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3.78  ·  Rating details ·  258 ratings  ·  46 reviews
Gaywyck," the first gay gothic romance, treads firmly in beloved territory, both honoring it and reinventing it. Classic in style, Vincent Virga creates a world as authentic as anything penned by DuMaurier, retaining the creaking ancestral mansion and mysterious and brooding master of the manor, while replacing the traditional damsel in distress with the young and handsome ...more
Paperback, 385 pages
Published December 1st 2000 by Alyson Books (first published 1980)
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Average rating 3.78  · 
Rating details
 ·  258 ratings  ·  46 reviews

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Lois Bujold
Feb 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: readers who like Gothic romance and meta humor
Recommended to Lois by: very old friend, long ago
Aha, there is the cover I remember from the early 80s...

This was a very interesting reread on a number of levels, 30 years on. I was first handed this book (in its original paperback edition) by the same female friend who had introduced me to slashfic, back when it was all on (gasp) paper, in tiny editions, before the internet had been invented. Thus primed, I assumed the author's name was a pseudonym for a female author writing a (very well written and closely observed) historical novel a
Nenia ☠️ Hecka Wicked ☠️ Campbell
A GAY gothic novel?


...does anyone know if there are gay bodice rippers floating around, preferably from the 70s and 80s? You know, for gay science? >:D
☙ percy ❧
"There are secrets in this house to bring down the stars, secrets to make Lucifer weep for having brought light to the likes of us."

words cannot DESCRIBE how much i A D O R E D this book so i don't think i can write a review tbh

why is one of the main threads of this book literally (view spoiler) itS SO
Mel Bossa
Dec 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
After deciding on not to pursue the career his father had planned for him, innocent Robert--too beautiful to be alive--is sent to work at Gaywyck, a large Long Island estate built in the fashion of an Antebellum southern mansion. The house is on a cliff looking down at the sea.

Robert is to catalogue all of the master's books in the vast library.

Now folks how's that for a setting?

The master is a young, gorgeous, sophisticated, cultivated, brooding and mysterious man named
Angela Bee Bee
May 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Building to a complicated messy ending, this story is beautiful. The MC is so lost in romance, it's hard to tell what is real or imagined.
If your a literary type, you'll love the constant references to classics, almost telling the story through other stories. Wuthering Heights was my first favorite book as a teen, and along with the opera and botanical references, I felt as if I was reading a poem of all my favorites combined.

Being a mom of twins also struck my heart;
"They tre
Sep 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book and wonder how I'd overlooked it for so long. It's a gothic romance taking placing in NYC and Long Island during Edward VII's reign and reads somewhat like a Victorian novel. A good bit of its language comes from that period. Plan on googling words and phrases. It has technical problems— see Erastes Review for further information. I agree with her complaints.

Gaywyck is a serious gothic romance and not your typical m/m sex romp. Very little is explicit. It's also a mystery. It became
Feb 01, 2016 rated it liked it
Actually...I'm not sure how to rate this. It's absolutely koo-koo, but...there's something about it. And God knows it's proved influential to this genre (even if no one wants to admit it ;-) ) The idea is intriguing, the execution is uneven, the writing is largely overwrought -- but that sort of works, given the subject matter and attempt at gothic period piece.

It's the sort of book I used to find inspirational in that it made me want to take some of the ideas and rewrite them from start to fin
Jun 05, 2018 marked it as to-read
Pre-review: the first gay gothic romance!????? I'm in!
Jan 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This could have been a bit shorter.
Not one of my favour but it's a work of art.
Very much like Jane Eyre for sure.
I will not recommend it because it's not an easy read nor one of the best.
But is good never the less.
The MC Robert read more like a damsel in distress than a young gentlemen but I Kind of liked him.
Mar 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
For me, the whole world of "gay" fiction, wherein the lead characters were two men in love, began with Gaywyck. To give you an idea of its importance in my life, I have gone through at least three paperback copies of the novel, and still don't have a viable extant version outside of my new e-book edition. So, for those guys of a certain age (like myself) who remember it, and wonder whether it's worth rereading, and for an entire couple of generations who may have never heard of it, here's Gaywyck.

May 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: gay-historical
Considered the “grandaddy of gay historical fiction” “Gaywyck” is certainly one of the first of its kind, and although not the most literary or beautifully written of the genre, it is essential reading and deserves more than a little respect that, despite being out of print, it is still being read and sought out after more than 20 years.

On the surface, it’s a familiar story: Robert Whyte does not want to conform to his father’s plans for him and through the good graces of a friend he obtains a
WHAT THE FUCK!!!!!!! DID I JUST READ?????????? wha t did i juST READ??????

oh my god istg this book was all innocent gay twink tears the first 2/3 of it, and the last 1/3 was??? mindblowingly fucked up like??? how did this happen? what is going on??? THIS CANT BE FOR REAL???

i gotta say,,,, this is the most problematique thing ive ever laid my eyes on but i cant say i wasnt entertained by it i have such mixed feelings abt this like it was one wild ride im just shook
Jul 19, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Think Jane Eyre, except with Jane as a troubled young man named Robert and you have Gaywyck. I bought this novel about three years ago and it is still one of my favorites. Like a true gothic romance, there is a brooding manor and its equally brooding master, a romance between the innocent protagonist and an older, tormented, love interest and of course, a dash of the supernatural.

