forbidden fruit: illicit love in literature

In his novel The Stranger's Child, just published by Picador, Man Booker Prize-winner Alan Hollinghurst joins a long line of authors who have tackled taboo relationships in their work.

Hollinghurst talks to We Love This Book in our inaugural issue about liking characters, writing sex scenes and the vocabulary of sexuality. You can read a sneak preview here.

While, in keeping with our romantic theme, we pick our top 10 novels about forbidden love affairs; Betty Herbert, author of a tell-all blog about what happens when married sex goes wrong, talks about why she wrote her book The 52 Seductions; and Isabel Ashdown writes about her new novel Hurry Up and Wait, which follows a young girl's love affair with her best friend's dad.

Meanwhile Lisa Appignanesi, author of All About Love: Anatomy of an Unruly Emotion, explores why we are so shocked by adultery—yet continue to indulge in it.

And for those of a more literary persuasion, author Louisa Levene explores what's really going on in the British Library stacks. You may be surprised . . .