The Future Was Color

The Lavender Scare looms over the events portrayed in Patrick Nathan's exquisite second novel, The Future Was Color, like one of those unspeakable horrors that Hollywood screenwriter George Curtis conjures to threaten the lives of ordinary, freedom-loving Americans in his cheaply made science fiction flicks. George lives a meek existence in the summer of 1956, humbly tapping out new scripts in a sweltering office that he shares with two or three others, depending on who "either quit or disappeared or got blacklisted" in the stifling era of McCarthyism.

Privately, however, George is a quiet sort of renegade. A Hungarian immigrant to the United States, he has witnessed the rise of fascism and the cost of war. He longs to write something of greater political consequence than the black-and-white movies that studios lace with their pro-war propaganda. He also longs for the touch of his colleague Jack Turner. When friend and actress Madeline Morrison invites George to be a writer in residence at her Malibu estate, the opportunities for greater fulfillment begin to unfurl before him.

Nathan (Image ControlSome Hell) writes with the eloquence of a nimble mind working at the height of his powers. Gripping from the first sentence, The Future Was Color braves the atomic era with a canny allegiance to human tenderness and connection. George's story is one of resilience, and Nathan's Hollywood is sure to dazzle any readers who were captivated by Anthony Marra's Mercury Pictures Presents. Profound, life-affirming, and splendidly seductive, The Future Was Color deserves to become a new lodestar in the ever-expanding constellation of gay literature. --Dave Wheeler, senior editor, Shelf Awareness

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