Resources, including Discussion Questions, for Selected LGBTQ+ and General Literature
This Book Resources page features background material, including discussion questions, for selected 🌈LGBTQ+ and general works of literature, both contemporary and classic. Although this website is completely independent, these materials are for two book groups that I’m happy to be part of, one LGBTQ+ and the other general; with thanks to Tash and Beverly for their contributions! Hope this information will be of interest for your own discussion group (tips for starting one). Each of these diverse titles inspired lively conversations. This page will expand frequently to include additional novels, non-fiction, plays, and poetry. Also, I have recommendations for LGBTQ+ Literature, LGBTQ+ Cinema, and general Film. COMING SOON: a blog post with tips for compiling resources for any book, including links to Wikipedia, author’s website, plot summary – perhaps with a “spoilers” warning!, background, video interviews with the author, film/theater adaptations, discussion questions, more. PLEASE NOTE that I do not link to any paywall (paid subscriber-only) articles, even those at the exceptional New York Times; you can find those links at the bottom section of Wikipedia entries.
PLEASE NOTE that I am currently (August 2021) making this ever-growing page more concise, and user-friendly, by integrating the long “http…” link behind the link name, rather than showing it. You can always select the underlying link by right-clicking on the link name and then selecting “copy link.” All established linked resources are retained, and a few new ones added.
- André Aciman, Call Me By Your Name (🌈LGBTQ+ Novel, love affair of two American men in 1950s Italy)
- John Boyne, The Heart’s Invisible Furies (🌈LGBTQ+ Novel, 70 years of modern Irish history through the life of a gay ‘everyman’)
- Bill Bryson, A Walk in the Woods (General Non-Fiction, memoir about the complicated friendship of two middle-aged men hiking the Appalachian Trail)
- Bernardine Evaristo, Girl, Woman, Other (🌈LGBTQ+ and General Fiction, novel about the intersecting lives of a dozen diverse British women of color, of all orientations)
- Gillian Flynn, Gone Girl (General Fiction, a brilliantly twisty thriller about marriage, and murder)
- Yaa Gyasi, Homegoing (General Fiction, about eight generations of a Black family, from slavery until today; contains a poignant male-male relationship in the early chapter “Quey”)
- Patrcia Highsmith, The Talented Mr. Ripley (🌈LGBTQ+ Fiction, thriller about an irresistible sociopath with many talents)
- NEW! Alan Hollinghurst, The Sparsholt Affair (🌈LGBTQ+ Fiction, Britain’s evolving LGBTQ+ attitudes from the 1940s to today, through the story of a gay father and son)
- Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth (General Fiction, children’s fantasy adventure novel; illustrated by Jules Feiffer)
- Christina Baker Kline, A Piece of the World (General Fiction, novel about the secluded, but emotionally eventful, life of the woman who inspired Andrew Wyeth’s iconic 1948 painting, “Christina’s World”)
- NEW! Larry Kramer (🌈LGBTQ+ author & activist)
- Matthew Lopez, The Inheritance (🌈LGBTQ+ Play, experiences of contemporary NYC gay men, a reimagining of Howards End, exploring themes of resilience, class divisions, and the meaning of home)
- Audre Lorde, Zami: A New Spelling of My Name (🌈LGBTQ+ Autobiographical Fiction, growing up in 1950s Harlem and becoming, in her own words, a “Black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet”)
- Emily St. John Mandel, The Glass Hotel (General Fiction, experimental thriller about two siblings trapped in a pyramid scheme)
- Paul Monette, Becoming a Man: Half a Life Story (🌈LGBTQ+ Non-Fiction, memoir that explores coming out in the 1960s at Yale, and beyond)
- Cherríe Moraga, Native Country of the Heart, a Memoir (🌈LGBTQ+ Non-Fiction, relationship of a lesbian Latina author/activist and her mother who has Alzheimer’s)
- Chinelo Okparanta, Under the Udala Trees (🌈LGBTQ+ Novel, a young lesbian comes of age in war-torn 1960s Nigeria)
- Marcel Proust, In Search of Lost Time (aka Remembrance of Things Past) (🌈LGBTQ+ Novel, intimate epic of the narrator’s experiences, of memory and desire, in turn of the 20th century French society)
- Andy Weir, The Martian (General Fiction, realistic SF novel about an astronaut marooned on Mars)
- Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass (1855 “short” first version of 12 poems) (🌈LGBTQ+ Poetry, the foundation of modern verse, its visionary inclusiveness remains inspiring)
* André Aciman, Call Me By Your Name (🌈LGBTQ+ Novel)
The love affair of two American men in 1950s Italy.
