Browsing: July-August 2020

July-August 2020

Blog Posts

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Ultimately, of course, of greatest interest to millions of readers is the unique nature of Tolkien’s genius, and it is here that Smith has made his most enduring impact. His ardent faith in Tolkien’s destiny proved justified, beginning in 1937 with the publication of The Hobbit; and Smith’s spirit lives on in the three books of The Lord of the Rings through the passionate love that grows between Frodo and Sam. Smith deserves to come out from the shadows cast by longstanding homophobia in literary studies and to be given his rightful place in English literature as Tolkien’s most influential muse.

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            With its alliterative subtitle, “Murder, Mayhem and Madness,” Tiger King is a true crime show that filmmakers Eric Goode and Rebecca Chailkin assembled out of footage stretching back five years. It’s Duck Dynasty meets Shittown (a must-hear of the early podcast era that also spotlights a redneck’s queer quirks and criminality).

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SUBLET BELONGS to a small genre of movies that chart a love affair whose arc rises and falls within a narrow window of time from first meeting to final farewell. It’s all telescoped into a period of days rather than months or years—or even into a single day, as in the 1995 film Before Sunrise and its two sequels. all directed by Richard Linklater. In the case of Sublet, the action takes place over a period of five days which are conveniently numbered, dividing the film into five acts.

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There couldn’t be a better time for Brian Harrison’s book than an election year in which the country is more polarized than ever. …

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WE’VE ALL come across people who say they don’t like fiction because it doesn’t teach them anything. I contend that a person could read the entire Encyclopedia Britannica website and not learn as much about human nature as they would by reading an especially fine novel, such as Peter Cameron’s What Happens at Night.

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            Keith Haring’s Line is neither a biography nor a general assessment of Haring’s work as an artist. Rather, it is a queer musing upon the intersections of sex and race in Haring’s work, drawing heavily upon the influence of Roland Barthes’ Mythologies and Jose Esteban Munoz’ Cruising Utopia. Montez writes with authority about photography, art, and queer theory, but the passion of this book lies in its interrogation of sex and race.

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The first half of The Shadowgraph centers on a dysfunctional Iowa childhood. …
… The second and more engaging half of the book consists of poems under titles of movies starring Stanwyck. Wonderfully witty as viewing companions, they function on other levels, too.

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            This book is about Jeremy’s transition and his family’s growth in understanding and acceptance, but it’s also the story of the Ivestors role in becoming advocates for transgender rights. Once a Girl, Always a Boy is a story of an intimate journey that informs the cisgender world about the complexities of gender identity and the importance of familial and social acceptance.

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THE QUEST to discover one’s true identity is a central theme in much of world literature. Zeyn Joukha-dar’s new novel, The Thirty Names of Night, explores this issue from a multiplicity of angles.

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[Unrequited Love] is filled with reminiscences about Altman’s friendships with authors like Christopher Isherwood, Gore Vidal, and Edmund White, as well as insightful commentary on other novelists. He notes, for example, that André Aciman, who is straight, gently avoids answering questions about whether Call Me by Your Name is based on his own life experiences.

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