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April 24th, 2015

Francis Menuge & Jean Paul Gaultier

Born on April 24, 1952 in Arcueil, France, Gaultier was an only child who spent his youth struggling to escape the influence of his parents, who were both accountants and who hoped that their son would become a Spanish teacher. The future designer was greatly influenced by his grandmother, Marie Garrabe, a hypnotist and practitioner of alternative healing who encouraged him to pursue the unmanly pastimes of sketching and costume making.

Gaultier first realized the impact of his sketches when he was punished by his school teacher for drawing Folies Bergère showgirls. He was made to walk around school with the drawing pinned to his back. The punishment, however, only made the young Gaultier aware of his potential for showmanship.

At the end of the 1980s, Gaultier suffered some personal losses, including his lover and business partner for fifteen years Francis Menuge, who died of AIDS-related causes. Since then, there has been no mention of a significant other. (Picture: Jean Paul Gaultier holding a portrait of Francis Menuge)

The designer lives in Paris, where his business is headquartered, but also spends time in Italy, where his clothes are manufactured.

Gaultier never received formal training as a designer. Instead, he started sending sketches to famous couture stylists at an early age. Pierre Cardin was impressed by his talent and hired him as an assistant in 1970. Afterwards, he worked with Jacques Esterel in 1971 and Jean Patou later that year, then returning to manage the Pierre Cardin boutique in Manila from 1974-'75.

Francis Menuge, Jean-Jacques Picart and Jean Paul Gaultier
At the end of the 1980s, Gaultier suffered some personal losses, including his lover and business partner for fifteen years Francis Menuge, who died of AIDS-related causes. "I have been in love with the same person for 15 years," Gaultier said of his longtime companion. "It's my first love which continues. That person is a part of me." Since then, there has been no mention of a significant other. The designer lives in Paris, where his business is headquartered, but also spends time in Italy, where his clothes are manufactured.

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Source: http://www.circa-club.com/gallery/gay_history_icons_jean_paul_gaultier.php

Days of Love: Celebrating LGBT History One Story at a Time by Elisa Rolle
Paperback: 760 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (July 1, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1500563323
ISBN-13: 978-1500563325
Amazon: Days of Love: Celebrating LGBT History One Story at a Time

Days of Love chronicles more than 700 LGBT couples throughout history, spanning 2000 years from Alexander the Great to the most recent winner of a Lambda Literary Award. Many of the contemporary couples share their stories on how they met and fell in love, as well as photos from when they married or of their families. Included are professional portraits by Robert Giard and Stathis Orphanos, paintings by John Singer Sargent and Giovanni Boldini, and photographs by Frances Benjamin Johnson, Arnold Genthe, and Carl Van Vechten among others. “It's wonderful. Laying it out chronologically is inspired, offering a solid GLBT history. I kept learning things. I love the decision to include couples broken by death. It makes clear how important love is, as well as showing what people have been through. The layout and photos look terrific.” Christopher Bram “I couldn’t resist clicking through every page. I never realized the scope of the book would cover centuries! I know that it will be hugely validating to young, newly-emerging LGBT kids and be reassured that they really can have a secure, respected place in the world as their futures unfold.” Howard Cruse “This international history-and-photo book, featuring 100s of detailed bios of some of the most forward-moving gay persons in history, is sure to be one of those bestsellers that gay folk will enjoy for years to come as reference and research that is filled with facts and fun.” Jack Fritscher

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Alex Sanchez (born April 24, 1957)

Sanchez was born in 1957 in Mexico City, to parents of German and Cuban heritage, and emigrated to the United States in 1962.

Sánchez’s works explore themes of love, friendship, family, coming of age, and gay, bisexual, and questioning youth. His first novel, Rainbow Boys (2001), was selected by the American Library Association (ALA), as a “Best Book for Young Adults”. With the novel’s debut, Publishers Weekly (PW) Magazine deemed Sanchez a “Flying Start”.