- Call Me By Your Name – Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Call_Me_by_Your_Name_(novel)
- André Aciman’s website. https://findmenovel.com/#findme
- André Aciman resources, from his publisher. https://us.macmillan.com/author/andreaciman/
- Atlantic article about Call Me By Your Name (and the sequel, Find Me). https://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2019/11/andre-aciman-talks-find-me-and-call-me-your-name/601060/
- Time magazine article about Call Me By Your name and its sequel). https://time.com/5710568/find-me-call-me-by-your-name-sequel/
- Publisher’s Reading Guide and Discussion Questions. https://images.macmillan.com/folio-assets/rgg-guides/9780312426781RGG.pdf
- Thanks, Tash!
* John Boyne, The Heart’s Invisible Furies (🌈LGBTQ+ Novel)
70 years of modern Irish history as lived by a gay man.
- John Boyne’s Website. https://johnboyne.com/
- John Boyne (Wikipedia). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Boyne
- LitLovers guide, including a brief summary. https://www.litlovers.com/reading-guides/fiction/11065-hearts-invisible-furies-boyne
- BookRags detailed summary (free version). http://www.bookrags.com/studyguide-the-hearts-invisible-furies/#gsc.tab=0
- Review from The Guardian (February 18, 2017). https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/feb/18/the-hearts-invisible-furies-by-john-boyne-review-sin-and-torment-in-catholic-ireland
- Ireland (Wikipedia). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ireland
- LGBTQ+ Culture in Ireland (Wikipedia). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGBT_culture_in_Ireland
- Latest LGBTQ+ News from Ireland (IrishCentral). https://www.irishcentral.com/topic/lgbt
- The Heart’s Invisible Furies – Discussion Questions. https://www.litlovers.com/reading-guides/fiction/11065-hearts-invisible-furies-boyne?start=3
- Boyne’s title comes from a quotation by political theorist Hannah Arendt, referring to gay poet W.H. Auden (1970 photo).
- Boyne dedicated this novel to John Irving, author of the in some ways comparable, The World According to Garp (1976). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_World_According_to_Garp
* Bill Bryson, A Walk in the Woods (General Non-Fiction)
Memoir about the complicated friendship of two middle-aged men hiking the Appalachian Trail.
- A Walk in the Woods (book), 1998 book by Bill Bryson – Wikipedia
- A Walk in the Woods (film), 2015 film by Ken Kwapis, based on Bryson’s book – Wikipedia
- Resources (websites, interviews, videos, audio, images), about the Appalachian Trail, Bill Bryson, this book, and more.
- Bill Bryson – Publisher’s website.
- A Walk in the Woods – Discussion Questions.
* Bernardine Evaristo, Girl, Woman, Other (🌈LGBTQ+ and General Fiction)
Intersecting lives of a dozen diverse British women of color, of all orientations.
- Bernardine Evaristo – Wikipedia
- Girl, Woman, Other – Wikipedia
- Bernardine Evaristo’s personal website
- Bernardine Evaristo: The Waterstones Interview (video) from October 17, 2019, after winning the Booker Prize (she refers to her novel as “fusion fiction”). NOTE: For more interviews, search on: Bernardine Evaristo videos
- Girl, Woman, Other – detailed synopsis – BookRags
- Character Map for the novel’s many interconnected relationships by Mona Chalabi, and applauded by Evaristo on Twitter
- NEW! (added June 16) Character list with brief descriptions, discussion topics, and additional resources – marmaladeandmustardseed.com.
- Girl, Woman, Other – many readers’ comments – Goodreads
- Girl, Woman, Other review – The Guardian
- Girl, Woman, Other review – NPR
- Girl, Woman, Other – discussion questions – BookBrowse
- Girl, Woman, Other – discussion questions – Review and Book Club Questions
- Girl, Woman, Other (citation from the Booker Prize) – also, the Booker Prize site offers many readers’ guides for the dozens of titles they’ve nominated since 2010, including a Girl, Woman, Other guide
- Bernardine Evaristo film and television credits – IMDb.
