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Original Essays | September 18, 2014

Lin Enger: IMG Knowing vs. Knowing

On a hot July evening years ago, my Toyota Tercel overheated on a flat stretch of highway north of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. A steam geyser shot up from... Continue »
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    The High Divide

    Lin Enger 9781616203757

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4 Remote Warehouse Gay and Lesbian- Gay Fiction
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Abide with Me


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Reading Group Guide

The Invisible Life Trilogy

In three linked novels—Invisible Life, Just As I Am, and Abide With Me—E. Lynn Harris opens the door to a world rarely depicted in popular literature, the gay and bisexual black community. Written with sensitivity and sass, the novels have all appeared on the Blackboard bestseller list and have won enthusiastic acclaim from critics and a broad range of readers. The questions, discussion topics, and suggested reading list that follow are designed to enhance your reading group's discussion of the books and the insights they offer into the lives of men and women, gay and straight, as they face such universal problems as finding and keeping love, making the right career choices, and dealing with sometimes difficult parents, co-workers, and friends.

At the center of the Invisible Life trilogy is Raymond Tyler, a man struggling to do the right thing without betraying his past or sacrificing his dreams. The son of a successful lawyer in Birmingham, Alabama, Raymond always assumed he would follow in his father's footsteps. His life takes an unexpected turn, however, when he finds himself attracted to a handsome fraternity brother at college. Their carefully cloaked relationship—at once confusing, exhilarating, and frightening—marks the first step in Raymond's journey toward self-discovery and self-acceptance. It is a journey that takes him from the tradition-bound South to the uninhibited world of gay Manhattan, to a thriving Seattle, where his legal career and his love-life seem destined for lasting success. Along the way, Raymond encounters a rich and diverse array of people, including the flamboyant, openly gay Kyle; the beautiful, loving Nicole, an aspiring actress; and Basil, a dashing and dangerous football player. Their stories join with Raymond's in a fast-paced chronicle that proves that love, friendship, and sexual desire frequently defy conventional expectations and explanations.

Harris's novels not only recount the changes and choices the individual characters confront, they evoke in telling detail the society in which those choices are made. From the importance of church and family to the consequences of biases based on skin color, sexual orientation, and gender, Harris uncovers the ties that bind and the issues that divide the African American community today.

Product Details

Harris, E. Lynn
Anchor Books
New York
Seattle (Wash.)
Washington (state)
Love stories
African Americans
African American lawyers
African American gays
General Fiction
Gay and Lesbian-Gay Fiction
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series Volume:
bk. 2
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
8 x 5.2 x 0.8 in 0.6 lb

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » African American » General
Gay and Lesbian » Fiction and Poetry » Gay Fiction
Gay and Lesbian » Fiction and Poetry » Men's Fiction

Abide with Me Used Trade Paper
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Product details 368 pages Anchor Books - English 9780385486583 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , In this hotly anticipated conclusion to his popular "Invisible Life" trilogy, Harris delivers a masterful tale that traces the evolving lives of his beloved characters Nicole Springer and Raymond Tyler, Jr., and introduces readers to their respective lovers, best friends, and potential enemies.
"Synopsis" by , In the hotly anticipated conclusion to his popular "Invisible Life" trilogy, Harris delivers a masterful tale that traces the evolving lives of his beloved characters Nicole Springer and Raymond Tyler, Jr., and introduces readers to their respective lovers, best friends, and potential enemies.
"Synopsis" by , Explores the bonds of love and friendship through the eyes of Raymond Tyler, Jr., who faces a setback in both his successful career and his relationship, and Nicole Springer, who relocates to New York to pursue her acting career and reevaluates her marriage.
"Synopsis" by , In the masterful conclusion to his Invisible Life trilogy, E. Lynn Harris traces the evolving destinies of the beloved characters Nicole Springer and Raymond Tyler, Jr., and an unforgettable cast of lovers, best friends, and potential enemies. Harris moves between the worlds of New York City, where Nicole has recently settled with her husband in order to pursue her dream of returning to the Broadway stage, and Seattle, where a late-night phone call from a United States senator is about to change Raymond's life dramatically. Relationships are seriously challenged and ambitions are put to the test as Harris guides us toward this delicious novel's surprising conclusion. Sexy and heartwarming in equal measure, Abide with Me will thrill the ever-growing legion of E. Lynn Harris's fans with its wit, sensitivity, and high-octane storytelling.
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