5 New LGBT Books

murder in the closet
Murder in the Closet: Essays on Queer Clues in Crime Fiction Before Stonewall edited by Curtis Evans (30 Nov 2016)
Analysis of LGBTQ life before the Stonewall Riots of 1969 traditionally has been dominated by the powerful negative image of the closet, the metaphorical space where that which was deemed “”queer”” was necessarily sheltered from hostile, heteronormative public view. Literary studies of queer themes and characters in crime fiction have tended to focus on works published in the freer environment that has existed in the years since Stonewall, queer material, so the traditional belief runs, having been, for the most part, only negatively or obliquely presented in crime fiction of the closet-bound pre-Stonewall era. This book tempers this traditional view, offering readers a groundbreaking collection of twenty-three essays, in which the authors investigate queer aspects to crime fiction published over eight decades, from the corseted Victorian era to the unbuttoned Swinging Sixties, on the very eve of Stonewall. “”Murder will out,”” so the saying goes, and this is true as well of queer material in pre-Stonewall crime fiction, if one but follows the clues.

WillfulMachinesPaperback.jpg
Willful Machines by Tim Floreen (1 Dec 2016)
The closeted son of an ultra-conservative president must keep a budding romance secret from his father while protecting himself from a sentient computer program that s terrorizing the United States and has zeroed in on him as its next target in this socially conscious sci-fi thriller to shelve between “The Terminator “and “Romeo and Juliet” (“Kirkus Reviews,” starred review).
In the near future, scientists create what may be a new form of life: an artificial human named Charlotte. All goes well until Charlotte escapes, transfers her consciousness to the Internet, and begins terrorizing the American public.
Charlotte s attacks have everyone on high alert everyone except Lee Fisher, the closeted son of the US president. Lee has other things to worry about, like keeping his Secret Service detail from finding out about his crush on Nico, the eccentric, Shakespeare-obsessed new boy at school. And keeping Nico from finding out about his recent suicide attempt. And keeping himself from freaking out about all his secrets.
But when attacks start happening at his school, Lee realizes he s Charlotte s next target. Even worse, Nico may be part of Charlotte s plan too.
As Lee races to save himself, uncover Charlotte s plan, and figure out if he can trust Nico, he comes to a whole new understanding of what it means to be alive and what makes life worth living.

room for milk
Room for Milk: Doodles by Cole Escola (1 Dec 2016)
If “The Far Side” had a gay little brother with borderline personality disorder, it might look something like this book. Sometimes absurdly funny, sometimes just absurd, Room for Milk by Cole Escola will take you on an acid trip through children’s books that don’t exist and other weird illustrated fever dreams.

fury
In the Eyes of Mr Fury by Philip Ridley (6 Dec 2016)
On the day Concord Webster turned eighteen, the Devil died. The Devil’s real name was Judge Martin, but Concord’s mother called him the Devil. She said he boiled babies for dinner and made lampshades out of human skin. So why did she, who hated him so venomously, have a key to his house?

The key will unlock more than just Judge’s front door. It will also unlock a multitude of stories – where magic children talk to crows, men disappear in piles of leaves, and James Dean lookalikes kiss in dark alleys – and reveal a secret history that will change Concord’s life forever.

Philip Ridley’s second novel (following the sexually charged tour de force Crocodilia) was an instant cult classic when originally published in 1989. Now, for this new edition, Ridley has reimagined the story, expanding the original novel into the world’s first LGBT magical realist epic. A vast, labyrinthine, hall-of-mirrors saga, its breathtaking imagery and stunning plot twists – covering over a hundred years – reveal Ridley to be one of the most distinctive and innovative voices in contemporary fiction.

‘Philip Ridley’s stories compel attention.’ – The Times (London)

‘Ridley is the master of modern myth.’ – The Guardian

‘Ridley is a visionary.’ – Rolling Stone

pathogen
Pathogen by Jessica Webb (13 Dec 2016)
When a deadly virus surfaces in the small, wealthy town of Hidden Valley, British Columbia, Dr. Kate Morrison and Sergeant Andy Wyles work together to uncover the source of the outbreak. As the two women navigate their new relationship, Kate and Andy are also forced to navigate a highly political and increasingly panicked community. Still bearing the scars of her recent abduction, Kate is driven to discover how this virus attacks her critically ill patients while Andy investigates suspicions of bioterrorism. As the death count rises, Kate struggles with a crushing sense of helplessness, the pressure to keep the residents of Hidden Valley alive, and Andy s growing concern that maybe Kate hasn t yet dealt with her troubled past.

5 New Plays

Can’t make it to the West End? Or Broadway? Why not check out some of the new playscripts being published right now.

karagula
Karagula by Philip Ridley (9 Jun 2016)
A doorway to a new future is ready to open. We are the hinge of that moment. We will let the door swing wide.

On a beautiful spring evening when both moons are full two teenagers vow eternal love. It is a moment that will have cataclysmic consequences. Not just for them, but for the world on which they live. A world where Prom Night is a matter of life or death, where weapons are grown and trained like pets, and where a chosen few are hearing a voice. A voice that speaks of . . . Karagula.

