Saturday, December 20, 2014

19 Struggles All Fanfiction Addicts Understand by Emma Lord


1. You’re constantly hiding your computer screen from your friends and family.

2. And found out the hard way how dangerous it is to read fanfiction on your phone in public.

3. Everybody thinks you only write/read smut.

4. When in fact you write/read PLOT INTENSIVE smut.

5. It takes forever to find The Perfect Fanfiction for your OTP.

6. And when you get to the best part, you realize it hasn’t been updated since you were basically in MIDDLE SCHOOL.

7. Your other priorities usually take a backseat.


8.You don’t have enough muscles in your face to cringe at new authors who put “A/N”s right in the middle of their chapters.


11. When you’re one of the first ones in a new fandom, the lack of fanfiction for it is debilitating.

12. So you take it upon yourself to shoulder the burden of writing your own.

13. Good reviews are more potent than liquid crack.

14. But people are always asking things like, “Don’t you want to write something you can actually get paid for?”

15. You have genuine trouble not looking at life through fanfiction goggles.

16. You keep thinking a day will come that you’ll grow out of the fanficking habit.

17. But then the writers on your show do THAT THING to your faves, and you get sucked right back in again.

18. So you’ve pretty much resigned yourself to the fact that you will be a fanfiction addict forever.

19. Oh, and also? No matter what you do THE MARAUDERS WILL NEVER GET THEIR OWN MOVIE.

19 Science-Fiction And Fantasy Novels By Women Of Color You Must Read by Anjali Patel

1. Parable of the Sower, by Octavia Butler

Four Walls Eight Windows
In the near future, chaos and anarchy emerge as the U.S. finds itself on the brink of governmental collapse. Lauren Olamina must form alliances to navigate the dangerous landscape as she travels up north to establish a community rooted in her new religion — Earthseed.

2. The Summer Prince, by Alaya Dawn Johnson

Arthur A. Levine Books
In a futuristic Brazillian city, artist June Coast and the Summer King, Enki, team up to fuel rebellions against the government through demonstrations. As June falls in love with Enki, she will have to wrestle with the fact that he, like all Summer Kings, must die at the end of his yearlong term.

3. Who Fears Death, by Nnedi Okorafar

DAW/Penguin
In a post-apocalyptic, future Africa, Onyesonwu, or “Who Fears Death,” is born to the only survivor of a slain Okeke village. Marked by skin and hair the color of sand, Onyesonwu must learn the ways of sorcery and confront her destiny — ending the genocide of her people.

4. Spirits of the Ordinary: A Tale of Casas Grandes, by Kathleen Alcala

Mariner Books
In a tale reminiscent of Allende’s The House of the Spirits, Alcalá blends folklore and spirituality in the story of the Carabajals, a family who practices their Jewish faith in secret along the U.S.-Mexico border.

5. Ash, by Malinda Lo

Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
In this twist on the classic Cinderella tale, Ash seeks refuge from her cruel stepmother by rereading fairytales and dreaming that fairies will come steal her away. After meeting the dark fairy Sidhean, she must choose between her fairy tale dreams coming true and a burgeoning love for the King’s Huntress.

6. The Salt Roads, by Nalo Hopkinson

Warner Books
Spanning centuries and continents, The Salt Roads follows Ezili, the African goddess of love, as she unites and intertwines the stories of three women: Jeanne Duval, an Afro-French entertainer; Mer, an Afro-Caribbean plantation slave and doctor; and Meritet, a Nubian prostitute.

7. A Stranger in Olondria, by Sofia Samatar

Small Beer Press
After his father dies, Jevick must take his place on a selling trip to Olondria, a land where books are common, unlike they are in his home. During the journey he becomes haunted by the ghost of an illiterate girl, and in seeking the help of the Olondrian priests he becomes caught up in a country on the edge of war.

8. Joplin’s Ghost, by Tananarive Due

Washington Square Press
Despite nearly being killed by a piano at her parent’s nightclub when she was ten, Phoenix Smalls is set on pursuing a life of music as an R & B singer. However, after a visit to Scott Joplin’s house in St. Louis, a string of bizarre events leads Phoenix to believe that she might be haunted by the King of Ragtime himself.

9. The Stars Change, by Mary Anne Mohanraj

Circlet Press, Inc.
In this erotic science fiction, author Mary Anne Mohanraj explores sexuality and connection through the University of All Worlds, a school on a South Asian-settled planet that hosts humans, modified humans, and aliens in the midst of what may become an interstellar war.

10. The Antelope Wife, by Louise Erdrich

Harper Perennial
In this magic-infused novel, Erdich follows two Ojibway families, the Shawanos and the Roys, as they live in a city built on what was once an important hunting ground for the Ojibway people — Minneapolis.

11. Almanac of the Dead, by Leslie Marmon Silko

Simon & Schuster
Seese, the former mistress of a cocaine wholesaler, takes a job transcribing a manuscript that prophecies the gruesome end to white rule in America. As the native population rises against hated white masters and magic users work to fulfill the prophecy, the capitalist elite launch a war using cocaine and heroin.

12. The Gilda Stories, by Jewelle Gomez

Firebrand Books
Beginning with her escape from slavery in the 1850s, this centuries-spanning lesbian vampire fantasy follows Gilda through several of her lives in Louisiana, California, Missouri, Massachusetts, New York, and even New Hampshire in 2050.

13. Island of Eternal Love, by Daína Chaviano

Riverhead
Unable to feel at home in her adopted city of Miami, Cuban-born Cecilia seeks refuge in the tales of Amalia, an old woman she meets at a Little Havana bar. Amalia entrances Cecilia with the mythical story of three families from Africa, Spain, and China, which reminds Cecilia of the home she’s been missing.