* Gillian Flynn, Gone Girl (General Fiction)
Brilliantly twisty thriller about marriage, and murder.
- Gone Girl (novel), a 2012 thriller novel by American writer Gillian Flynn – Wikipedia
- Gone Girl (film), a 2014 film based on the novel, from director David Fincher – Wikipedia
- Gillian Flynn’s website.
- Gone Girl – Reading Group Discussion Questions.
- Gillian Flynn film and television credits – IMDb.
* Yaa Gyasi, Homegoing (General Fiction)
Novel about eight generations of a Black family, from slavery until today; contains a poignant male-male relationship in the early chapter “Quey.”
- Wikipedia (includes a summary, a genealogy map: the story spans eight generations, and more resources) – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homegoing_(Gyasi_novel)
- Publisher’s website – https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/533857/homegoing-by-yaa-gyasi/9781101947135/
- Reader’s Guide with Discussion Questions – https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/533857/homegoing-by-yaa-gyasi/9781101947135/readers-guide/
- Brief Summary plus a Detailed Summary, Themes, Characters, more (LitCharts) – https://www.litcharts.com/lit/homegoing
- Goodreads (includes readers’ reviews) – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27071490-homegoing
- Review (The New Yorker: it notes that “Homegoing‘s title comes from an old African-American belief that death allowed an enslaved person’s spirit to travel back to Africa) – https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/05/30/yaa-gyasis-homegoing
- Review (NPR) – https://www.npr.org/2016/06/07/480477931/homegoing-is-a-sprawling-epic-brimming-with-compassion
- Homegoing Book Guide, with discussion questions and additional resources. https://www.marmaladeandmustardseed.com/bookguidesblog/homegoing
* Patricia Highsmith, The Talented Mr. Ripley (🌈LGBTQ+ Fiction)
Thriller about an irresistible sociopath with many talents.
- Patricia Highsmith – Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patricia_Highsmith
- The Talented Mr. Ripley – Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Talented_Mr._Ripley
- Tom Ripley character across five novels, 1955 to 1991, and several adaptations for film, television, and radio – Wikipedia
- Patricia Highsmith’s film and television credits – IMDb. https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0383604/
- In-depth article on the novel and 1999 film, by Haley Mlotek in The Ringer, December 23, 2019. https://www.theringer.com/movies/2019/12/23/21034364/talented-mr-ripley-anniversary-20-years
- Discussion questions for the novel – GradeSaver. https://www.gradesaver.com/the-talented-mr-ripley/study-guide/essay-questions
- Discussion questions (for the 1999 film; some also apply to the novel) – GradeSaver. https://www.gradesaver.com/the-talented-mr-ripley-film/study-guide/essay-questions
- Psychopathy / Sociopathy – Wikipedia
- NOTE: Regarding another classic Highsmith thriller – Strangers on a Train (Alfred Hitchcock, 1951) shot-by-shot analysis of a sequence, including a comparison with Patricia Highsmith’s original novel and the screenplay by Raymond Chandler and Czenzi Ormonde. (This page brings together my love for both literature and film.)
- Trailers for the three film versions of The Talented Mr. Ripley:
- Purple Noon (1960, directed by René Clément, starring Alain Delon) – trailer. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tWnvLNTzt-k
- The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999, directed by Anthony Minghella, starring Matt Damon) – trailer. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4e-Si4oGEw
- Naan (“Criminal”) (2012 – Indian Tamil-language adaptation, directed by Jeeva Shankar) – trailer. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcuqzxS-0VM
- NEW! (added August 19, 2021) – NOW IN PRODUCTION, a new series entitled Ripley, from Showtime. The first season, of eight episodes, is written and directed by Steven Zaillian (Schindler’s List), and starring Andrew Scott in the title role.
- NEW (added July 15, 2021) – Video interview with Highsmith (20 minutes) from May 18, 1978, Thames TV.
