‘Tis the Season to Curl Up with a Good Book

by Darrell Scheidegger Jr.

Whether you are looking to stay indoors to avoid the wet weather, or hoping to avoid reminders of the upcoming inauguration, following are three books that will serve your need to escape; fiction, history, and coming out stories for you and your LGBT friends.

All three books are available from Amazon.com, BarnesAndNoble.com and local book stores.



The Second Half: A Gay American Football Story - by Scott Pomfret

While the subtitle suggests non-fiction, this is a romance novel. It tells the story of a young coach and star quarterback named Peyton and Brady, respectively (wink, wink), and their developing relationship, both on and off the field.

I will confess that the paragraphs describing the gridiron action did not interest me: “… first downs… dropped passes… turnovers… penalties…” YAWN. However, the parts recounting the bedroom action did: “He wrestled off Peyton’s clothes and drilled him like there was no tomorrow. Brady was a machine. A monster. Wet with sweat, which dropped from his brow to Peyton’s skin and seemed both corrosive and, somehow, like points of light. Brady conquered Peyton in all the right ways, until he was broken and tender and begging for more.” TOUCH DOWN!

You might be able to anticipate the inevitable injury, exposed secret, and misunderstanding, but the writing and story will keep you entertained.

Barbara Gittings: Gay Pioneer - by Tracy Baim

I wonder how many young gays and lesbians today would recognize the names of Barbara Gittings or Frank Kameny, or the Mattachine Society or Daughters of Bilitis, or ONE or The Ladder; the people, organizations, and publications that established what would eventually become the Gay Community.

The subtitle to this biography and history aptly uses the word pioneer, which means: “…a person or group that originates… a new line of thought…” Those early advocates and activists had to fight in a less forgiving society than we know today; relationships, careers, even lives were at stake when they ventured outside of the closet and into the daylight to make their stands.

This book is generously illustrated with photographs (most of them taken by Gittings’ partner of many years, Kay Lahusen), and they put the reader in the front row to witness those historic events. This book is a personal recollection of the gay movement seen through the eyes of Barbara Gittings.

Crooked Letter i: Coming Out In The South - edited by Connie Griffin

The phrase “coming out stories” may suggest a cliché; “Haven’t we heard and seen every possible scenario?” The short answer is, “No.”

The better answer is, “While there might be similarities and common themes, each is an individual experience, and worth the time to read, because no matter who is telling the story, the reader can find one or more connections to their own coming out (and if they haven’t yet come out, they can certainly recognize the fears and joys found in these stories).”

This collection is unique in that it is focused on the experiences of LGBT people growing up and living in the South. Southern sensibilities and the church play important parts in these stories. And if you tire of the sameness of certain characters that you have seen before, you won’t tire of the strength these writers show and share in their efforts to be authentic; a strength we all strive to exercise, regardless of where or how we live.

 

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