Thursday, May 16, 2019

Book Review: 'Clio Rising' by Paula Martinac

Clio Rising by Paula Martinac

‘Are you trying to make up for invading my privacy?’

North Carolina author Paula Martinac has published five novels as well as an anthology of short stories and three nonfiction books on lesbian and gay culture and politics and has been honored with the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Fiction and other significant recognitions. In addition to her books, articles and short stories, Paula is a playwright whose plays have enjoyed wide performances. She teaches creative writing at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte and is a writing coach for Charlotte Center for the Literary Arts. 

Paula takes a formidable historic figure – the enigmatic Clio Hartt, an early advocate of and author of lesbian fiction while living a life that spanned from the raucous twenties to the mid 1980s – and places that figure in New York where she is encountered by heroine Livvie Bliss, a fresh young writer whose assignment to work with Clio results in a fascinating mystery unfolding. The majesty of Paula’s writing transforms this excellent novel into not only a visit to realms of lesbian history, but also a magnetic exploration of an at times strange relationship between two women from disparate eras. 

Composed with satisfying dollops of comic relief, sensitive tragic passages, mystery, secrets, and well-sculpted associate characters, CLIO RISING can be enjoyed and absorbed on many levels – not the least of which is a rather profound impression of the gifts of Paula Martinac. Highly Recommended. 

Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.

Order it on Amazon today.
Two kings. Two princes. One queen. The true story of five aristocrats separated by time, culture, and circumstance -- all of them bound to the United States by accidents of history and left to hope for a tomorrow better than today. Prepare for a vision of the American Dream as few others have ever seen it.