Paradise Press publishes a wide range of fiction, poetry and non-fiction by lesbians and gay men. Our titles – over forty so far – are available in print, e-book or both formats. From fantasy and chilling tales of the supernatural to the memoirs of gay men who lived through the repressive years of the 1950s and 1960s, from acerbic humour to thoughtful poetry, from romance to mystery, there’s a book for you. Two novels by Paradise Press authors have been short-listed for major gay literary prizes – Timothy Graves’ Homo Jihad for the Polari First Book Prize in 2011 and Rod Shelton’s Bokassa’s Last Apostle for the gay mystery category in the 2013 Lambda Literary Awards.
New titles for 2015/16: Pharmakeia by Timothy Graves – “Art and death, cocaine and meth, from Shoreditch to Soho and back again. Graves documents the artistic world of London – its drug-fuelled highs and overdosing lows with extraordinary detail.” Clayton Littlewood, author of Dirty White Boy.
Consequences by Elizabeth J Lister’ - The destructive force of homophobia
Kissyface by Elsa Wallace - three stories about gay lives
Amiable Warriors Volume one A Space to Breath by Peter Scott-Presland – A history of The Campaign for Homosexual Equality and its times.
When Mahvand Amirzadeh, a young gay comics artist, encounters Belial (aka Jean-Baptiste Lebeau-Chevalier) at a literary soiree in the East End, his artistic journey takes an unexpected turn. Mahvand is lured into the dark underbelly of London’s conceptual art scene and enters into a Faustian- like pact with Jean-Baptiste. But what is Jean-Baptiste’s true nature? And how far will Mahvand go in his quest to become a celebrity- artist?
Pharmakeia is a darkly disturbing tale interwoven with humour and light – from Candy Darling, the Geordie transsexual who works below Mahvand in the basement sex shop, to Gracie, Mahvand’s cockney-rhyming, Tarot-reading Gran.
In this fifth and last book in Elizabeth J Lister’s series of lesbian romances, the characters are caught up in the destructive consequences of homophobia. Can relationships survive its devastating effects? Elizabeth J Lister aims to present in a positive light the everyday thoughts and actions of homosexual men and women as they relate to their families, people within the workplace and society - and particularly when they fall in love.
‘We don’t mention the beech wood,’ says Herman, but much else is mentioned in these three sets of stories about developments in gay lives.
In Kissyface, Hein encompassed by sexuality asserts he is non-sexual, and Liesl reports to her school that she has two fathers and two mothers.
In On the Copperbelt Clare is drawn to nuns and Roland is obsessed with a dead German; if it had stopped at that, how happy his mother would have been.
In Music at the Buchanans Janey loses a job through intimacy with an employer’s wife but finds a better, and the usually wordless Mr Marrant vows that his next kiss will be ‘Not like a savage or, worse, a Frenchman, but….slowly and gently, I will speak to him in my kissing.’
With Foreword by Paul O'Grady
The Campaign for Homosexual Equality (CHE) was the largest LGBT organisation ever in the UK. It had over 5,000 members and 150 local groups, from St. Ives to Sunderland, from Swansea to Norwich. For twenty years (1970–1990) it campaigned ceaselessly for the human rights of LGBT people. It provided a social network, support, counselling and encouragement to ‘come out’ for tens of thousands of LGBT people all over the country. For people living in smaller towns it was often the only form of support and socialising that was available.
With a Foreword by Jeremy Kingston
The rich tapestry of life in and around London theatres in the Victorian age. Oscar Wilde and his first-night supporters with their green carnations, soon to be dispersed when disaster struck; ‘Fanny and Stella’ parading in full drag, and their triumph in court; Sir Henry Irving and his close male friendships. Plus the many ways that the theatre impacted the lives of men, as actors, musicians, dramatists, and men behind the scenes and in the audience.
Diverse Performances is a comprehensive survey of the role of men in the Victorian theatre, with insights into the behaviour of ‘swells’ in the audience, the unhealthy conditions backstage, the techniques of lighting as gas jets were replaced by limelight and then by electricity, the struggle of playwrights to earn a decent living, the portrayal of soldiers sailors, and working men in popular melodrama, and the struggle for actors to be considered ‘respectable’.