When I was a teenager living in a small town in central West Virginia in the mid-1990s, I often felt alone and ostracized. I dared not come out of the closet as a lesbian, for fear of physical violence directed my way. One day in a thrift store, I came across a beat-up paperback copy of Rubyfruit Jungle, a coming-of-age story set partially in the South and partly in New York City, and featuring an openly gay woman. To say that it changed or saved my life would be hyperbole, but it sure did lessen my loneliness and help to make life more bearable until I was able to escape to a liberal arts college. This is a classic in LGBT literature, from an author who has never shied away from boldly living her life the way she wants to live it, regardless of how others might feel about that. And the book is not stodgy — it's a good story and at times laugh-out-loud funny. Recommended By Candice B., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
“The rare work of fiction that has changed real life . . . If you don’t yet know Molly Bolt—or Rita Mae Brown, who created her—I urge you to read and thank them both.”—Gloria Steinem
Winner of the Lambda Literary Pioneer Award | Winner of the Lee Lynch Classic Book Award
A landmark coming-of-age novel that launched the career of one of this country’s most distinctive voices, Rubyfruit Jungle remains a transformative work more than forty years after its original publication. In bawdy, moving prose, Rita Mae Brown tells the story of Molly Bolt, the adoptive daughter of a dirt-poor Southern couple who boldly forges her own path in America. With her startling beauty and crackling wit, Molly finds that women are drawn to her wherever she goes—and she refuses to apologize for loving them back. This literary milestone continues to resonate with its message about being true to yourself and, against the odds, living happily ever after.
“You can’t fully know—or enjoy—how much the world has changed without reading this truly wonderful book.” Andrew Tobias, author of The Best Little Boy in the World
“Powerful...a truly incredible book...I found myself laughing hysterically, then sobbing uncontrollably just moments later.” The Boston Globe
“Groundbreaking.” The New York Times
About the Author
Rita Mae Brown is the bestselling author of the Sneaky Pie Brown series; the Sister Jane series; the Runnymede books, including Six of One and the forthcoming Cakewalk; A Nose for Justice and Murder Unleashed; Rubyfruit Jungle; and In Her Day, as well as several other novels. An Emmy-nominated screenwriter and a poet, Brown lives in Afton, Virginia.