Rita Mae Brown
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3.39 of 5 stars 3.39  ·  rating details  ·  1,763 ratings  ·  79 reviews
The novel Rita Mae Brown fans have been waiting for--her first novel about contemporary gay life in ten years. Brown is the bestselling author of such mysteries as Rest in Pieces and Wish You Were Here.
Published (first published 1993)
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Feb 16, 2014 Jess rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jess by: Sex and Gender in Lit class
This book hasn't aged well within the current sphere of LGBT politics, but I can imagine it made quite a splash when it came out. I must say, though, I haven't thoroughly enjoyed a character as much as I enjoy Mary Frazier Armstrong in a long time.

So, this book very narrowly missed a very Lifetime premise--woman believes she is dying, makes deathbed coming-out confessional, then whoops, not dying! And she has to deal with the aftermath--socially-conscious mothers, screw-up brothers, appalled ex-...more
Fiction for fun here. The story takes place in well-to-do Virginia society. The protagonist, a successful art gallery owner, is diagnosed with terminal cancer. She writes a series of letters to closest friends and family, divulging her innermost feelings--and the fact that she is gay. She tells each exactly what she thinks of them and their influences on her life. Then the hospital discovers the misdiagnosis. She will live, and must set right the repercussions with her high society mother, drunk...more
Freyja Vanadis
Frazier is misdiagnosed with late-stage lung cancer, so she writes letters to her family members and closest friends telling them exactly what she thinks and also coming out of the closet to them. And what a mess ensues! Her hateful mother Libby's true colors come shining through, as do her brother Carter's wife Laura's. Thankfully, her pussy-whipped father Frank finally grows a spine and leaves Libby, and the philandering Carter leaves Laura (albeit for another woman). That could have all made...more
Jude Arnold
This is a very delightful, funny, and sexy read! Not to be missed! Wow! And the author is just gorgeous!
This was my third time thru the Venus Envy. After the first time, I immediately read it over again the second time. It's that kind of book.
My favorite part is that the God, Jupiter, has an organ the size of the Empire State Building; and when plays it, rainbows fill the sky.
One would have to say Venus Envy is pro-tolerance.
Here, out of the mouth of the Goddess Venus, Herself:
"The purpose of th...more
This book is bad. I don't know what else to tell you. Venus Envy starts off so boring that you want to quit reading. GOOD NEWS IS that if you stick it out long enough to actually care about the characters, Rita Mae Brown punishes you by completely abandoning those characters and babbling about Greek mythology for ten chapters until the book ends. OK, that was actually bad news. I apologize.

I understood that this book is trying to tell you to be honest with people about who you are and what you...more
Aug 02, 2009 H.A. rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Maybe REALLY devoted fans of RMB.
Shelves: lgbt, families
I was kind of surprised how not good this book was. I mean... Rita Mae Brown! Setting aside the fact that the book hasn't aged well as far as the place of LBGTQ people in American society, it was still deeply flawed in spite of its promising premise. The characters were cardboard cutouts (especially the heroine's mother). It's full of little speeches put into various character's mouths that are all obviously coming from the writer. It's really preachy, and has some just plain WEIRD ideas about w...more
Shannon Wyss
A damning look at small-minded people in the South. I really enjoyed most of the book and was very interested in what was going to happen. Brown lost me at the end, though. The last section of the book takes a very strange twist that i couldn't get into. It's like Brown wanted to teach her main character a bunch of lessons and couldn't come up with any other way to do it in her allotted page limit set by a publisher. So she had to come up with a scenario that, to me, seemed like a total diversio...more
Carin Müller
Ich habe das Buch vor ungefähr 20 Jahren zum ersten Mal gelesen. Damals hat es mir schon unglaublich gut gefallen, aber erst jetzt (mit mehr Lebenserfahrung), kann ich die Dimensionen, die Browns Geschichte hat, erst so richtig erfassen. Früher fand ich den Roman schlicht unterhaltsam, heute haut er mich um. Die familiären Konflikte, die gesellschaftlichen Probleme - alles immer noch so aktuell wie damals. Ein ganz großer Wurf! Und grandios geschrieben.
This book starts out very funny & engaging. The setting gives an amusing peek into the subculture of the moneyed classes in the racist & homophobic southern US. Nearly every character is a stranger to her or his own self, living out a societally proscribed façade of a life. Our heroine, after a brush with death, overturns the anthill of her repressed life & family, with hilarious results. Then around the middle, the somewhat heavy-handed but bearable polemic begins. It’s been over a...more
Brandy Bacala
Rita Mae Brown, what were you thinking?! I was actually pissed off when I finished this book. What started off as boring, manages to shift into total nonsense in the last six chapters.

