Depressing for a lot of reasons, including the fact that the words "homosexual" and "lesbian" never appear. The heroine is born into wealth -- neither she nor her parents have ever worked a lick -- so her misery is less understandable. She is gallivanting around Europe, buying snazzy autos, going to clubs in 1920s Paris, eating in restaurants, buying a Left Bank house with garden -- and miserable. The author also uses irritating stereotypes for Irish, French, Spanish, German, Negroes in Paris (with no mention of jazz), peasants, inclinations of "normal" women and even animals -- plus her badly rendered Yorkshire accents and constant overcompensating for the "sensitive nerves of the invert." Well, it's 1928. She tried. The section on World War I ambulance drivers is a worthy re-creation.
jeez this is a depressing book! everyone feels so bad about being a lesbian; it's kind of hard to read because of that.
i'd say it has merits based on the fact that it was groundbreaking, and as an historical lesson for modern day lesbians who don't have to be feel quite as shameful as their predecessors did. but it's not a particularly fun novel.
It's a wonderfully written book, sad (and depressing, for some) but so true. I love the use of the language.
At one point all lesbian novels had to end badly in order to show the folly of having this orientation. This is one of those. It was alright up to the end.
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