Two sequels, Rainbow High (2003) and Rainbow Road (2005), complete the Rainbow trilogy, portraying the coming of age of three gay and bisexual teenage boys. Both novels were honored as “Books for the Teen Age” by the New York Public Library.

Sánchez’s novel So Hard to Say (2004), about a group of 13 year-olds, won the Lambda Literary Award for Children's and Young Adult literature. Getting It (2006) won second place at the 2007 Latino Book Awards for Best Young Adult Fiction in English. The God Box (2007), focuses on the conflict and friendship between two Christian teenage boys, one openly gay and the other struggling to accept his sexuality.

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Source: http://www.alexsanchez.com/

Further Readings:

Rainbow Boys by Alex Sanchez
Age Range: 12 and up
Grade Level: 7 and up
Paperback: 272 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (May 1, 2003)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0689857705
ISBN-13: 978-0689857706
Amazon: Rainbow Boys
Amazon Kindle: Rainbow Boys

Jason Carrillo is a jock with a steady girlfriend, but he can't stop dreaming about sex...with other guys.

Kyle Meeks doesn't look gay, but he is. And he hopes he never has to tell anyone -- especially his parents.

Nelson Glassman is "out" to the entire world, but he can't tell the boy he loves that he wants to be more than just friends.

Three teenage boys, coming of age and out of the closet. In a revealing debut novel that percolates with passion and wit, Alex Sanchez follows these very different high-school seniors as their struggles with sexuality and intolerance draw them into a triangle of love, betrayal, and ultimately, friendship.

More Spotlights at my website: www.elisarolle.com/, My Lists/Gay Novels

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Ruth Sims (born April 24)

Ruth Sims has lived her entire life in conservative, Republican, tiny-town Midwest USA surrounded by corn, wheat, and soybean fields. It's a strange place indeed for a Liberal Democrat to have sprouted. Like Emily Dickenson she's never seen a moor and never seen the sea but she's seen plenty of silos, Amish buggies, whitetails, and amber waves of grain. She'll battle anybody who says the flat, fertile land of the Midwest doesn't have its own kind of beauty.

Though many years past schooldays, her education is continuous and far-ranging, with interests ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous, from Shakespeare to groan-inducing puns and limericks. Her library has many shelves of history, biography, drama, and reference books. Her special love of drama is apparent in The Phoenix, and her passion for Classical and Romantic music comes to life in Counterpoint: Dylan's Story.

Words, imagination, books, music, and writing have always been the means by which she could slip into more exciting lives than her own. When the chance finally came for her to write full-time, she was able to focus on the stories that have been in her head for years. Her many characters are thankful to escape; it was getting crowded in there.

Source: http://www.ruthsims.com/

Further Readings:

The Phoenix by Ruth Sims
Paperback: 353 pages
Publisher: The Writers' Collective; 1st edition (September 1, 2004)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1932133402
ISBN-13: 978-1932133400
Amazon: The Phoenix
Amazon Kindle: The Phoenix

At fourteen, in a Victorian London slum, Jack Rourke brought down his abusive father with a knife. As a man, known to the world as Kit. St. Denys, he ruled the English stage and was adored by both men and women. Friends saw his talent and charm, and never suspected the simmering violence beneath or imagined the devil that haunted his mind.At fourteen, Nick Stuart was a country doctor's son, imbued with religious fervor and idealism. His only ambitions were to serve God by being a doctor. When he promised his life to God, his body to chastity, and his industry to mankind, he didn't know that only the last would be easy. He was shaken to his soul when he met Kit St. Denys and fell irresistibly and irrevocably in love.Neither of them could know that a monster from his past stalked Kit, biding his time until he could strike and destroy. He would succeed all too well.