The characters are just so exaggerated and the plot is pretty dumb, but mostly I was bored by the pages and pages of pointless details. Why do I need to know about every flower in your goddamn garden or every brush stroke in a painting? I don’t. CLEARLY that less is more idea missed Brown. The ending is just ridic...more
I read this book after I read Rubyfruit Jungle. It made me really appreciate Rita Mae Brown as an author of lesbian fiction. Now it is my absolute favorite Rita Mae Brown book. Her characters are so funny and I think the mythological elements are quite quirky and playful. The plot had me laughing the entire time I was reading it.
Oct 26, 2007 Leesa rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: most women, especially the lesbians..
i found this book to laugh a loud funny! the premise is that a woman named fraiser is told she has a few days left to live...cancer and all and her business partner tells her to write letters to her family and dear friends and tell them what she thinks and feels. Fraiser goes all out with the letters and tells everyone what she thinks about them and that she is gay, a fact she had been hiding for years. Then the doctor comes back and says that they had the wrong chart and Fraiser will live after...more
I enjoyed the book except for the end. The last 40 pages are wonky and pick up a small thread throughout the book about this painting being alive. I could ignore the near-crazy moments Frazier had, up until the end with her near-death experience. That pushed me over the edge. Not one of RMB's finest :(
Shalyn Pineda
When I was 11, my sisters were reading this book and I remember them laughing hysterically. I wanted to read it when they were done, but they told me I couldn't. This was the first and only book that was ever censored for me, so I never forgot about it. I was always curious, but too embarrassed to look it up because I thought it must be super racy if they wouldn't let me read it. Finally I read it and I was pretty disappointed. I didn't expect it to be the best book I ever read, but I at least t...more
Ruby Hollyberry
One of my favorite books of all time. RMB's setting for all her books post-Rubyfruit Jungle, rich southerners, is blah take-it-or-leave-it for me. I don't read any other author using that setting. But it doesn't matter. The setting is just a convenience for her complete upheaval and setting-to-rights of the whole social universe, and in this book, the universe itself. Bravo! is all I can say. My experience of life is that there are plenty of real people just as poisonous as the bad guys in this...more
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Mar 06, 2010 Christina rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: NO ONE
Shelves: lgbt
I cannot rate this low enough! I hate giving it even one star. This book barely deserves the energy I am expending writing this review, but I write it to warn fellow readers to stay clear and not waste their time! Perhaps the absolute worst book I have ever read in my life, and that is saying a lot.

There is no point, the characters are faceless, meaningless, one-dimensional, and near-cliches. The themes are distracting and the story is outdated ... Maybe if it was better written I could get past...more
I read this a long time ago and remember liking it a lot. I always love Rita Mae Brown - she isn't a "Great Writer", but suits me just perfectly.

