This book instantly caught my attention. Mainly because I live close to the area of the country the book was written about. Plus, the cultural lines between central Kentucky and southern Ohio are very similar.
Here's an intro for you to check out:
"They’re doing their makeup in a pickup truck as you step into that small-town gay bar and take a seat at the catwalk, where the queens striding down the line are fierce, and all because they have to be in these parts. It ain’t all about the coasts and a couple of Midwest strongholds anymore. Now there’s "Who the Hell is Rachel Wells?," the debut collection from J.R. Greenwell, a one-time headlining female illusionist in Dixie who now devotes his time to writing fiction and plays in central Kentucky.
The title story kicks off the anthology, where a whole lot of people are about to get in a whole mess of trouble when Danny, a little boy with a taste for cosmetics and J.C. Penney’s catalogues, discovers a purse full of drag and trinkets that’s been left for the dogs near a rest stop off I-65 at the Kentucky-Indiana border. Danny’s mother Linda sifts through the purse and finds a note: "The contents in this bag belong to Rachel Wells... Take care of these items and give them a good home..."
Here is more of the review from the Edge in Boston:
"A slew of bizarre stories , some hilarious, some heartrending, and almost all of them as original as an Ionesco play with a good dose of David Lynch trompe l’oeil thrown in. "Silver Pumps and a Loose Nut" explores what happens when drag culture meets the criminal underworld and how a diva can still come out looking like Botticelli’s Venus -- or, better yet, Ursula Andress in "Dr. No" -- in the aftermath. Make sure your Puffs box is full when you read about the trials of the young gay and trans characters in "The Scent of Honeysuckle," "Spaghetti Kisses," and "A Colony of Barbies," as the protagonists attempt to stake whatever meager claim they can in a world that’s frozen them out. "Watch Me Walk" gives us the other side of the struggle when two gay seniors contemplate falling in love in a world that seems to belong to the young. "Starting Rumors" shows what happens when a bitter queen and his irascible hag at work stir the turd over lunch with the wrong colleague."
And yes kids, you did see the fleeting "trans" word even tossed out once in the review. Who said there wasn't change in the gay community? (Actually there is) thanks to girls like Pat.
Go here for more.