by Gregg Shapiro
Here's a brief sampling of books, of interest to LGBT readers, being released this spring season, beginning with fiction entries.
Coral Glynn (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), Peter Cameron's first novel since his acclaimed Y/A novel Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You, is set in 1950s England and examines how victims of circumstance learn to love one another.
In the Y/A novel The Miseducation of Cameron Post (Harper Collins), Emily M. Danforth tells of the experience of a young lesbian dealing with being queer while staying with her ultra-religious aunt following the death of her parents in a car accident.
Novelist Alvin Orloff explores the mid-1970s with teenager Leonard shedding his "good kid" image and joining the Burnouts, a gang of misfits, as he embarks on his personal journey of self-discovery in Why Aren't You Smiling? (Manic D Press).
Teenage criminals Sarah, Jenna, Lauren and Cassie are sent to an experimental juvenile detention center on a farm to create something tangible. As three of the girls try to heal their wounds, one sets out to destroy everything they work for in Getting Somewhere (Penguin Young Readers, by Beth Neff.
Monstress (Ecco), award-winning, queer, Filipino writer Lysley Tenorio's debut story collection, includes the National Magazine Award-nominated title story among the eight pieces.
In his West Virginia-set debut novel The Evening Hour (Bloomsbury), Carter Sickels introduces us to Cole, a nursing home aid and part-time drug dealer whose interactions with the town folk, including an openly gay ex-con, are the basis of the story.
Eleanor Brown's marvelous novel The Weird Sisters (Berkley), about the three Andreas sisters, their ill mother and Shakespeare-quoting professor father, one of 2011's more auspicious debuts, is now available in a paperback edition.
Acclaimed gay essayist and poet Wayne Koestenbaum returns with Blue Stranger with Mosaic Background (Turtle Point), his first poetry collection since 2006's Best-Selling Jewish Porn Films.
The Collected Writings of Joe Brainard (Library of America), edited by Ron Padgett with an introduction by Paul Auster, includes the late gay writer's groundbreaking autobiographical piece I Remember, as well as poems, short plays, drawings and comic strips, stories, journal entries and more.
High school sweethearts Nate and Adam's relationship survived the strains of homophobic brutality, but as college life begins in different cities, their love is put to the test when new people enter their lives, forcing them to recognize what they really want in J.H. Trumble's novel Don't Let Me Go (Kensington Books).
The adult-oriented parody If You Give A Kid A Cookie, Will He Shut the Fuck Up? (St. Martin's Griffin), an honest tale of a parent just wanting to find peace with his noisy kids, by Marcy Roznick, fills the void between the books Go the F**k to Sleep and If You Give a Mouse a Cookie .
The 11 entwined short stories in 98 Wounds (Manic D Press) by Justin Chin explore intense emotions, as well as the characters that inhibit them.
"Sweep-you-off-your-feet" stories by Steve Berman, Simon Sheppard, Rob Rosen and 10 other gay writers can be found between the covers of Best Gay Romance 2012 (Cleis Press), edited by Richard Labonte.
Out writer R. Zamora Linmark is having quite a year in terms of publishing, following up his Coffee House Press novel Leche with his third poetry collection Drive-by Vigils (Hanging Loose Press).
After the murder of music critic Dwayne Robinson is dismissed by the NYPD as a gang initiation, his old friend D Hunter suspects there's more to it in The Plot Against Hip Hop by Nelson George (Akashic Books), a novel that parallels the history of hip hop and its culture.
Edited by Joyce Carol Oates, New Jersey Noir (Akashic Books) is dedicated to the Garden State and features a collaboration by out writers Edmund White and Michael Carroll, as well as contributions by Alicia Ostriker, Jonathan Safran Foer, C.K. Williams, Gerald Stern, Robert Pinsky and Oates herself.
In the novel Janet Planet (Mayapple Press), poet Eleanor Lerman rewrites the life of writer Carlos Castaneda, "godfather of the new age," for the Woodstock generation.
Boundaries (Akashic Books) by award-winning writer Elizabeth Nunez tells the story of a Caribbean husband and wife clinging to the Victorian notions of privacy while their daughter Anna yearns for her mother's affection and to assimilate in her new country.
As colorful and stylish as the man himself, Brad Goreski's Born To Be Brad: My Life and Style, So Far (It Books) is a combination memoir and style guide, full of personal stories, photos and style tips from the gay star of Bravo's reality shows It's a Brad, Brad World and The Rachel Zoe Project.
Arriving just in time to share in the Hawaii fascination stirred up by The Descendants, the paperback edition of Unfamiliar Fishes (Riverhead) by essayist and This American Life contributor Sarah Vowell offers her unique perspective on the "Americanization of Hawaii."
Edited by Audrey Bilger and Michele Kort, Here Come the Brides!: Reflections on Lesbian Love and Marriage (Seal Press) features contributions by Jennifer Camper, Holly Hughes, Joan Lipkin, Phyllis Lyon, Lesl a Newman, Monica Palacios and Lydia Stryk.
Neil Hegarty's The Story of Ireland: A History of the Irish People (Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin's Press) includes the Emerald Isle's 1990s decriminalization of homosexuality.
Published posthumously, The Weather in Proust (Duke University Press) by gay studies pioneer and literary theorist Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick is a collection of pieces, edited by her literary executor Jonathan Goldberg, of her work in the final years of her life, before she died of breast cancer in 2009.
As a devoted father, husband and professor at the Yeshiva University Joy Ladin shares her transitions from a man to a woman in Through the Door of Life: A Jewish Journey between Genders (U. of Wisconsin Press).
Princess Noire: The Tumultuous Reign of Nina Simone (U. of North Carolina Press) by Nadine Cohodas is a thorough biography of the late soul diva, musician, songwriter and civil rights activist.
Particularly timely in light of the recent changes regarding gays in the military, Out of Step by retired journalist J. Lee Watton (A&M Books) takes readers back 45 years to the Office of Naval Intelligence's gay witch-hunt, to tell the true story of what happened during the summer of 1965.
Described as "the definitive collection of writing" by a pioneering theorist and activist in feminist, lesbian and gay, queer, and sexuality studies, the substantial Deviations: A Gayle Rubin Reader (Duke University Press) compiles some of Rubins' most influential essays.
Including more than a dozen pages of color photos, It's Not Really About the Hair (!t Books) by Tabatha Coffey with Richard Buskin, the memoir by the out lesbian host of Tabatha's Salon Takeover, is now in a paperback edition.
The Good, the Bad and the God-Awful: 21st Century Movie Reviews (Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin's Griffin) by Kurt Loder of Rolling Stone and MTV fame contains more than 200 movie reviews, including some with queer content (The Nomi Song, Chloe, Savage Grace) and films from out filmmakers (I'm Not There, D.E.B.S., Broken Embraces and Burlesque).