Edmund White
Forgetting Elena
The Joy of Gay Sex
Nocturnes for the King of Naples
States of Desire: Travels in Gay America
A Boy's Own Story
The Beautiful Room is Empty
Caracole
The Darker Proof: Stories from a Crisis
The Faber Book of Gay Short Fiction
Genet: A Biography
The Burning Library
Our Paris: Sketches from Memory
Skinned Alive
The Farewell Symphony
Marcel Proust
The Married Man
Loss Within Loss: Artists in the Age of AIDS
The Flâneur
Fanny, A Fiction
Arts and Letters
My Lives: An Autobiography
Terra Haute
Chaos
Hotel de Dream
Rimbaud: The Double Life of a Rebel
City Boy
Sacred Monsters
Jack Holmes & His Friend
Inside a Pearl: My Years in Paris

 

Forgetting Elena (1973)

Combining glittering wit, an atmosphere dense in social paranoia, and a breathtaking elegance and precision of language, Edmund White's first novel suggests a hilarious apotheosis of the comedy of manners.

For, on the privileged island community where Forgetting Elena is set, manners are everything. Or so it seems to White's excruciatingly self-conscious young narrator, who desperately wants to be accepted in this world, where everything from one's bathroom habits to the composition of "spontaneous" poetry is subject to rigid—if unstated—conventions. But no sooner has he begun to intuit the island's Byzantine codes than the mysterious and charismatic Elena is urging him to transgress them, with results that are at once shocking and wickedly funny.

 

 

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