So I came up with a short list of older books that I personally think are classics in both LGBT literature and in the LGBT community as a whole. These books were written before there even was a a genre called LGBT. The genre used to be gay/lesbian…the B’s and T’s were either completely left out or they were considered part of the “group.” But as the genre has evolved, anyone who is informed now refers to it as LGBT.
These books are classics. There was a time, before the Internet, that books like these kept members of the very silent LGBT community sane. I’m not exaggerating on this either. Reading books like this helped LGBT men and women identify and come to terms. In many cases, it helped them accept who they are and showed them that there were other people out there just like them.
In many ways, and in many places, things haven’t changed all that much. It’s not all like we see it on TV and in Hollywood. It would be nice if it were, but it’s not. And books are still helping the LGBT community come to terms with who they are. Below are three that left long lasting impressions on me, as a gay man.
GIOVANNI’S ROOM James Baldwin
DANCER FROM THE DANCE by Andrew Holleran
THE FRONTRUNNER Patricia Nell Warren