Despite the truly engaging romance central to the genre, what I appreciate most about this is also a coming of age s
Elisa Rolle
When I started reading Gay Romance and browsing the few available titles (yes, you have to believe me, no longer than 5 years ago, the availability of Gay Romance novels was sorely lacking), Gaywyck was one of those titles that more than once appeared in my search results. But as for many other titles of that same period, late ’70-beginning of the ’80, I was scared to read it since I was not sure the author was daring enough to give his characters an happily ever after. Truth, having a novel end ...more
Feb 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
A lovely read, if a bit dense at times

Warning: This review might contain what some people consider SPOILERS.

Rating: 8/10

- The style of the writing is similar to the writing of the Gothic novels whose brooding tone this one imitates. The sentences are circuitous and rambling, and the overall effect is one of denseness and melancholy.
- All of the primary characters are well-formed and complex. There were times when I loved each of them and times when I disliked
Jan 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance, 2014
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book, I wish I'd read it twenty five years ago. Maybe it wasn't perfect, but it was very enjoyable. Okay, so there were several unnecessary elements, the one that really stands out is the nanny's background story. I didn't care about it and it added nothing to the actual story.
Virga is a novelist. He is not a horny housewife who wanted to write slash fiction or a syrupy, sweet romance. (although there were some very endearing moments in the book) His words are beautiful, his p
Jun 30, 2010 rated it really liked it
First of all, I think the covers available in market for this novel do a huge disservice to it as we are led by them to think this a trashy romance novel which is entirely not. Think of Jane Eyre and Rebecca or more recently , The House at Riverton or The Thirteenth Tale but in a gay version. If this makes you wonder if it is a erotic novel, think twice because this is a very classy book belonging to gothic genre written by an educated author - I am not sure but I think Vincent Virga is a pseudo ...more
Sep 04, 2014 marked it as maybe-later
This "blurb" is bullshit. All I know about this story is it comes in Gothic-flavor. Who is the LI? What sort of plotty stuff happens? What is the main source of conflict? What a useless commercial.

Also, I'm a dweeb for making a reference to lines from a fanfic I read yeesh.
Nov 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The book that inspired me to write my own Gothic (THE MASTER OF SEACLIFF). My work is as much an homage to Vincent Virga's classic as it is to Victoria Holt's masterpieces.
Vfields Don't touch my happy!
This was the first romance novel I ever read.
Jul 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: whoamance

If you love the sound of the ocean, sexual awakenings, murder plots, candles and late 19th century New York--this new Whoa!mance is just for you! The Grandfather of Queer Romance is a gothic stunner of sensual delights. Loosen your cravats m'lovelies this one gets good.
A.R. Jarvis
Dec 05, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: slash, historical
I felt like the enthusiasm and hype for this book made me expect too much from it? It was okay, but dull, I'm still not sure I understood everything that happened or why, and it was so. Slow. Even for the type of book it was imitating it was slow.
So the part where the cats were going to attack the cockatoo - was that just a bit of (bizarre) slap-stick whimsy, or a (clumsy) metaphor for our hero being surrounded by, and being closed in on by, evil and mystery?? Dammit, where's an English major when I need one?!
Maureen Crothall
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gaywyck feels like a combination of Jane Eyre, Rebecca, Wuthering Heights, and V.C. Andrews novels. I found it really entertaining. - It’s overwrought and very gothic, and the plot is ridiculous (but fits with the genre). All the standard warnings on AO3 would apply (Donough’s family is messed up, to say the least). There is a happy ending for our heroes (I was worried it’d end in tragedy for them at various points).
jenz x
Jul 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jenz-x-the-canon
the copy i have is an old paperback put out by avon books. i found this in a ratty old bookshop; i was still living under my parents' roof. likely, this was around the time i'd bought my [1st?:] copy of depheche's 'violator,' [but definitely before i got into the smiths:]. i was 14(ish?). the book was there, in a wire rack, for .50c. it was the cover that cinch'd the deal. not cuz it was 'implying' some relationship between the characters, with just a hand on shoulder. no, that wasn't it. i just ...more
May 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this book is unrelentingly delightful. it is a tropey gothic romance from the 80s, and I am without reservation giving it five stars; that's how unrelentingly delightful it is. it is at once a loving satire and a wholeheartedly genuine addition to the genre of gothic romance, except many of the characters are gay.

the writing style is very flowery, melodramatic, very nineteenth century pastiche, but I don't mean that in a negative way; I totally love flowery nineteenth century prose and found it
Aug 01, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: slashers, anyone who loves gay gothic romance
There is almost too much to say about this book. It is preposterous in its gothic purpleness, but it is also well written and entertaining.

To set the scene briefly: Robert Whyte, our troubled young hero, has spurned a career in law and has traveled to Gaywyck estate on Long Island, which is home to the fabulously wealthy Gaylord clan, of which Donough Gaylord is the sole remaining (very hot and very rich) member. Robert has been employed as the librarian.

Exhausted from the journey a
Carol March
Feb 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
read Gaywyck, by Vincent Virga, because of a mention in an article where it was described as the granddaddy of gay gothic fiction. First published in 1980, it has been out of print, but is now available both in paperback and Kindle versions. I was curious enough to order it, and once begun, found the book hard to down. The writing is dated, but lush and beautiful. I love tales told in the first person and the author manages it masterfully.
Robert Whyte is our guide through the troubled wor
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Vincent Virga has been called "America's foremost picture editor." He has researched, edited, and designed picture sections for more than 150 books, including Eyes of the Nation: A Visual History of the United States and the full-length photo essay The Eighties: Images of America. He is also the author of A Comfortable Corner. He is working on a third novel, Theatricals.
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