Sunday, August 19, 2007

Lois Lenz, Lesbian Secretary

Friday at the bookstore, I picked up Lois Lenz, Lesbian Secretary, by Monica Nolan (New York: Kensington, 2007). The lurid cover, so reminiscent of the 1950s pulps, proclaimed, "Her soul was pure. Her desires were sinful. Her typing was impeccable." How could I resist?

I absolutely devoured this book. It is screamingly hilarious, oozing with purple prose, and sauteed in cheese. In both style and tone, it reminds me very much of my all-time favorite lesbian novels, Mabel Maney's trilogy, The Case of the Not-so-Nice Nurse, The Case of the Good-For-Nothing Girlfriend, and A Ghost in the Closet, featuring Nancy Clue, Cherry Aimless, and the Hardly Boys. If you like that sort of campy humor, then Lois Lenz is for you.

Lois is a small town cheerleader who moves to the big city for an exciting career as a secretary in 1959. Who knew filing could be so enthralling? The clueless, naive heroine stumbles through the labyrinth of office politics, blackmail, stenography, raging lust, Communists, and a mystery that makes me want to ask where Velma and Scooby are hiding, all while making only one single typo. Best lesbian novel I've read in years! It is grand fun with a cherry on top!

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