Originally this review was published in our paper magazine of Spring ’85
Published: Brilliance Books 1983
Originally published in 1953, this novel is a story of unrequited (heterosexual) love, by Gay characters play a significant part. The main gay character, Chris, is a ‘drag performer’, who plays the woman’s role in everyday life which, Clarkson implies, is the only possible one a homosexual man could play in England in the 1950s.
Chris’s attraction to other men is because of his deeply inculcated inferiority feelings, associated with a desire to be dominated, or even abused by them. He is a victim of the attitudes of his time.
Subconsciously, Chris wants to be a ‘real man’, but the social stigma attached to homosexuality forces him further into the sordid (and tragic) life-style of the homosexual sub-culture,which was all that was available before the rise of any kind of Gay Pride.
A good read – which has the salutary affect of allowing us to see how far we have come in a mere 65 years.
This book would now appear to be out of print, but there are still second-hand copies available on Amazon – here is the link – The Wounded Amazon LInk