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Beach, beach,
beach

Beach, beach,
beach

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Headed for a holiday in the sun and sand? Make sure to pack one of these hot summer titles in your tote bag.

Mystery & murder

The Pale Blue Eye by Louis Bayard (HarperCollins, June 1, $24.95) A grisly murder in old New York challenges a young sleuth named Edgar Allan Poe. Yes, the one who later wrote the horror stories. One of the buzziest books of the season by the out author of the awesome Mr. Timothy.

The Art of Detection by Laurie R. King (Bantam, June 6, $24) In her fifth outing, lesbian San Francisco detective Kate Martinelli is torn between domestic bliss and a case that evokes eerie memories of Sherlock Holmes.

Favas Can Be Fatal by Priscilla Royal (Alyson, now on sale, $13.95) A nasty food critic drops dead in a restaurant. The owner's best friend leaps in to solve the crime, uncovering twists, turns, and a way-strange murder weapon.

Women of Mystery: An Anthology, edited by Katherine V. Forrest (Harrington Park, now on sale, $19.95) Fourteen bite-size whodunits by top lesbian authors. Yum!

Divas/dramas

Barbra: The Way She Is by Christopher Andersen (William Morrow, now on sale, $25.95) If this ain't a beach read, honey, what is? Streisand is a superstar among superstars, but the showbiz lore is just part of what makes her life story so compelling. This unauthorized bio--written by an out former editor of People magazine whose previous best sellers include tell-alls on Princess Diana and the Kennedys--digs deep for surprising insights on La Streisand, her lovers (Prince Charles?), her fears, her politics, her AIDS activism, and, let's not forget, her gay son, 2001 Advocate cover boy Jason Gould.

The Romanian by Bruce Benderson (Tarcher/Penguin, now on sale, $16.95) Here's a story that's got it all: bruised 20-ish Romanian hustler; jaded older American gay man with dollars; Budapest, Paris, New York; even a Celine Dion subplot. Sample quote: "Are you crazy!... This cream is not for eye!"

Tweaked by Patrick Moore (Kensington, June 6, $15) A scarifying first-person account of one man's trip to crystal meth hell and back again.

I'm Coming to Take You to Lunch by Simon Napier-Bell (Wenner, now on sale, $14.95) The inside story of music-biz hustle and gay chutzpah from the big-time music manager who decided to make Wham! (the duo featuring a very young George Michael) the first Western pop group to play in mainland China. A major hoot.

Fierce fiction

Vellum by Hal Duncan (Del Rey, now on sale, $14.95) Already a hit in the United Kingdom, this sci-fi tour de force comes from the imagination of a gay Scottish blogger discovered for the U.S. market by a Web-surfing literary editor.

Now Is the Hour by Tom Spanbauer (Houghton Mifflin, now on sale, $26) The veteran gay indie novelist re-creates the summer of love in San Francisco through the eyes of an Idaho farm boy out to learn the truth about the world and his own desires.

Divas Don't Yield by Sofia Quintero (One World/Ballantine, now on sale, $13.95) "Chica lit" gets a welcome new entry with this story of four women friends, gay and straight, who hit the road for a women's conference and arrive at insight instead.

Hard by Wayne Hoffman (Carroll and Graf, now on sale, $14.95) In 1990s New York, sex-positive and AIDS activist politics collide: Moe Pearlman loves him some bathhouses. Gay newspaper publisher Frank DeSoto is helping the mayor close them down. Who's right? Who's wrong? It's going to take a lot of sex to find out.

Codetalkers

Gay 2 Zee by Donald F. Reuter (St. Martin's, May 30, $11.95) From twink to tighty whities, the meaning and origin of those words that move the boys of summer. Illustrated with Reuter's trademark yummy pencil sketches.

Queer Cowboys by Chris Packard (Palgrave, now on sale, $12.95) We know there were cowboys who loved each other back in the Wild West days, so it stands to reason the writers of the era did too. Packard reads between the lines of writers like Mark Twain to round up the dirt.

30 Years of Out100Out / Advocate Magazine - Jonathan Groff & Wayne Brady

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Anne Stockwell