Having survived the plague that took so many of his friends and lovers, Michael has learned to embrace the random pleasures of life, the tender alliances that sustain him in the hardest of times. This novel is about the act of growing older joyfully and the everyday miracles that somehow make that possible.
In this funny, poignant and unflinchingly honest memoir, one of the world''s best-loved storytellers explains how he evolved from a conservative son of the Old South into a gay rights pioneer whose novels inspired millions to claim their own lives. It is a journey that leads him from the racism and misogyny of mid-century North Carolina to a homoerotic Navy initiation ceremony in the jungles of Vietnam to an awkward conversation about girls with President Richard Nixon in the Oval Office of the White House. After losing his virginity to another man ''on the very spot where the first shots of the Civil War were fired'', Maupin packs his earthly belongings into his Opel GT (including a portrait of a Confederate ancestor) and heads west to that strangest of strange lands: San Francisco in the early 1970''s.>