Queer books discussion

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Queer SF/fantasy/horror

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message 1: by Nancy (new)

Nancy Does anyone have any queer fantasy/SF/horror recommendations?

I've come across a few very good titles and added them to the group bookshelf.

Lynn Flewelling's Nightrunner series was fun, even though it was a very standard fantasy. The sexuality is subtle, particularly in the beginning, but I like how Flewelling doesn't dwell on the characters' sexuality and just makes it a very normal part of life.

The God Eaters by Jesse Hajicek is a very fast-paced, magical story with great characters.

Godmother Night by Rachel Pollack is a modern-day fairy tale that is beautiful and heartbreaking.

Thanks for your suggestions!


message 2: by Nancy (last edited May 20, 2008 06:29PM) (new)

Nancy If you don't mind reading on the computer, you can get The God Eaters here in its entirety for free:

http://chartreuse.studiowhippingboy.c...

Just click on the link at the top of the page.

I've tried reading Tanya Huff's Summon the Keeper, Smoke and Shadows, and one of her vampire books. I couldn't finish any of them, so won't be trying any more of her books.

Poppy Z. Brite is a great writer. I've read Lost Souls and a couple of her short story collections. Exquisite Corpse is on my shelf, but I'm afraid to read it.

I'll check out the others you mentioned.


message 3: by Nancy (new)

Nancy Actually, I read the online version first and enjoyed it so much that I ordered the book and promptly read it a second time.

I hope you enjoy the story as much as I did.

Should I read Exquisite Corpse or should I continue to be afraid? ;)




message 4: by Nancy (new)

Nancy All right, I'll read it. I shouldn't be such a wimp...lol!



message 5: by Elfscribe (new)

Elfscribe | 7 comments Hi Nancy,
My absolute favorite gay books in the fantasy genre is the Swordspoint series by Ellen Kushner. Instead of the typical pseudo-dark ages world of much fantasy, hers is more like 16th century England with a detailed world of politics and class. In her world bisexuality is the norm and nothing to be remarked upon. Her main characters are Richard St. Vier, the professional swordsman, and Alec, his caustic lover and former scholar who has a mysterious background. They have an unusual and very convincing relationship. The second book chronologically in the Series, Privilege of the Sword is set about 20 years later and includes a wonderful female protagonist, and the third (actually written 2nd, but third chronologically) is Fall of the Kings, co-written with Ellen Kushner's partner Delia Sherman. Fall of the Kings takes place maybe 70 years after Swordspoint and features a university setting and ancient history, along with another m/m couple, one of whom is Alec's son. I'd recommend reading Swordspoint first and if you like that, you'll like the others. Also more recent editions of Swordspoint have a series of short stories in the back, the best of which is "The Death of the Duke." All these books are beautifully written, with great characters, and engaging stories, with sexy m/m relationships and a couple of f/f ones.


message 6: by Tyler (new)

Tyler | 1 comments Christopher Rice-- the son of the infamous Anne Rice-- considers his work to be gay-themed thrillers. So, sort of horror...? A book like "The Snow Garden" definitely gets the adrenaline pumping at times.
Also, Anne Rice herself has written sadomasochistic homoerotica, I believe. It's published under a pseudonym.

On the topic of fantasy fiction, a friend of mine reads Mercedes Lackey's fiction, which I believe is essentially gay-themed fantasy. I'm not really into fantasy, however, and so I've never been able to bring myself to read Lackey.

As far as science fiction goes, I read Robert J. Sawyer's "Neanderthal Parallax" a few years ago and it sort of pertains. A lot of the characters are "bisexual".


message 7: by Nancy (new)

Nancy Elfscribe ~ I read some of the reviews, and it looks like people either love or hate Swordspoint, even among my friends. But I love your review and will add it to my list.

Tyler ~ I have A Density of Souls and picked it up mainly because of its setting in Louisiana. I wasn't aware he was Anne Rice's son until I looked him up. Is this a good introduction to his work?

Mercedes Lackey is an author I haven't tried yet even though I love fantasy. The sheer number of books/series she's written is rather intimidating. Maybe one of these days...

Robert Sawyer is another author I haven't tried yet. Are any of the bisexual characters female?