More Spotlights at my website: www.elisarolle.com/, My Lists/Gay Novels

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Simon Gage (born April 24, 1963)

With plenty of color photos, graphics, best-of lists and miniprofiles of celebrities, plus a foreword by Boy George, Queer is a lighthearted celebration of gay and lesbian culture, especially of the last three decades. Edited by freelance writer Lisa Richard, former Boyz magazine editor Simon Gage and journalist Howard Wilmot, the book includes a survey of the gayest cities in the world, a retrospective of gay and lesbian contributions to entertainment and fashion (from drag kings to Versace) and spotlights of activists and icons ("Princess Diana: Latter day saint and gay icon or stupid spoilt bitch?"), all in a busy, slick package that will remind readers of their favorite glossy magazines.

Further Readings:

Queer by Simon Gage
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Da Capo Press (June 14, 2002)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1560253770
ISBN-13: 978-1560253778
Amazon Kindle: Queer

Gays and lesbians have traveled a long road from persecution to toleration and from fashionable to establishment. Terms of abuse that have long been weapons used to oppress the gay community have now been reclaimed as expressions of liberation and freedom. With wit and panache, Queer explores all avenues of gay life from avant-garde fashion to popular cartoon strips, from radical politics to global persecution. Included is a wide range of topics, magnificent spreads of personalities and icons, entertainment value, and many profoundly touching issues of our time. Queer not only presents the history and contribution of gay men and lesbians, but also takes a look across the spectrum at the advances made by the bisexual, transsexual and transgender communities and all points in between. Contributions from leading writers and commentators and a superb photo archive all add up to as definitive a statement as one can get, and, simultaneously, a great book. Featured revolutionaries include, among others, Derek Jarman, Sappho, Harvey Milk, Pat Califia, Audre Lorde, Oscar Wilde, Marie Antoinette, Queen of France, Edward II, King of England, Marlene Dietrich, James Baldwin, Djuna Barnes and Brandon Teena.

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Blog Tour: In-Decision by Sue Brown

In-Decision (Left at the Crossroads #2) by Sue Brown
Publisher: Sue Brown Stories (April 15, 2015)
Amazon Kindle: In-Decision (Left at the Crossroads #2)

Little Mowbury is a sleepy English village deep in the Cotswolds. The kind of village where you’re only a local if your lineage can be traced back to the dinosaurs. Where you can find everything in the single village shop from morning newspapers to dry-cleaning, and getting your shoes mended. And, of course, where everybody knows everybody else’s business. It’s easy to find… you can’t miss it… just ask anyone and they’ll tell you… “It’s left at the crossroads.”
Eighteen months ago Jason Havers lost the love of his life and it's time to move on. Applying for the position of chef in a sleepy country pub, a million miles away from his previous life, may well be the fresh start he needs. His new employers immediately take him under their wing and before long he finds himself with a passel of new friends and a job he loves. What he doesn’t expect is Tom, a gorgeous midwife, who stirs up feelings he’s not ready to deal with.
But when someone from his previous life turns up in Little Mowbury, will Jason be able to keep them from revealing the secret he’s been keeping from those he’s come to love?

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sue Brown is owned by her dog and two children. When she isn't following their orders, she be found haunting coffee shops to feed her coffee addiction. She spends hours people-watching instead of typing. She feeds the plot bunnies, not the word count.
Sue discovered M/M erotica at the time she woke up to find two men kissing on her favorite television series. The series was boring; the kissing was not. She may be late to the party, but she's made up for it since, writing fan fiction until she was brave enough to venture out into the world of original fiction

April 15: Diverse Reader || Multitasking Mommas || UK Gay Romance
April 16: Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words || Cia's stories
April 17: Hearts on Fire Reviews || The Purple Rose Tea House
April 20: The Novel Approach
April 21: Prism Book Alliance
April 22: RJ Scott || Because Two Men Are Better Than One
April 23: Divine Magazine
April 24: Elisa - My Reviews and Ramblings
April 27: Anne Barwell || Love Bytes Reviews
April 28: MM Good Book Reviews
April 29: Bayou Book Junkie
April 30: BFD Book Blog || Rainbow Gold Reviews

Win a copy of Lisa Worrall’s ‘Un-expected’ and 3 runners up will get to pick any one of Sue Brown’s books!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Rafflecopter Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/0f7bf72018/?

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