English author Radclyffe Hall's groundbreaking 1928 novel, the first piece of lesbian literature in the English language. Widely condemned on its release, and banned for decades in Britain on the grounds of "obscenity", the book is now recognised as a classic.

The story follows the ComingOfAge of [[GenderBlenderName Stephen]] [[OverlyLongName Mary Olivia Gertrude Gordon]], who from an early age fails to conform to society's expectations of an upper-class Englishwoman, and gradually comes to realise that she is in fact an "invert". From the rolling hills of her countryside home to the literary society of London, from the salons of GayParee to the trenches of the [[WorldWarI First World War]], Stephen struggles to find love and purpose in a world cruelly hostile to her "unnatural" desires.

!!This work contains examples of:

* TheAlcoholic: Wanda.
* AnguishedDeclarationOfLove: A variation. Stephen's anguished declaration is not addressed to the object of her romantic affections, but to her mother, when she passionately claims that her love for Angela is as good and true and real as the love any man could have for a woman.
* ArmorPiercingQuestion: When Stephen is musing on the life she would like to live with Angela, the latter interrupts her by simply asking;
--> "Could you marry me, Stephen?"
* BiTheWay: As it turns out, [[spoiler: Mary]].
* [[CallingTheOldManOut Calling The Old Woman Out]]: Stephen gives Anna Gordon a ''glorious'' epistolary calling out just before she moves to Paris.
* CastFullOfGay: More so in the latter half of the novel.
* CrisisOfFaith: Adolphe Blanc lost his Jewish faith for a time, unable to understand why any loving God would have created him homosexual.
* DrivenToSuicide: [[spoiler: Jamie shoots herself after Barbara succumbs to her illness.]]
* GayParee: The setting of most of the latter half of the book.
* {{Gayngst}}: Even more [[JustifiedTrope Justified]] than usual, given the time period.
* GenderBlenderName: The female protagonist, Stephen Gordon, as well as Jamie, Pat, Dickie....
* GentleGiant: Stephen is a RareFemaleExample. She's described as very tall, broad-shouldered, and muscular, but is also painfully self-conscious, and despite her prowess in hunting, her compassion for animals drives her to give it up.
* [[IHaveNoSon I Have No Daughter]]: Anna Gordon coldly banishes Stephen from Morton when she discovers she is gay.
* IllGirl: Small and sickly Barbara.
* IncompatibleOrientation: Quite a few cases of straight men falling for lesbians. Martin Hallam falls for Stephen, Pedro develops a massive crush on Mary Llewellyn, and Barbara was wooed by a young man in her hometown in BonnieScotland.
* LikeBrotherAndSister: Stephen considers her relationship with Martin to be like that of "two brothers". Unfortunately for both of them, he comes to disagree.
* LipstickLesbian: Barbara and Mary, [[spoiler: though the latter turns out to be bisexual]].
* MasculineGirlFeminineBoy: ButchLesbian Stephen and CampGay Jonathan Brockett occasionally have this dynamic, though in Jonathan's case it's difficult to tell if his mannerisms are an [[ObfuscatingStupidity affectation]], and if so, to what extent.
* MostWritersAreWriters: Reflected by Stephen's chosen career.
* NiceJewishBoy: Adolphe is described as "gentle and learned", and is easily the nicest person in Valérie's set.
* OpenMindedParent: Phillip Gordon, phenomenally so for a Victorian. He realises that his daughter is gay long before she herself does, and his only reaction is dread of the persecution he knows she will suffer because of it. He resolves to protect her as best he can by arming her with an excellent education, ensuring she will be able to forge her own path in life.
* PrettyLittleHeadshots: [[spoiler: Jamie's suicide.]]
* RagtagBunchOfMisfits: The patrons of lesbian salon hostess Valérie Seymour, with whom Stephen falls in while living in GayParee (no [[IncrediblyLamePun pun]] intended).
* UpperClassTwit: Several, with Roger Antrim being a particularly bad offender.
* WorldWarI: Book Four charts Stephen's exploits as part of an ambulance unit in France.