The Delicate Vice
Allison is torn between her love for Lydia and settling down with Cal.
A paperback original. This book was published as a mass-market paperback without a hardcover printing.
Is Part Of
This book was reprinted in 1963 under the title The Delicate Vice.
Lesbian Pulp Fiction Type
Ratings and/or Awards
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NODL Evaluation Report
"UNnatural [sic] is the story of a lesbian who seduces her brother's wife in order that she might break up his marriage."
More information about contested books
Contested in the U.S.A and Canada by the National Organization for Decent Literature. The book was listed in the NODL Newsletter from 10/5/60 until June 1961, and then again from 7/16/62 until March 1963.
Cover, Front Text
A vivid and searching novel of forbidden love in the twilight world of the third sex
Cover, Back Text
Allison loved Lydia. She loved her so much that sometimes she thought it was wrong. Human beings weren't supposed to love each other so much, were they? There must be something sinful about a love so strong it blotted out everything else. Lydia was Allison's whole life... until one night she went to a wild bohemian party and met Cal Staton. He certainly seemed interested... and everyone was always telling her to settle down... but Cal Staton was a man, and men had hurt her so much. Perhaps she would be better off staying with Lydia, who turned the world away when she took her in her arms. Lydia, who could make her melt with a glance... and climb to the peaks of ecstasy with a just a caress.
Cover Art Description
Towards the bottom right of the image, a blonde with hair to her shoulders stands, seen from her chest up. She stands at a three-quarter angle facing right of the reader, and her head is slightly tilted in the same direction. Her right hand is raised to her chest level, holding a lit cigarette. She is wearing a strapless white dress that shows her cleavage, and a layered necklace with gems and stones. Her eyes are half-closed and look towards her right, and she is smiling slightly. Behind her in the background, the figure of another woman, a brunette, can be seen standing naked, in the process of removing a white blouse which is already over her head. She stands next to what looks like a closet with red doors. Her back is lit by hard light coming from the top left of the image. Below the cover art, there is a yellow stripe with a brief description of the novel.
Cover Art Style
Cover Art People
Cover Art Gaze
This book was listed as objectionable by the Rhode Island Commission to Encourage Morality in Youth
Britain, Sloane, “Unnatural,” The Lesbian Pulp Fiction Collection @ Mount Saint Vincent University, accessed December 2, 2023, https://msvulpf.omeka.net/items/show/561.