For those that are science fiction fans, a worthy thing to note is that today the second volume of Felice Picano's trilogy City On A Star released.
Piano is well known as a gay author (with nineteen novels and short stories, as well as poetry and dramas), and most recently for being co-author of the updated version of the classic The New Joy of Gay Sex.The first City On A Star volume, subtitled Dryland's End, has the sweep of Asimov's Foundation Trilogy (inter-stellar empires, star travel, conquest and failure, etc.) and the unique story elements of Herbert's Dune (power politics, medieval family structures, semi-religious orders, etc.). Like Dune, the semi-religious order is a matriarchy striving to be the interstellar power player, but coincidental with our own current events, the story is built around responding to a pandemic--though it was written in 1994 and released in 2004.
Given that Pisano is such a prolific gay writer, it should come as no surprise that human sexuality is part of the story line, and that gay sex is a normal part of life... but the unique wrinkle is that gay sex become an unexpected vehicle for resolution of the problems that the empires face.
That's all I'll say, but here's what QueerSciFi had to say:A rebellion of intelligent Cybernetic servants has left the Females of the galaxy virtually sterile, crippling the controlling political body the Matriarchy. The race is on to find a solution, but will it be enough to save the Matriarchy as other galactic authorities attempt to dominate them using sabotage and all-out war? Dryland's End is Felice Picano's science fiction adventure for the new millennium. The novel touches on many of today's most controversial subjects, such as interracial relationships, gender conflicts, gender identity, and same-sex pairings-and views them with a lens toward the future.
If you haven't read Dryland's End, be sure to read it first. Volume Two of City On A Star is subtitled, The Betrothal At Usk, and the Kindle version is available today at Amazon here.