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Eirin, Siang, JoeMutt, Herman and I thought of a nice new topic for the forum while we were having lunch last Saturday:

What good novels do you know about living with HIV/aids? Or which personal documents?



This does not relate *directly* to hiv/aids literature, but it does tangentially: James Jones' The Thin Red Line, recently made into a (very beautiful) movie of the same name. It is a meditation not on a specific war (think of it as a war on hiv, if you will) but on the fragile nature of life (including your ostensible enemy's), the necessity of acknowledging pain and loss, the beauty of the natural world and its complex yet comforting order, and the transitory quality of all human feeling. Terrence Mallick directed and wrote the movie.

Otherwise, I would recommend Andrew Holleran's and Edmund White's brillaint collections of short stories, as well as the novel Geoffrey Wyman's Was. Michael Cunningham's A Home at the End of the World (made into a lousy movie, don't bother) was quite good (and quite controversial) in that it suggests that gay men must learn to care for one another in sickness and not rely on cultural outsiders. Paul Monette's Borrowed Time is quite powerful (though I liked his Becoming a Man much better).

Not quite an AIDS novel, but written by a man living with HIV, is Darren Greer's Still Life with June (concerning a man working in a rehab). It's a wonderful novel, and if you are not living in Canada, you will likely have to order it as it is a small Canadian publisher.

Finally, Hervé Guibert's A l'ami qui ne m'a pas sauvé la vie, available in English as To the Friend Who Could Not Save My Life.

A good resource is For some academic chapters, see


A bit of a bump.  I personally haven't read anything (outside of the internet) on HIV.  One of my favorite authors is James Baldwin.  I don't think he ever addressed HIV/AIDS in his writing (he died in 87), but I wish he would have.  It probably would have been a great read.

cliff, i havent read any of Baldwin since college. I remember really enjoying his writing.  I think "beale street" and "mountain".  I forgot he died so young.
I read so much on this website, I dont think I could handle anymore unless it was humorous.


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