- NEW! (added July 15, 2021) – BIOGRAPHY: The Talented Miss Highsmith: The Secret Life and Serious Art of Patricia Highsmith, by Joan Schenkar. Winner of the 2010 Lambda Literary Award. From Amazon.com (PLEASE NOTE that my Amazon Associate link is below, bottom/left of the page): “Patricia Highsmith, one of the great writers of twentieth-century American fiction, had a life as darkly compelling as that of her favorite “hero-criminal,” the talented Tom Ripley. Joan Schenkar maps out this richly bizarre life from her birth in Texas to Hitchcock’s filming of her first novel, Strangers on a Train, to her long, strange self-exile in Europe. We see her as a secret writer for the comics [including Marvel], a brilliant creator of disturbing fictions, and an erotic predator with dozens of women (and a few good men) on her love list. The Talented Miss Highsmith is the first literary biography with access to Highsmith’s whole story: her closest friends, her oeuvre, her archives. It’s a compulsive page-turner unlike any other, a book worthy of Highsmith herself.”
- LGBTQ+ Genre Literature – there is a long, fascinating tradition of LGBTQ+ Suspense/Mystery fiction, as well as other major genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror.
*Alan Hollinghurst, The Sparsholt Affair (🌈LGBTQ+ Fiction)
Britain’s evolving LGBTQ+ attitudes from the 1940s to today, through the story of a gay father and son.
- Alan Hollinghurst – from Wikipedia.
- The Sparsholt Affair, including summary – from Wikipedia
- NEW! (added September 15, 2021) – The Sparsholt Affair, review and named “Book of the Day” by Alex Preston, from The Guardian, September 25, 2017.
- The Sparsholt Affair, review by James Lasdun, from The Guardian, October 5, 2017.
- The Sparsholt Affair, review by Heller McAlpin, from NPR, March 17, 2018.
- The Sparsholt Affair, interview with Hollinghurst by Christopher Bollen, from Interview Magazine, March 9, 2018.
- The Sparsholt Affair, readers’ comments from Goodreads.
- The Sparsholt Affair, discussion questions, from the publisher.
- Video (54 mins.) of Alan Hollinghurst discussing The Sparsholt Affair, at Politics and Prose bookstore (Washington DC), March 28, 2018.
- NEW! (updated September 13, 2021) – Video (58 mins.) of Alan Hollinghurst discussing The Sparsholt Affair, Shakespeare and Company Bookshop (Paris), November 7, 2017. (This incarnation of Shakespeare and Company, an international literary hub in the early 20th century, is reopened from lesbian savant Sylvia Beach’s original bookstore of the same name, where she debuted James Joyce’s Ulysses in 1922, among many other modernist works.)
- NEW! (added September 12, 2021) – Video (58 mins.) of Alan Hollinghurst discussing The Sparsholt Affar, Talks at Google, March 26, 2018.
* Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth (General Fiction)
Children’s fantasy adventure novel; illustrated by Jules Feiffer.
- The Phantom Tollbooth – from Wikipedia.
- FREE ONLINE, complete text with the original illustrations, of The Phantom Tollbooth (link found at Wikipedia).
- Norton Juster – from Wikipedia.
- “Broken Kingdom: Fifty Years of The Phantom Tollbooth” by Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, October 10, 2011.
- Discussion questions for The Phantom Tollbooth, with links to introduction, summary, characters, main ideas, more – from SparkNotes.
- Resources for The Phantom Tollbooth, including overview, summary, characters, themes, more – from GradeSaver.
- Discussion questions for The Phantom Tollbooth – from Wednesday Book Club.
- Discussion questions for The Phantom Tollbooth – from All Sci Fi.
- Interview article with Juster, March 12, 2001, from Salon.com.
- Video of Juster, from Reading Rockets, YouTube dated April 23, 2014.
* Christina Baker Kline, A Piece of the World (General Fiction)
Novel about the secluded, but emotionally eventful, life of the woman who inspired Andrew Wyeth’s iconic 1948 painting, “Christina’s World.”
