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Home > Book News

Secret Lives of Prominent People Revealed in New Book, 'Queers in History,' From Benbella Books

WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif., Sept. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Did you know that Abraham Lincoln slept with his male bodyguard in the White House when Mrs. Lincoln was away? Did you know that Joan Crawford and Marilyn Monroe had a one-night stand at Crawford's home? Or that Leonardo da Vinci was sent to prison twice for "same-sex" offenses? Did you know that Angelina Jolie fell in love with one of her female co-stars?

"Queers in History," a new book by Keith Stern, documents these facts and thousands of others in the most comprehensive collection of true stories about historical figures who were gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender. Many contemporary personalities are included too.

"I started working on this in 1993," Stern says. "I was curious about which famous people might have been gay, and thought with some effort I might find out about 50 or 60. Now, after years of research, I have gathered 900 amazing but true tales about some of the people who have shaped our world."

As of today, Stern's "Queers in History" (Benbella Books), is available on, Barnes & Noble, Borders and in bookstores across the nation. The 587-page trade paperback features a foreword by Sir Ian McKellen ("Lord of the Rings") and a striking cover design by Chip Kidd.

"If you follow celebrities on TMZ and in People magazine," Stern says, "you'll find plenty of scoops in 'Queers in History.' Lindsay Lohan, Jodie Foster, George Michael, and Perez Hilton are all in the book."

"If you're the kind of history or genealogy buff who loves a good show on A&E Biography or The History Channel, you'll be amazed to find out what's usually left out of the standard biographies. All the facts are uncensored in 'Queers in History,' which features prominent people from 2450 BC up to today," Stern adds.

"Fearless teachers, and students, will find the facts in 'Queers in History' to help them better understand some of the most widely discussed issues of our time such as gay marriage, gays in the military and gay civil rights," Stern says.

"The book makes a great gift for your friends whether gay or straight. Anyone interested in celebrities, scandals, secrets, or sex will find something fascinating in these stories. Valentine's Day, birthdays, and anniversaries are great 'Queers in History' occasions. For young people seeking role models, 'Queers in History' provides an index by profession: actors, writers, musicians, filmmakers, soldiers, athletes, and even religious leaders who were gay or lesbian," says Stern. Many of the articles are illustrated with rare photographs and portraits.

According to Stern, "A friend told me that he put this book on his coffee table at a party and in 15 minutes everyone was talking about it. It's a 'wow' book that takes only a few seconds to elicit a reaction after someone picks it up. It's great for browsing but as one person said after finding it hard to put down, 'Reading the stories in Queers in History is like eating gay potato chips. You can't read just one.'"





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