Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Top 10 books about early 20th century Paris & London lesbians

Diana Souhami was shortlisted for the James Tait Black Prize for her biography of Radclyffe Hall, and won the 2001 Whitbread Biography Award for Selkirk's Island, the story of Scotsman Alexander Selkirk, the "real-life Robinson Crusoe."

A few years ago she named a top ten list of "books about Paris and London lesbians in the early 20th century" for the Guardian.

One book on the list:
Gluck: Her Biography, by Diana Souhami

How's that for chutzpah, I thought, when a decade ago Jeanette Winterson chose her own novel as Book of the Year. But if I don't recommend this biography of the society painter Gluck, how else will you know that among those with whom she had flings in London in the early 1930s were Constance Spry, flower arranger to the Queen, and Annette Mills, creator of Muffin the Mule? Those of us sufficiently over the hill to remember Mills on Children's Hour should revise our interpretation of the signature tune, 'We Want Muffin!'
Read about another title on Souhami's list.

--Marshal Zeringue