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Publisher's Summary

Buried for decades, the Up Stairs Lounge tragedy has only recently emerged as a catalyzing event of the gay liberation movement. In revelatory detail, Robert W. Fieseler chronicles the tragic event that claimed the lives of 31 men and one woman on June 24, 1973, at a New Orleans bar, the largest mass murder of gays until 2016.

Relying on unprecedented access to survivors and archives, Fieseler creates an indelible portrait of a closeted, blue-collar gay world that flourished before an arsonist ignited an inferno that destroyed an entire community. The aftermath was no less traumatic - families ashamed to claim loved ones, the Catholic Church refusing proper burial rights, the city impervious to the survivors' needs - revealing a world of toxic prejudice that thrived well past Stonewall. Yet the impassioned activism that followed proved essential to the emergence of a fledgling gay movement. Tinderbox restores honor to a forgotten generation of civil-rights martyrs.

©2018 Robert W. Fieseler (P)2018 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books

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Excellent and Informative

This book is very thoroughly researched and very well written. The reader does and incredible job creating shock, outrage, and pathos.

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Amazing!!

Robert did an amazing job with this book! I learned about it from the podcast Beyond Bourbon Street and had to hear it myself! Having been born and raised in the 90s, I had never heard of the Upstairs Lounge. This book brought to light major issues in the way the case was handled and is still handled today. The legality of how it was handled was brought to light and shows you what needs to be done to prevent something of this magnitude from happening again!