I’m thrilled with this from Chicago’s larges Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and transgender press. This is quite an honor to have this attention from them.
Paulette Mahurin uses the trials of Oscar Wilde in 1895 as a backdrop for a Patience & Sarah-like tale of the Old West in The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap (Blue Palm Press), a fun imagining of life for lesbians on the range. As the promo for the book noted: “The year 1895 was filled with memorable historical events: the Dreyfus Affair divided France; Booker T. Washington gave his Atlanta address; Richard Olney, United States Secretary of State, expanded the effects of the Monroe Doctrine in settling a boundary dispute between the United Kingdom and Venezuela; and Oscar Wilde was tried and convicted for gross indecency under Britain’s recently passed law that made sex between males a criminal offense. When news of Wilde’s conviction went out over telegraphs worldwide, it threw a small Nevada town into chaos. This is the story of what happened when the lives of its citizens were impacted by the news of Oscar Wilde’s imprisonment. It is a chronicle of hatred and prejudice with all its unintended and devastating consequences, and how love and friendship bring strength and healing.” I enjoyed the connections between closeted lesbians in Nevada and Wilde’s own trials, and Mahurin does a nice job of creating these characters just from the inspiration of photograph.