hasn't seen for fourteen years. Poised between the past and the future are the stories of now. In nontraditional narratives, short stories, and brief graphics, tales of anticipation and regret, eagerness and confusion present distinctively modern views of love, sexuality, and gender identification. Together, they reflect the vibrant possibilities available for young people learning to love others--and themselves--in today's multifaceted and quickly changing world.
From a much-admired literary critic, novelist, and scholar comes a book that illuminates the long-standing but little-known tradition of love between women in English and other Western literature from the 12th century to the 21st.
A delightful, old-fashioned love story with a uniquely twenty-first-century twist, Landing is a romantic comedy that explores the pleasures and sorrows of long-distance relationships-the kind millions of us now maintain mostly by plane, phone, and Internet.Síle is a stylish citizen of the new Dublin, a veteran flight attendant who's traveled the world. Jude is a twenty-five-year-old archivist, stubbornly attached to the tiny town of Ireland, Ontario, in which she was born and raised. On her first plane trip, Jude's and Síle's worlds touch and snag at Heathrow Airport. In the course of the next year, their lives, and those of their friends and families, will be drawn into a new, shaky orbit.This sparkling, lively story explores age-old questions: Does where you live matter more than who you live with? What would you give up for love, and would you be a fool to do so?
The bestselling author of Slammerkin vividly brings to life the Beau Monde of late eighteenth-century England, turning the private drama of three celebrated Londoners into a robust, full-bodied portrait of a world on the brink of revolution. In a time of looming war, of glittering spectacle and financial disasters, the wealthy liberals of the Whig Party work to topple a tyrannical prime minister and a lunatic king. Marriages and friendships stretch or break; political liaisons prove as dangerous as erotic ones; and everyone wears a mask. Will Eliza Farren, England's leading comedic actress, gain entry to that elite circle that calls itself the World? Can Lord Derby, the inventor of the horse race that bears his name, endure public mockery of his long, unconsummated courtship of the actress? Will Anne Damer, a sculptor and rumored Sapphist, be the cause of Eliza's fall from grace?This is a remakable novel in the tradition of the very best historical fiction.
A groundbreaking work of lesbian scholarship, Passions Between Women discovers and brings together for the first time stories of lesbian desires, acts, and identities from the Restoration to the beginning of the nineteenth century. Where previous historians have concluded that a combination of censorship and ignorance excluded lesbian experience from written history before our era, Emma Donoghue has decisively proved otherwise. She dispels the myth that seventeenth- and eighteenth-century lesbian culture was rarely registered in language and that lesbians of this period had no words with which to describe themselves. Far from being invisible, the figure of the woman who felt passion for women was a subject of confusion and contradiction: she could be put in a freak show as a "hermaphrodite," revered as a "romantic friend," or jailed as a "female husband." By examining a wealth of new medical, legal, and erotic source material, and rereading the classics of English literature, Emma Donoghue has uncovered narratives of an astonishing range of lesbian and bisexual identities in Britain between 1668 and 1801. Female pirates and spiritual mentors, chambermaids and queens, poets and prostitutes, country idylls and whipping clubs all take their place in her intriguing panorama of lesbian lives and revisionist and frankly sexual in its outlook, Passions Between Women boldly asserts that relationships between women were, more passionate than the "romantic friendships" oked by other scholarly works.
Set in the nineteenth century, Isabel Miller's classic lesbian novel traces the relationship between Patience White, an educated painter, and Sarah Dowling, a cross-dressing farmer, whose romantic bond does not sit well with the puritanical New England farming community in which they live. They choose to live together and love each other freely, even though they know of no precedents for their relationship; they must trust their own instincts and see beyond the disdain of their neighbors. Ultimately, they are forced to make life-changing decisions that depend on their courage and their commitment to one another.<P> First self-published in 1969 in an edition of one thousand copies, the author hand-sold the book on New York street corners; it garnered increasing attention to the point of receiving the American Library Association's first Gay Book Award in 1971. McGraw-Hill's version of the book a year later brought it to mainstream bookstores across the country.<P> Patience & Sarah is a historical romance whose drama was a touchstone for the burgeoning gay and women's activism of the late 1960s and early 1970s. It celebrates the joys of an uninhibited love between two strong women with a confident defiance that remains relevant today.