- Christina Baker Kline – from Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christina_Baker_Kline
- From the Author’s website. http://christinabakerkline.com/novels/a-piece-of-the-world/
- A Piece of the World summary – BookRags. http://www.bookrags.com/studyguide-a-piece-of-the-world-a-novel/#gsc.tab=0
- A Piece of the World summary in chronological order (the novel is somewhat nonlinear) – SuperSummary. https://www.supersummary.com/a-piece-of-the-world/summary/
- Author’s website – discussion questions. http://christinabakerkline.com/a-piece-of-the-world-discussion-questions/
- LitLovers – discussion questions. https://www.litlovers.com/reading-guides/fiction/10912-piece-of-the-world-kline?start=3
- BookBub – discussion questions. https://www.bookbub.com/blog/a-piece-world-book-club-questions-christina-baker-kline
- Andrew Wyeth – from Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Wyeth
- Wyeth’s painting “Christina’s World” – from Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Wyeth
- Large reproduction of the painting “Christina’s World” (1948) with notes, from the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). https://www.moma.org/collection/works/78455
- Article “The Pilgrims Who Visit the House in Andrew Wyeth’s “Christina’s World” – By Shannon Mullen, The New Yorker – May 8, 2019. https://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/the-pilgrims-who-visit-the-house-in-andrew-wyeths-christinas-world
- NOTE: Kline includes a wealth of resources in the afterward to her novel, including the books, articles, videos, and more that she used as research, along with her comments.
* Larry Kramer, provocative gay author and activist (🌈LGBTQ+)
- Larry Kramer – from Wikipedia.
- Larry Kramer Papers at Yale University’s Beineke Rare Book & Manuscript Library.
- Obituary and profile of Kramer, “The Benevolent Rage of Larry Kramer” by Michael Specter, from The New Yorker, May 28, 2020.
- Obituary, by Ryan Gilbey, from The Guardian, May 28, 2020.
- Yale LGBTS Mourns the Death of Larry Kramer, June 1, 2020.
- Video profile and interview (9 mins) of Larry Kramer, on his birthday, CBS Sunday Morning, ca. June 25, 2006 (“Kramer turned 71 today” mentioned).
- COMING SOON – MORE RESOURCES FOR LARRY KRAMER.
* Matthew Lopez, The Inheritance (🌈LGBTQ+ Play)
The experiences of contemporary NYC gay men in an epic two-part play that reimagines Howards End, exploring themes of resilience, class divisions, and the meaning of home.
– MATTHEW LOPEZ
- Matthew Lopez – from Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matthew_Lopez_(playwright)
– THE INHERITANCE
- The Inheritance – from Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Inheritance_(play)
- In-depth article on Matthew Lopez and The Inheritance – The New Yorker – September 9, 2019. https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/09/09/how-matthew-lopez-transformed-howards-end-into-an-epic-play-about-gay-life
- Official theatrical trailer for The Inheritance. https://theinheritanceplay.com/
- Critical review (the play “will (and should!) invite vigorous debate…” – this critique includes many ‘plot spoilers’) – Slate – December 12, 2019. https://slate.com/culture/2019/12/the-inheritance-play-review-matthew-lopez-gay-broadway.html
The Inheritance – London (2018)
- London production review (provocative, discusses characters, themes, formal elements) – Variety – play opened, reviewed March 28, 2018. https://variety.com/2018/legit/reviews/the-inheritance-review-play-1202739184/
- London production photos – The Guardian – March 19, 2018. https://www.theguardian.com/stage/gallery/2018/mar/19/vanessa-redgrave-the-inheritance-matthew-lopez-young-vic-theatre-london-in-pictures
The Inheritance – Broadway (2019)
- Matthew Lopez – Interview Magazine – November 14, 2019. https://www.interviewmagazine.com/culture/matthew-lopez-the-inheritance-broadway-play-aids-gay-storytelling
- Interview with Matthew Lopez – Entertainment Weekly – November 18, 2019. https://ew.com/theater/2019/11/18/the-inheritance-matthew-lopez-interview/
- Broadway production photos. https://www.broadway.com/shows/the-inheritance/photos/
- Video Interview with Matthew Lopez. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNK6Rhs5heQ
- Video Interview with Broadway cast of The Inheritance. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GknujbmljQ
NEW! Videos of two key scenes in The Inheritance, from the Broadway production, plus a commemoration for World AIDS Day 2020
- End of Part 1 on YouTube (5 minutes – example of ‘Page to Stage’ – notice how Stephen Daldry’s direction informs the text, using Leonardo’s “The Last Supper” in the staging, along with the evocative musical underscoring) – https://youtu.be/faqVPafnhpc
- Henry and Eric connect (4 minutes) – https://youtu.be/9IkiwtA1Nw0
- The Walter Project – Matthew Lopez & The AIDS Memorial: “to commemorate World AIDS Day, we have taken Walter’s speech at the end of Act 1, divided it into 33 sections, and asked friends, colleagues, and acquaintances to record themselves delivering a short section… In this year of loss , it is vitally important to continue the tradition of remembrance that began with the unveiling of the Quilt back in 1987. And while today we remember those whom we lost to AIDS, we hope this spirit will also extend to those we have lost this year to Covid, to police violence, and to the neglect of government and society….” (15 minutes) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Pd77JOgeNA
*OPTIONAL* Howards End
Discussion focuses on Matthew Lopez’s The Inheritance, but some people might also like to explore its inspiration, one of the most acclaimed, and beloved, novels in English literature, Howards End by E.M. Forster.
