CONSIDERING VENUS
D. Gisele Isaac
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  • ISBN: 1885778-42-2

First-time Antiguan novelist D. Gisele Isaac explores the almost-unacknowledged issue of lesbianism among Caribbean women and adds to it the complication of a heterosexual perspective.

Considering Venus asks, "What happens when girlfriends become more than friends?"

Two forty-something women meet again 25 years after high school: Lesley, an African-American, is straight, recently widowed with three children, and looking for a friend, while Cass is Antiguan, gay and looking for love.

Cass finds all that she is looking for in Lesley; but would telling her the truth be a confession of love or a betrayal of their friendship? When Cass does tell her, Lesley runs away, denying her own feelings and conflicted about the whole idea of women loving women. She knows that she is not gay and fears being labeled that way.

Her return chronicles the many ways in which women form attachments and how friendship and love are interwoven into a unique TYPE of relationship. Lesley learns that labels are simply society's way of expressing its prejudices, and love, ultimately, is what really matters, regardless of its gender.

On the other hand, Cass experiences the exhilaration that accompanies finding her soul mate, even as she experiences the pain and distance that come with loving a straight woman.

In Antigua and in New York, family members and their stories are woven into the novel as each woman becomes a presence in the other's life. In Lesley's case, however, her children are not told the true nature of the relationship. The children's discovery of what the women are to each other violently forces the issue to a head, as everyone involved looks at his or her own fears and prejudices and determines where to go from there.

Considering Venus attempts to shatter stereotypes and portray gays and those who love them as they are: only people. People whose lives are no different from the mainstream. People who work, pay bills, love their families, and worry about growing old.

The novel is not racial, not strident, nor political. There is nothing sensationalistic about Considering Venus, except that two people can still meet, fall in love and determine to live as happily as they can.

No woman with a best friend can afford to miss Considering Venus.

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