Just recently re-read and had to change my 'stars' - only two this time. Great concept for a story - character thinks she's dying and writes truth letters to folks and then finds out she's not dying. Takes place in Charlottesville, VA - a place I've lived and still live near. But the execution is clunky - and the visit with the gods at the end? Just DU...more
I've decided that even though Rita Mae Brown is a lesbian she also seems to be a misogynist and a really annoying proponent of southern democratic politics. The women in this book that she doesn't depict as sexually alluring are just plain evil. The men, poor ducks, are well meaning but unable to resist the feminine onslaught. The chapter on Greco-Roman gods and goddesses was pretty interesting, aside from the fact that she doubles down on her misogyny in regards to Juno. Not recommended.
I sort of wanted this to be a romp through the chaos that telling secrets can bring, and it never really was that. I expected to be driven along in an open-top car at full speed, with the wind in my hair, giggling at the scenery, but instead I was pulled along in a cart by one grumpy donkey. Also any book that describes sex with phrases like "hot pink vagina" and "instrument of love" does not tend to light my fire. Unless it's meant to be funny. Which I don't THINK this is.
The book had a great premise and was very entertaining. It did take an extremely bizarre detour, however, when the main character had the orgy with the Roman gods. I don't even know what to say about that part, but it was certainly original. It was the first book I read by Rita Mae Brown and honestly I've been disappointed by every other book of hers that I have read since then.
This started off strong, with a dying woman sending off final missives to her loved ones and then (SPOILER!) not dying. After that it just got trite and hackneyed, and a check of the copyright date explained why I felt the theme (gay woman coming out) seemed so dated. (1994 -- a lot has changed in 20 years!) I abandoned it to seek something better-written...
Ryan Mishap
Shit, I had certainly heard of the author through reading feminist books, so when I saw this at Goodwill, I picked it up.
Apparently everyone but me knew she wasn't a rablle-rouser anymore and this book is absurd. Greek Gods come to earth to teach a single professional woman how to get it on, as it were. Thanks for wasting my time, Rita.
The Lincoln Lawyer (Mickey Haller, #1) by Michael Connelly The Lincoln Lawyer was awesome! I loved it! The Lincoln Lawyer (Mickey Haller, #1) by Michael Connelly
What happens if you said what you really felt to all the important people in your life? this is the story of a woman who, thinking she is dying, comes out as a lesbian to everyone she knows. The wreckage and the freedom she feels complete the novel. this book is an interesting diversion. She's not a great writer, but she'll do :)
A good book overall about a very successful woman coming out as lesbian in the 1970's-ish. A little heavy on the philosophizing, a little dated, and then all of a sudden, 75 pages from the end it leaps into an orgy with (quite literally) Greek/Roman gods & goddesses, leaving all other story threads unresolved. Bizarre....
Feb 27, 2009 Angela rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Angela by: I wanted to read one of Brown's books after coming across review
Shelves: rita-mae-brown
This is the first book I have read by Brown. The first half of the book I found to be an entertaining & funny read. However the story slowed down after that & I did not find the second half to be anywhere close to as entertaining as the first. Overall it was a quick read & at least half was entertaining.
I brought this home from the library. I was hoping for an interesting read. It's very quick paced, and interesting. Well written. And easy to understand. I don't think it is a good plot or story. But unusual and strange and also well written in parts to make it worth the effort to read. Often quite funny.
Aradia V
As all of her books this was a fast read. I almost didn't make it past the first chapter though because she went on and on about golf.
Once past that it got quite amusing. The end was cool, as a witch, but to this day I'm still confused by the sudden mythological encounter. She's odd.
I picked this book up at the library today (December 15, 2007) and by the time I got to the fourth chapter I realized I had already read this book in college. It was okay the first time around but not worth reading a second time so I put it aside and started reading something else.
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Rita Mae Brown is a prolific American writer, most known for her mysteries and other novels (Rubyfruit Jungle). She is also an Emmy-nominated screenwriter.
More about Rita Mae Brown...
Rubyfruit Jungle Wish You Were Here (Mrs. Murphy, #1) Murder at Monticello (Mrs. Murphy #3) Murder, She Meowed (Mrs. Murphy #5) Rest in Pieces (Mrs. Murphy #2)

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“He unzipped his pants and his brains fell out.” 68 likes
“You have nothing to fear in life, not you, not anyone, because every bad thing you think can happen will- but not always in the form you imagine” 0 likes
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