– HOWARDS END: E.M. Forster’s 1910 Novel, James Ivory’s 1992 Film, and Hettie Macdonald’s 2017 Mini-Series – the Forster masterpiece inspired Matthew Lopez to reimagine it in contemporary terms
- E.M. Forster’s Howards End (1910) (public domain – FREE in every format: ePub, Kindle, more – or read directly online). https://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/2891
- FREE complete audiobook of Howards End, from Librivox (over 15,000 free public domain audiobooks, listen online or download). Librivox offers three different complete Howards End audiobooks; I prefer this version, read by Elizabeth Klett, https://librivox.org/howards-end-by-e-m-forster
- Rooks Nest House (also known as “Howards” and “Rooksnest”) – Wikipedia (In Hertfordshire, Forster grew up there, living with his widowed mother; Rooks Nest’s has a fascinating history in it own right as detailed at Wikipedia – it was the model for the title location of Howards End; article includes photos). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rooks_Nest_House
- Howards End (1910 novel) – Wikipedia (includes plot summary). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Howards_End
- Howards End (novel) – SparkNotes (summary, characters, main ideas, more). https://www.sparknotes.com/lit/howardsend/
- Howards End (1992 film, directed by James Ivory). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Howards_End_(film)
- Howards End (2017 four-part miniseries (four hours), adapted by Kenneth Lonergan & directed by Hettie Macdonald. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Howards_End_(TV_series). The Howards End miniseries is currently free for Amazon Prime members – https://www.amazon.com/Episode-1/dp/B07B8C46Z7 [You can find all of these dramatizations through your local library (likely free), or they may be included on your streaming service, possibly Netflix.]
* Audre Lorde, Zami: A New Spelling of My Name (🌈LGBTQ+ Autobiographical Fiction)
Powerful “biomythography” (memoir) of growing up in 1950s Harlem and becoming, in her own words, a “Black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet.”
- Wikipedia entry on Audre Lorde.
- Wikipedia entry on Zami: A New Spelling of My Name.
- Zami: A New Spelling of My Name – Discussion Questions.
- Audre Lorde – selected poems (Poetry Foundation).
- Audre Lorde film and television credits – IMDb.
* Emily St. John Mandel, The Glass Hotel (General Fiction)
Experimental thriller about two siblings trapped in a pyramid scheme.
- Wikipedia entry on The Glass Hotel.
- Emily St. John Mandel’s website.
- The Glass Hotel Reader’s Guide.
- Thanks, Beverly!
* Paul Monette, Becoming a Man: Half a Life Story (🌈LGBTQ+ Non-Fiction)
Memoir that explores coming out in the 1960s at Yale, and beyond.
- Paul Monette – Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Monette
- Becoming a Man – Summary at BookRags. http://www.bookrags.com/studyguide-becoming-a-man/#gsc.tab=0
- Becoming a Man – Summary at eNotes. https://www.enotes.com/topics/becoming-man
- Two poems by Paul Monette – Poetry Foundation. https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/paul-monette
- Paul Monette’s film and television credits – IMDb. https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0597922/
- Paul Monette – Yale AIDS Memorial Project. http://yamp.org/Profiles/PaulMonette
- NEW! (added July 12, 2021) – Paul Monette interviewed by Charlie Rose (17 minutes), May 25, 1994. https://charlierose.com/videos/1287
* Cherríe Moraga, Native Country of the Heart, a Memoir (🌈LGBTQ+ Non-Fiction)
The relationship of a lesbian Latina author/activist and her mother who has Alzheimer’s.