This collection contains the work of dozens of women poets who have nearly been forgotten by today's readers, as well as pieces by such household names as Emily Dickinson and Edna St. Vincent Millay. Many clearly identified themselves as lesbians, and others are largely thought of as women who had strong relationships with men. The introduction is a thoughtful essay on the changes in attitude which can be observed through the unfolding generations.
To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma as they learn and read and eat and sleep and play. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough...not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, one that relies on her young son's bravery and a lot of luck. What she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.Told entirely in the language of the energetic, pragmatic five-year-old Jack, ROOM is a celebration of resilience and the limitless bond between parent and child, a brilliantly executed novel about what it means to journey from one world to another.
To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma as they learn and read and eat and sleep and play. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits. Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough. . . not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, one that relies on her young son's bravery and a lot of luck. What she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work. Told entirely in the language of the energetic, pragmatic five-year-old Jack, ROOM is a celebration of resilience and the limitless bond between parent and child, a brilliantly executed novel about what it means to journey from one world to another. (Page numbers included)
Miss Emily "Fido" Faithfull is a "woman of business" and a spinster pioneer in the British women's movement, independent of mind but naively trusting of heart. Distracted from her cause by the sudden return of her once-dear friend, the unhappily wed Helen Codrington, Fido is swept up in the intimate details of Helen's failing marriage and obsessive affair with a young army officer. What begins as a loyal effort to help a friend explodes into a courtroom drama that rivals the Clinton affair -complete with stained clothing, accusations of adultery, counterclaims of rape, and a mysterious letter that could destroy more than one life.Based on a scandalous divorce case that gripped England in 1864, The Sealed Letter is a riveting, provocative drama of friends, lovers, and divorce, Victorian style.
Born to rough cloth in working-class London in 1748, Mary Saunders hungers for linen and lace. Her lust for a shiny red ribbon leads her to a life of prostitution at a young age, where she encounters a freedom unknown to virtuous young women. But a dangerous misstep sends her fleeing to Monmouth and the refuge of the middle-class household of Mrs. Jones, to become the seamstress her mother always expected her to be and to live the ordinary life of an ordinary girl. Although Mary becomes a close confidante of Mrs. Jones, her desire for a better life leads her back to prostitution. She remains true only to the three rules she learned on the streets of London: Never give up your liberty; Clothes make the woman; Clothes are the greatest lie ever told. In the end, it is clothes, their splendor and their deception, that lead Mary to disaster. Emma Donoghue's daring, sensually charged prose casts a new sheen on the squalor and glamour of eighteenth-century England. Accurate, masterfully written, and infused with themes that still bedevil us today, Slammerkin is historical fiction for all readers.
In this sparkling collection of nineteen stories, the bestselling author of Slammerkin returns to contemporary affairs, exposing the private dilemmas that result from some of our most public controversies. A man finds God and finally wants to father a child-only his wife is now forty-two years old. A coach's son discovers his sexuality on the football field. A repressed young woman finds liberation in her roommate's bizarre secret.Many of these stories involve animals and what they mean to us, or babies and whether to have them; some reimagine biblical plots in modern contexts. With characters old, young, straight, gay, and simply confused, Donoghue dazzles with her range and her ability to touch lightly but penetrate deeply into the human condition.
The story of two eccentric Victorian spinsters, Katherine Bradley and her niece Edith Cooper, poets and lovers, who wrote together under the name Michael Field.
Emma Donoghue vividly brings to life stories inspired by her discoveries of fascinating, hidden scraps of the past. Here an engraving of a woman giving birth to rabbits, a plague ballad, surgical case notes, theological pamphlets, and an articulated skeleton are ingeniously fleshed out into rollicking, full-bodied fictions. Whether she's spinning the tale of an English soldier tricked into marrying a dowdy spinster, a Victorian surgeon's attempts to "improve" women, a seventeenth-century Irish countess who ran away to Italy disguised as a man, or an "undead" murderess returning for the maid she left behind to be executed in her place, Emma Donoghue brings to her tales a colorful, elegant prose filled with the sights and smells and sounds of the period. She summons the ghosts of those men and women who counted for nothing in their own day and brings them to unforgettable life in fiction.
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