'The End of the Sherry' by Bruce Berger

Although there’s plenty of travel, Berger doesn’t consider his book travel literature. Following one of his literary idols, Lawrence Durrell, Berger aims instead for a “residence book.”… read more

'The Complete Short Stories of James Purdy' by James Purdy

To those lucky saps who find themselves in possession of The Complete Short Stories of James Purdy (Liveright Publishing): be warned. The temptation to belly up to all 58 stories, written between the late 1930s and 2003, may be overwhelming. Eager readers who opt to binge will discover that Purdy’s particular prose is best consumed… read more

'The Harvey Milk Interviews: In His Own Words' edited by Vince Emery

With the publication of The Harvey Milk Interviews, editor Vince Emery humanizes the slain politician, allowing Milk’s own words to temper the hagiography advanced by Randy Shilts’s The Mayor Of Castro Street, as well as the subsequent documentary that brought Milk to a wider audience…. read more

'For the Ferryman: A Personal History' by Charles Silverstein

One of the heroes responsible for changing the medical establishment’s understanding that gay people can be sane, Silverstein helped sway the American Psychiatric Association to remove homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses in 1973. What’s most disturbing (or exonerating) about For the Ferryman is that even a shrink of Silverstein’s stature can be sucked into a tumultuous psycho-dependent relationship…. read more

'Gay Bar: The Fabulous, True Story of a Daring Woman and Her Boys in the 1950s' by Will Fellows & Helen P. Branson

In 1957, just as the obscenity trial over “Howl” was coming to a head, the Mattachine-associated Pan-Graphics Press published a much different cri de couer: Helen P. Branson’s Gay Bar. With an introduction by Blanche M. Baker, M.D., “America’s first advice columnist for homosexuals” who, according to historian and author Will Fellows, preferred the fluidity… read more

Justin Spring's Obscene Biography

Too controversial for Vanity Fair? Secret Historian may be the Big Gay Book of 2010. Justin Spring’s Secret Historian: The Life and Times of Samuel Steward is shaping up to be The Big Gay Book of 2010. It’s not often that a tome this scholarly contains so much sex and sadness. But that’s what makes… read more

'Role Models' by John Waters

While drafting an introductory letter to Johnny Mathis in his new collection of writing, Role Models, John Waters thinks: “Explain what? A role model? Someone who has led a life even more explosive than mine, a person whose exaggerated fame or notoriety has made him or her somehow smarter or more glamorous than I could… read more