- Cherríe Moraga’s site – books, theater, teaching, people, places and política. https://cherriemoraga.com/
- Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cherríe_Moraga
- Voices of Feminism Oral History Project (Smith College, Sophia Smith Collection of Women’s History) – Interview with Cherríe Moraga, June 6 and 7, 2005 – download PDF. https://tinyurl.com/moragainterview
- From Cherríe Moraga’s Publisher. https://us.macmillan.com/books/9780374219666
* Chinelo Okparanta, Under the Udala Trees (🌈LGBTQ+ Novel)
A young lesbian comes of age in war-torn 1960s Nigeria.
- Chinelo Okparanta’s site – bio, reviews, news, more
- Chinelo Okparanta – Wikipedia
- Under the Udala Trees – Wikipedia, includes summary and links
- Under the Udala Trees – discussion guide
- Udala trees (chrysophyllum africanum, commonly known as African star apple) – Wikipedia
* Marcel Proust, In Search of Lost Time (aka Remembrance of Things Past) (🌈LGBTQ+ Novel)
Intimate epic of the narrator’s experiences, of memory and desire, in turn of the 20th century French society.
- Proust resources (from a discussion group I organized in NYC) – background, book and film links, plus a recipe for madeleines, the tasty treats that set Proust’s intimate epic in motion (they were a hit at the NYC group!)
* Andy Weir, The Martian (General Fiction)
Realistic science fiction novel about an astronaut marooned on Mars.
- The Martian – Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Martian_(Weir_novel)
- “Diary Of An AssCan: A Mark Watney Short Story” – this is a brief (couple of pages) prequel, by Andy Weir himself, to The Martian, about what the main character, Mark Watney, did just before leaving on his Mars mission. NOTE (quote): “This story includes language that some might find offensive.” https://the-martian.fandom.com/wiki/Diary_Of_An_AssCan:_A_Mark_Watney_Short_Story
- Mars – Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mars
- Interview with Andy Weir about The Martian, from the author’s website. https://www.andyweirauthor.com/books/the-martian-tr
- “How scientifically accurate is ‘The Martian’? Ask W&M’s [the College of William & Mary] budding astrobotanists.” Students recreate the science behind The Martian, and show that it’s accurate. https://www.wm.edu/news/stories/2020/how-scientifically-accurate-is-the-martian-ask-wms-budding-astrobotanists.php
- Readers’ comments on The Martian, from Goodreads. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18007564-the-martian
- The Martian – Shmoop guide, including resources and discussion questions. (Shmoop is always both informative and laugh out loud funny). https://www.shmoop.com/study-guides/literature/the-martian
- The Martian – LitLovers guide. Besides a summary and other resources, there’s a podcast with two reviewers discussing both the novel and movie. https://www.litlovers.com/reading-guides/13-fiction/9666-martian-weir
- Discussion Guide: “Who knew potatoes, duct tape, and ‘70s reruns were the key to space survival?” – From ReadingGroupGuides discussion questions. https://www.readinggroupguides.com/reviews/the-martian/guide
- Discussion questions from Mount Prospect Public Library, of Illinois. https://mppl.org/check_it_out/book-discussion-questions-the-martian-by-andy-weir/
- Film of The Martian – Wikipedia (2015 film directed by Ridley Scott, who also made Alien, Thelma & Louise, Gladiator). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Martian_(film)
- WOW! Mars in 4K ultra high definition, actual video of Mars from three of NASA’s Rovers. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEyAs3NWH4A
* Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass (1855 “short” first version) (🌈LGBTQ+ Poetry)
The foundation of modern poetry, its visionary inclusiveness remains inspiring.
- Free PDF of the 1855 “short” first version of Leaves of Grass. http://www.rosingsdigitalpublications.com/download.php?file=whitman_walt_leaves_of_grass_1855_ed.pdf
- Walt Whitman – Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walt_Whitman
- Provocative article by Mark Edmundson, about Whitman, from the May 2019 issue of The Atlantic: “Walt Whitman’s Guide to a Thriving Democracy: America had a mind shaped by its Founders, but the country needed the poet to discover its spirit.” https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2019/05/walt-whitman-leaves-of-grass-american-democracy/586045/
- Commentary on the 1855 edition, from the Walt Whitman Archive. https://whitmanarchive.org/criticism/current/encyclopedia/entry_21.html
NOTE: Additional books and resources will be added frequently.
Begun March 20, 2021 / Revised September 16, 2021