Pride Month Book Pairs: Part II
We're back with more book pairings!
Dig in! And remember to check out part one. If any of these pairings make you go ???, then read below.
You might be like, Hannah, some of these pairings are wild. E.M. Forster with Julian Winters? What are you guys doing??? I think some of these pairings are books that capture the same themes across eras. Forster was closeted his whole life and Maurice, his only known gay work, was published posthumously in 1971. Winters also wrote about two young boys finding their way in the big wide world—about one hundred years later. Interestingly, the mothers and young female characters in both stories felt very similar to me, and both books have a kind of dreamy, luxurious prose style that make them especially nice for summer. But ultimately they're paired because they capture boys in two different eras, with two different outcomes. (Julian Winters, of course, is not closeted. You can find him being charming on Twitter here.)
Similarly, we have Saikaku Ihara, who lived in 17th century Japan, paired with Fumi Yoshinaga, a manga creator born in Tokyo the same year Forster's Maurice was finally published, 1971. Ihara lived in Osaka, mingling with all classes of the city, and wrote about the quotidian and romantic in a violent, brutal time when people were expected to do things far more practical than jot down little short stories. Yoshinaga lives in a different Japan, portraying everyday life for two queer men in modern Tokyo, from them eating dinner together to dealing with their families' microaggressions.
James Baldwin is James Baldwin; lesbian writer Shay Youngblood writes about the generation after James Baldwin—a young woman obsessed with his work travels to Paris, wondering if she'll cross paths with the literary legend. Mary Renault, a revolutionary in the world of historical fiction writing, published openly gay works in the 1950s and 60s, and her queer Alexander the Great partly inspired The Captive Prince trilogy, which in and of itself helped break open walls for gay writing in mainstream publishing. Threads through different eras, people. Here ya go.
Thank you to Avery and Robin for brainstorming book pairs with me. Thank you to Robin for coming up with the idea and for making the graphic!
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