Woon-jung ~ People have told me that Imajica is his best work, but that I should start with something "lighter". Are the Books of Blood good?





message 8: by Judah (new)

Judah | 2 comments I'll second Woon-Jung's promotion of the Books of Wraethu by Storm Constantine. Possibly one of my all time favorite series, and the first trilogy has been published as a single compendium now. (actually, any of Constantine's books are pretty good, and almost all have LGBT characters)

I read Lackey's Magic's Pawn (I think that's what it's called) trilogy as a young teenager and enjoyed it then, however I've never been able to really get into her books as they seem kind of "simplistic" a lot of the time.

Imajica is supposed to be Barker's Ultimate Read, but I've never been able to finish it...despite getting 3/4's of the way through it 4 different times now! My personal favorite of his is Weaveworld, and Galilee is pretty swell as well! (as are the Great and Secret Show and it's sequel, Everville)


message 9: by Elfscribe (last edited May 22, 2008 01:26PM) (new)

Elfscribe | 7 comments Here are my opinions re: some of the books mentioned, realizing that everyone's tastes are different.

Re: Mercedes Lackey - she is amazingly prolific, but I think the penalty a writer sometimes pays for that is a lack of depth. So I agree with Cynjon. I think her Last Herald Mage series is the only one featuring a gay protagonist, but I could be wrong as I've only read that series. It had good points and some interesting characters. The main character doesn't realize he's gay for part of the first book and it causes him some difficulty, especially since his father is very afraid he might be and takes steps to prevent it. When he discovers what his leadings are, it solves some mental trauma for him. Those books were ground-breaking in that they were published, when? in the late 1980s when a gay character was more unusual than now. The three in the series are: Magic's Pawn, Magic's Promise, and Magic's Price. They were a fun read, but I found them rather typical sword and sorcery fantasy fare. I preferred Lynn Flewelling's Nightrunner series, but even that, for me, didn't hold a candle to Swordspoint. But certainly, everyone wouldn't like Swordspoint.

I have really enjoyed the Wraeththu series by Storm Constantine about a race of hermaphroditic beings who take over the world. They look like gorgeous goth boys and having sexual communion is part of the culture. I found the books to be incredibly imaginative. And Storm does write beautifully. I particularly liked the first part of Book 2 (I can never remember their names I think it's Bewitchments of Love and Hate)which has an amazing coming of age story in it. Having said that, I also disliked aspects of them and found them rather uneven. The themes of betrayal and obsession sometimes got a bit much and often the wonderful promise of the first part of one of the books wasn't borne out in the second part. But still fascinating enough that I'm giving them another read. There's more of my two cents.
Cheers,


message 10: by Elfscribe (new)

Elfscribe | 7 comments Oh and thanks Nancy for the link to The God Eaters. I checked it out and read first chapter. Looks great - will probably order it.


message 11: by Erik (new)

Erik | 5 comments Check out the website http://www.glbtfantasy.com also. I used to write reviews for it. It's a great resource but doesn't really include the horror genre.

Robert Sawyer's Neanderthal Parallax trilogy is great, and the bisexuality is throughout the neanderthal culture, so both women and men.

I adore Clive Barker and I've read pretty much everything he's written. "Imajica" is my very favorite, but I'd suggest "Galilee" or "Sacrament" for something more accessible and queer.

And for gay Asian lit that is also sci fi, I'd suggest "China Mountain Zhang" by Maureen McHugh and the manga "A, A Prime" by Hagio Moto.


message 12: by Nancy (last edited May 26, 2008 02:22PM) (new)

Nancy I was trying to think if I've read anything with gay Asian characters and completely forgot about China Mountain Zhang. If I remember correctly, Zhang is American-born Chinese and his mother is Hispanic. Each loosely-connected story features a different character and takes place in different locations. Not one of my favorite books, but still a very good read.


message 13: by Julia (new)

Julia (juliawatson) | 3 comments I'm loving the Buffy season 8 comics as well. I find the writing a little infuriating at times, but it is unfailingly good.


message 14: by Judah (new)

Judah | 2 comments I'm "thirding" the promotion of Buffy season 8! I finished the latest issue less than 20 minutes ago, and find myself just rather in awe of Whedon's capacity for understated humor.


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