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Sucking Sherbet Lemons

What do you do when you're fat, 14, obsessed with the Catholic Church, with Doing the Right Thing, with scones and sweets, with other boys and their private parts? Well, if you're Benson, you panic and flee, hiding from the flesh as a novice in a monastery.

Alas, St Finbar's monastery is as full of temptation as the grammar school he'd left behind. The devils of desire find Benson once again and throw him back into the world from which he’d tried to escape.

Returned to school, Benson is still trying to square the circle of his conflicting enthusiasms and desires. Can he be both gay and Catholic? Gay and Happy?

Sucking Sherbet Lemons recounts the coming out experience of a gay man at a time when homosexual acts were illegal. Written in the late Eighties, in response to those who condemned gay men in the light of the AIDS epidemic – and instated Clause 28 to end discussion of the subject – this is a powerful and hilarious broadside aimed at the forces of intolerance, ignorance and fear.

The times have changed, with legalization, and now even Civil Partnerships in Britain – but the difficulties, silence, bewilderment and embarrassment of ‘coming out’ have not. Sucking Sherbet Lemons is a coming out novel for the ages. We are proud to re-release this gay classic to help, entertain – and console – a new generation, gay, straight, and all points in-between.

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