Giovanni's Room, Paperback Book

Giovanni's Room Paperback

Part of the Penguin Modern Classics series

4.5 out of 5 (2 ratings)


'Exquisite, a feat of fire-breathing, imaginative daring' GuardianDavid, a young American in 1950s Paris, is waiting for his fiancee to return from vacation in Spain.

But when he meets Giovanni, a handsome Italian barman, the two men are drawn into an intense affair.

After three months David's fiancee returns and, denying his true nature, he rejects Giovanni for a 'safe' future as a married man.

His decision eventually brings tragedy. Filled with passion, regret and longing, this story of a fated love triangle has become a landmark of gay writing.

James Baldwin caused outrage as a black author writing about white homosexuals, yet for him the issues of race, sexuality and personal freedom were eternally intertwined.'If Van Gogh was our 19th-century artist-saint, James Baldwin is our 20th-century one' Michael Ondaatje'Baldwin writes of these matters with unusual candour and yet with such dignity and intensity' The New York Times'Violent, excruciating beauty' San Francisco Chronicle


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Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.

Review by

Intense, enlightening, quickly read, mildly disturbing, and surprisingly emotionally engaging no matter how gay or straight you may be. I read this in what is likely to become my life's best 4-hour-long bath, but I can't deny how thankful I was for the cleansing shower that followed. Heartbreaking and touching. Maybe in a few days I'll be able to put together a review that's more than peppered adjectives and hot water.

Review by

Baldwin consistently writes passages in no matter what I read by him (I re-read "Sonny's Blues" recently, too) that absolutely blow me away with their brilliance. This was no exception.

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