AWARDS, HONORS: Los Angeles Times Book Prize, for Love Enter.
(Under name Paul Kafka) Love Enter (novel), Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 1993.
Dupont Circle (novel), Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 2001.
SIDELIGHTS: Paul Kafka-Gibbons is a book reviewer and a professional dancer who has also published two novels: Love Enter, written under the name Paul Kafka, and Dupont Circle. In the first novel, "love" is the password used by medical intern Dan Schoenfeld when he sends e-mails from the hospital computer. Through his mails, the reader looks back to his past as a dancer in Paris, and his relationship with his roommate, Beck, and two young American women, Bou and Margot. "Through luxuriant language and an aphrodisiacal Parisian backdrop, Kafka keenly conveys Dan's nostalgia," wrote a Publishers Weekly contributor. While the e-mails convey Dan's emotional life and his colorful past, the mundane reality of hospital work is also well-drawn in the book.
In 1998, Kafka-Gibbons went to Vermont to hear summary arguments in the historic case that declared the civil unions of same-sex couples to be legal. This served as the inspiration for his novel Dupont Circle. Set in the near future in Washington, D.C., Dupont Circle "harkens back to the comedies of manners written by people like Jane Austen," commented Rick R. Reed in Lambda Book Report. It concerns a same-sex couple who act as parents to a young relative. Other plot threads involve a landmark gay-marriage case and a heterosexual May-December romance. A Kirkus Reviews contributor wrote that Kafka-Gibbons "sets the scene . . . with all the right detail, from trendy bookshops and restaurants to lifestyle accessories." A Publishers Weekly writer found that Kafka-Gibbons's "alternative family scenarios . . . breathe sweetness and charm." Reed characterized Dupont Circle as "an old-fashioned kind of book, with a very modern-day slant," and advised: "Read it for its wit, its warmth, and the author's commitment to telling a good story, one whose message resounds long after one has read the last page."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, May 1, 2001, Michael Spinella, review of Dupont Circle, p. 1665.
Dallas Morning News, September 5, 2001, Campbell Geeslin, review of Dupont Circle. Kirkus Reviews, March 15, 2001, review of DupontCircle, p. 353.
Lambda Book Report, May, 2001, Rick R. Reed, review of Dupont Circle, p. 17.
Library Journal, May 1, 1993, Rosellen Brewer, review of Love Enter, p. 116.
New York Times Book Review, June 24, 2001, Karen Karbo, "The Capital Gang," p. 17.
Publishers Weekly, March 22, 1993, review of LoveEnter, p. 70; April 23, 2001, Charles Hix, interview with Kafka-Gibbons, p. 40; May 7, 2001, review of Dupont Circle, p. 221.
Southern Humanities Review, winter, 1995, Daniel Robinson, review of Love Enter, p. 96.
Washington Post Book World, May 10, 2001, Jonathan Yardley, "The Hubbub of the City," p. C2.*
Paul Kafka-Gibbons's Home Page,http://home.comcast.net/~kafka-gibbons (November 10, 2004).*