Radical Love

Radical Love

Summary

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Welcome to England, 1809. London is a violent, intolerant city, exhausted by years of war, beset by soaring prices and political tensions. By day, John Church preaches on the radical possibilities of love to a multicultural, working-class congregation in Southwark. But by night, he crosses the river to the secret and glamorous world of a gay molly house on Vere Street, where ordinary men reinvent themselves as funny, flirtatious drag queens and rent boys cavort with labourers and princes alike. There, Church becomes the first minister to offer marriages between men, at enormous risk.

Everything changes when Church meets the unworldly and free-thinking Ned, part of a group of African activist abolitionists who attend his chapel. The two bond over their broken childhoods, and Church falls obsessively in love with Ned's tender nature. In a fragile, colourful secret world under threat, Church's love for Ned takes him to the edge of reason.

Based on the incredible true story of one of the most important events in queer history, Radical Love is a sensuous and prescient story about gender and sexuality, and how the most vulnerable survive in dangerous times.

©2023 Neil Blackmore (P)2023 Penguin Audio

Reviews

  • Neil Blackmore re-imagines an astounding story of gay men in London 200 years ago and under the pain of their betrayal and injustice, he uncovers loyalty and above all, love. I relished every page.
    SIR IAN MCKELLEN

About the author

Neil Blackmore

Neil Blackmore is the author of five novels. His work has been acclaimed for its radical redrawing of the historical fiction form and the parameters of queer historical fiction. His third novel, The Intoxicating Mr Lavelle, was shortlisted for the Polari Prize for LGBTQ+ Fiction, and he has been celebrated as 'one of the most original voices in historical fiction today' (The Times). He lives in London.
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