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June 25th, 2013

Michel Tremblay (born June 25, 1942)

Michel Tremblay, CQ (born in Montreal, Quebec 25 June 1942) is a Canadian novelist and playwright.

Tremblay grew up in the Plateau Mont-Royal, a French-speaking neighbourhood of Montreal, at the time of his birth a neighbourhood with a working-class character and joual dialect, something that would heavily influence his work. Tremblay's first professionally produced play, Les Belles-Sœurs, was written in 1965 and premiered at the Théâtre du Rideau Vert on August 28, 1968. Its impact was huge, bringing down the old guard of Canadian theatre and introducing joual to the mainstream. It stirred up controversy by portraying the lives of working class women and attacking the straight-laced, deeply religious society of mid-20th century Quebec.

The most profound and lasting effects of Tremblay's early plays, including Hosanna and La Duchesse de Langeais, were the barriers they toppled in Quebec society. Until the Quiet Revolution of the early 1960s, Tremblay saw Quebec as a poor, working-class province dominated by an English-speaking elite and the Roman Catholic Church. Tremblay's work was part of a vanguard of liberal, nationalist thought that helped create an essentially modern society.

His most famous plays are usually centered on homosexual characters. The women are usually strong but possessed with demons they must vanquish. It is said he sees Quebec as a matriarchal society. He is considered one of the best playwrights for women.

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Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michel_Tremblay

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Thomas Cowperthwait Eakins (July 25, 1844 – June 25, 1916) was an American realist painter, photographer, sculptor, and fine arts educator. He is widely acknowledged to be one of the most important artists in American art history. (Picture: Self portrait, National Academy of Design, New York.)

For the length of his professional career, from the early 1870s until his health began to fail some 40 years later, Eakins worked exactingly from life, choosing as his subject the people of his hometown of Philadelphia. He painted several hundred portraits, usually of friends, family members, or prominent people in the arts, sciences, medicine, and clergy. Taken en masse, the portraits offer an overview of the intellectual life of Philadelphia in the late 19th and early 20th centuries; individually, they are incisive depictions of thinking persons. As well, Eakins produced a number of large paintings which brought the portrait out of the drawing room and into the offices, streets, parks, rivers, arenas, and surgical amphitheaters of his city. These active outdoor venues allowed him to paint the subject which most inspired him: the nude or lightly clad figure in motion. In the process he could model the forms of the body in full sunlight, and create images of deep space utilizing his studies in perspective.

No less important in Eakins' life was his work as a teacher. As an instructor he was a highly influential presence in American art. The difficulties which beset him as an artist seeking to paint the portrait and figure realistically were paralleled and even amplified in his career as an educator, where behavioral and sexual scandals truncated his success and damaged his reputation.

The Swimming Hole, 1884-5, Amon Carter Museum, Fort Worth, Texas.

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Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Eakins
In the 1880s, Philadelphia painter and photographer Thomas Eakins did extensive work with the male nude, including a series of photographs of a probably eighteen-year-old Billy Duckett, who was intimately involved, and lived for five years, with Walt Whitman. (Eakins also took formal photographs of Whitman, including a traditional “wedding portrait” of Whitman and Duckett.) The Swimming Hole, Eakins’s famous 1885 painting of five youths bathing nude on a lake, echoes Whitman’s images of an eroticized pastoral scene from “Song of Myself”:
An unseen hand also pass’d over their bodies,
It descended tremblingly from their temples and ribs.

The young men float on their backs, their white bellies bulge to the sun, they do not ask who seizes fast to them,
They do not know who puffs and declines with pendant and bending arch,
They do not think whom they souse with spray.
Most art historians agree that von Gloeden had sexual relationships with men and that Day, Eakins, and Sargent had romantic, if not physical, relationships with men. Women and men who desired their own sex had not found a significant level of freedom in America. But these female and male artists were able to live with a certain amount of visibility, with privileges the ordinary person did not have. --Bronski, Michael (2011-05-10). A Queer History of the United States (Revisioning American History) (Kindle Locations 1758-1761). Beacon Press. Kindle Edition.
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More Artists at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art

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I asked to all the authors joining the GayRomLit convention in Atlanta in October (http://gayromlit.com/grl-authors) a personal favor, a special Ebook Giveaway: twice a week I will post 1 book from each author, and among those who will leave a comment, I will draw a winner. Very easy and very fast ;-) I will send a PM to the winner, so remember to not leave anonymous comments!