Philip Ridley s extraordinary, form-shattering Karagula is a play of epic proportions. Written in a fractured timescale, it explores our constant need to find meaning. To believe we re here for a reason. To have faith in something. Faith in . . . anything.

Karagula received its world premiere on 10 June 2016 at a secret London location in one of the largest productions ever staged in the Off-West End.

the best american short plays
The Best American Short Plays 2014-2015 edited by William W. Demastes (13 Sep 2016)
For more than 70 years, The Best American Short Plays has been the standard of excellence for one-act plays in America. From its inception, it has identified cutting-edge playwrights Tennessee Williams, Edward Albee, and others who have gone on to establish award-winning careers. The Best American Short Plays 2014-2015 is the next instalment from series editor William W. Demastes. This volume takes a look at the trinity Shakespeare coined as the lunatic, the lover, and the poet. The works in this volume explore whimsical, imaginative, humorous, and romantic themes. In the introduction, Demastes writes, What really hits home in Shakespeare’s plays is how he uses his own seething brain to put things onstage that cool reason will never be able to comprehend. He shows us that the world is more than facts and figures, that humans are connected by more than a balance sheet, and that life is more than biology. The wonderful short plays in this collection delve into the spectrum of emotions that bubble beneath cool reason and remind us about the some of the aspects that make life worth living for better or worse-the insanity, the beauty, the unbridled joy, and the mystery.

hand to god
Hand to God: A Play by Robert Askins (4 Oct 2016)
In the rec room in at a church in Cypress, Texas, Margery leads her students in a puppet pageant to strengthen their faith in the Bible and evade Satan’s hand. But when the young members of the Christian Puppet Ministry put those teachings into practice, one devout young man’s puppet takes on a shocking personality that no one could have expected. In this hilarious black comedy, a foul-mouthed sock puppet named Tyrone soon teaches those around him that the urges that can drive a person to give in to their darkest desires fit like a glove. In Hand to God, a “true tour de force” (New York Times), Robert Askins has written a play of “unerring perfection” (Huffington Post).

The must-see hit of the 2015 Broadway season, starring Steven Boyer and Geneva Carr, garnered an Obie Award and five Tony Award nominations, including Best Play, following its sold out, critically acclaimed off-Broadway runs at MCC Theater and Ensemble Studio Theatre.

theatre for youth
Theatre for Youth 2 edited by Coleman A. Jennings and Greta Berghammer (8 Nov 2016)
When “Theatre for Youth: Twelve Plays with Mature Themes” was published in 1986, it met a need for plays that could help young people deal with some of the more difficult realities of life. Responding to the sweeping changes in society over the succeeding thirty years, Coleman A. Jennings and Gretta Berghammer have assembled a new collection of plays that reflects not only on themes such as aging, death and dying, friendship, courage, conformity, maturation, sexuality, and struggles with moral judgment but also on gender identity, poverty, diversity, and discrimination.”Theatre for Youth II: More Plays with Mature Themes” presents twelve plays, nine of them new to this anthology, that offer a rich variety of original stories (“The Tomato Plant Girl,” “The Arkansaw Bear,” “Super Cowgirl and Mighty Miracle”), compelling adaptations (“The Afternoon of the Elves,” “Broken Hearts,” “Courage!”), historical drama (“Mother Hicks,” “Johnny Tremain”), diverse themes (“La Ofrenda,” “The Transition of Doodle Pequeno”), friendship (“The Selfish Giant”), and future societies (“With Two Wings”). As these plays explore some of the most challenging themes for today s youth, including the difficulties of single parenthood, divorce, race relations, sexuality, and gender discrimination, they share messages fundamental to us all: open your imagination and dare to dream; embrace life; honor your personal passion, beliefs, and creativity; take a risk; and love with all your heart

here we go
Here We Go / Escaped Alone : Two Plays by Caryl Churchill (15 Nov 2016)
“What Churchill has written is a striking memento mori for an age without faith; and although her play is brief, that in itself evokes the idea that we are here for a short time and then are suddenly gone.” “The Guardian “on “Here We Go”

“Line by line it’s hard to imagine you’ll come across a more brilliant play this year . . . and what makes “Escaped Alone “a great play is that it is strangely euphoric: spiked with terrible, apocalyptic foreboding, yes, but Churchill’s funniest since “Serious Money,” and with an incredible gift for spinning light out of the dark.””Time Out London “on “Escaped Alone”

The prolific repertoire of Caryl Churchill gains two thrilling new entries with “Here We Go “and “Escaped Alone,” both exemplary of her notoriously dark, witty work. Creeping and ruminative, Here We Go “acts as a chilling reminder of our own mortality” (“The Guardian”), with a three-part examination of death and its aftermath. “Escaped Alone “considers a notably broader demise: the apocalypse. Through the musings of four older women idly chatting in an English back garden, the fate of the world is outlined in an unsettling revelation of mankind’s own self-destruction.

Caryl Churchill has written for the stage, television, and radio. A renowned and prolific playwright, her plays include “Cloud Nine,” “Top Girls,” “Far Away,” “Drunk Enough to Say I Love You?,” “Bliss,” “Love and Information,” “Mad Forest ,” and “A Number.” In 2002, she received the Obie Lifetime Achievement Award and in 2010, she was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame.