Holly Valero grew up on a Pennsylvanian sheep farm and faced adulthood at only 19 when she started working. Her life had been the complete opposite of normal. Paired with the 1986 LGBTQIA+ riots and the political wreck caused by the AIDS epidemic, Valero knew there was more to life than meets the eye. “Lesbians resented gay men for dragging them into a fresh spotlight of national hatred. Gay men resented lesbians for wasting their time with any other issue but the life-or-death issue of AIDS.” In her pursuit to find a voice for herself and for her community, Valero went to New Hampshire and that is where her story began — fighting for the lesbian community's due rights and equality, through her words.
This collection of stories will give readers an idea of what the community went through between 1986 and 1993. From national news to her personal discoveries and wonderment, this book contains details of what the then outlawed lesbians went through. Chapters like “Dropping By and Coming Out to Your Grandparents and The Only Thing We Have to Fear Is ... Lesbians?” will most likely release a deluge of emotions in readers as they learn how the writer dealt with life-changing experiences.
Holly Valero’s story is nothing short of inspirational and uplifting, and Tales of an American Lesbian —The Best of the Straight & Narrow: 1986-1993 speaks of the magnitude of the LQBTQIA+ community’s struggles and fights for justice. The author did a remarkable job of sharing a strong message without losing her befitting sense of humor. With the chronological order of the stories and an impeccable writing style, this book will prove to be a splendid read —not only for those in the LGBTQIA+ community but also for those seeking to learn more about them. It is immersive, laced with details and commentaries that bring to light the cultural landscapes of the time.