And the ebook giveaway goes to: Pelaam

Today author is Poppy Dennison: Poppy Dennison, a sassy southern lady, developed an obsession with things that go bump in the night in her early years after a barn door flew off its hinges and nearly squashed her. Convinced it was a ghost trying to get her attention, she started looking for other strange and mysterious happenings around her. Not satisfied with what she found, Poppy has traveled to Greece, Malaysia, and England to find inspiration for the burly bears and silver foxes that melt her butter. Her love of paranormal continues to flourish nearly thirty years later, and she writes steamy love stories about the very things that used to keep her up all night. If her childhood ghost is lucky, maybe one day she’ll give him his own happily ever after.
Website: http://poppydennison.com/
Most recent title: Creature Feature
Publishers: Dreamspinner Press, MLR Press

Creature Feature by Mary Calmes and Poppy Dennison
Paperback: 236 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (March 20, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1623804299
ISBN-13: 978-1623804299
Amazon: Creature Feature
Amazon Kindle: Creature Feature

Diagnosis: Wolf by Poppy Dennison

Thanks to his good-for-nothing brother, Andrew Hughes is up to his eyeballs in debt and needs a job fast. When a nursing position opens up in Myerson, Arizona, Andrew has no choice but to take it, despite a warning about how difficult a patient Caleb DiMartino can be. Andrew can deal with a little trouble—but Caleb’s strange family, the armed guards, and the unknown cause of Caleb’s mysterious illness may be beyond his skill set.

Landslide by Mary Calmes

For three years, paranormal courier Frank Corrigan has been working for incubus demon Cael Berith. Cael knows Frank is his mate, but Frank is pretty sure Cael doesn’t even like him, never mind want to spend the rest of his life with him, so their personal relationship is at an impasse. When Frank’s sister, Lindsey, gets bitten by a werewolf she's sleeping with—and possibly witnesses a murder—Frank rides to her rescue. If he’s lucky, he might just save his love life too.

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Sole Support by Kaje Harper

When you open a book that is almost twice the ordinary length and nevertheless start it, knowing you will see the little hour of the night, because you are sure it will be good? That was Sole Support for me. I don’t know what gave me the feeling that this was one of those books you don’t forget, maybe the blurb, a 37 years old virgin falling in love for the first time, yes, maybe that was it, or maybe the stray cat… in any case Sole Support fulfilled my expectations and maybe something more.

I truly love the characters, so ordinary! And yes, I loved they were ordinary people, not some unreachable romance hero. Mike is short, skinny, painfully shy, at 37 years old resembling more Woody Allen than some cute twink; nevertheless, Kellen likes him, at first I think in almost a patronizing way. Kellen is more expert, used to play the field, no strings attached relationships and all. Pushing more 50 than 40, tall and fit, but with the threatening of overweight luring, he is not exactly your dream hero. And now maybe you are understanding what I mean with ordinary people, describing Mike and Kellen with their physical description, doesn’t entice the reader to start the novel, but well, how they look doesn’t really matter. They are good to each other, they are two gay men, single, ready for something serious (even if Kellen doesn’t want to admit it). I could also add to their ordinaries, that Kellen is also unemployed, or better he is self-employed as an editor after he lost his job as salesman in a bookstore. He is a wanna-be mystery author, but like him thousand others. Sure he is good, but more or less on the average. This is not a romance of exploitation, with big revelations, fame and fortune and happily ever after. It’s more warm and comfort, AND happily ever after, but in a very realistic way.

Kellen’s relationship with his mother touched me almost in a painful way, being more or less in the same situation; being the sole support of an aging parent is not easy, and Kellen is as stubborn as his mother. He is ready to sacrifice his personal life, and to an extend also his professional one, or at least to put a stop to it until something will happen (read his mother passing away). But planning and realizing is not the same, and it’s even more difficult when you are basically a social being, not used to cut everyone out of your life.

Truly wonderful story, touching and sweet, but also sexy when it was the right moment.


Amazon Kindle: Sole Support
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd. (June 4, 2013)

Reading List: http://www.librarything.com/catalog_bottom.php?tag=reading list&view=elisa.rolle

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