14. Redemption in Indigo, by Karen Lord

Small Beer Press
After leaving her selfish and gluttonous husband, Pema is presented with a gift from the djombi (undying ones): the Chaos Stick, which allows her to manipulate the subtle forces of the world. Unfortunately, her power attracts the attention of an indigo-skinned djombi who wants the power for himself.

15. So Far from God, by Ana Castillo

W. W. Norton & Company
Set in the small, New Mexico village of Tome, this novel weaves tales of humor, magical realism, hardship, and love through Sofia and her four, fated daughters.

16. Ink, by Sabrina Vourvoulias

Crossed Genres Publications
In the not-too-distant future, temporary workers, permanent residents, and citizens with recent immigration history are marked as “inks” by biometric tattoos. The novel is told through four voices in a small, rural U.S. town: a journalist, an ink, an artist, and the child of a woman who runs a sanitarium-internment center for inks.

17. Orleans, by Sherri L. Smith

Speak
Following a series of hurricanes and a deadly outbreak of Delta fever, people in the Outer States believed life in the Delta to be all but extinct. Fen de la Guerre, one of the few people still in the Delta, must get her leader’s baby to safety after the ambush of her tribe.

18. Salt Fish Girl: A Novel, by Larissa Lai

Thomas Allen Publishers
Told through the voice of a shapeshifting, ageless character who is snake, fish, girl, and woman, this captivating story reaches from nineteenth-century China to the future Pacific Northwest to explore themes of oppression and resistance.

19. The Lost Girl, by Sangu Mandanna

Balzer + Bray
Eva is Amarra’s “echo” — created to replace Amarra if she were to die. From far away, she spends her life studying Amarra’s habits and routines so that if something were to happen, Eva could quickly take her place in India, where echoes are illegal. But when Amarra dies in a car crash at 16, Eva is hardly prepared to risk her life and leave the life she has known.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Bones of Faerie


Release Date: January 26, 2010
Author: Janni Lee Simner
Publisher: Random House
Age Group: YA
Genre: Fantasy
Book Subjects:
War
Abuse
Teens/coming-of-age
Overall: 2/5
 
Book Summary:
Fifteen-year-old Liza travels through war-ravaged territory in a struggle to bridge the faerie and
human worlds and to bring back her mother while learning of her own powers and that magic can be
controlled.

My Review:
The story takes off with Liza narrating how her new born sister was born with silvery hair, and to have such was condemned where she stays. That was the day Liza's mother disappears much too her horror because now she is left to deal with her fathers verbal and physical abuse. One night as she went to go fetch water she runs into a boy name Matthew, whose family died in a fire to the fault of Faeries--supposedly anyway. In the meantime trees start to razzle's up by themselves and attack them left and right as they run, and that's where I stop. Bones of Faerie has been on my to-do-list for over a year and it shouldn’t have been that long, because I didn’t really care for story as I was reading it. I had a hard time placing a time period in the setting, and the characters are more than dry.
That was harsh…I trying not to be an a-hole about my reviews but I’m tired of reading good plots and disappointing writing. She should have delivered the rawness like she did in her short-story Crossing.

 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Lies My Girlfriend Told Me

Release Date: June 10, 2014
Author: Julie Ann Peters
Publisher: Little, Brown
Age Group: YA
Genre: Queer Lit.
Book Subjects:
Lesbianism
Teens
Betrayal
Death
Romance
Overall: 2.5/5

Book Summary:
When her charismatic girlfriend, Swanee, suddenly dies from heart failure, a despairing Alix is shocked to learn that Swanee had been secretly dating another girl, Liana, whom Alix is compelled to meet.

My Review:

Six or seven years ago I was scouting out books to peak my interest and long and behold I come across Keeping You a Secrete, and I loved every word and setting of it being that I wasn’t completely ‘out’ at the time. In my eyes Julie Ann Peters was a god at the time! Maybe I shouldn’t have had my hopes up this go ‘round. Some of the chapters felt a little rushed and few of the sentences read awkwardly to.  I wish she would of put more physical description as well, not that I found what she written confusing I just would have like to visualize what the author was picturing.

Now moving onto the characters…

Although seemingly unrealistic, I liked how Alix and Liana relationship developed into love, but there’s a lot of contradiction with directed feelings. For instance, Alix was pissed off that Swanee lied and she had every right to feel that way, yet she lied to get close to Liana. Now viewers, if you truly pick apart Alix character you’ll find that she just as apathetic as her dead girlfriend. First she abandons her longtime friend Bethany because Swanee convinces her that she was better off. Then there’s Joss (Swanelle little sister) whose feelings gets but on the back burner by her parents and Alix when she needs them most! I wanted a little more back story to Alix girlfriend because there seemed like there was more to tell, but it wasn’t said. Liana came off unauthentic because she seemed too good to be true. Maybe next time Ms. Peters.
 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The Grail


THE GRAIL
by
    Amanda Hemingway     
     
This is the cup the devil made
to hold the lifeblood of a god,
the cup from which the phantoms sprang
that followed where his story trod.
They wrought it in the Underworld -
an older world, a younger day -
before the God of Gods was born
and angels stole the cup away.
They filled it with eternal life,
undying death, unsleeping dreams;
its draught unsealed the shadow-gate
between the World that Is, and Seems.
This is the cup to loose the soul,
the blood that sets the legends free,
and we who dare to drink must taste,
each in ourselves, eternity.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Wind Child

Release Date: April 23, 1999
Author: Shirley R. Murphy
Illustrator: Leo & Diane Dillion
Publisher: HarperCollins
Age Group: Children's Lit.
Genre: Magical Realism
Book Subjects:
Wind elements
Romance
Loneliness
Adoption
Designing
Overall: 4/5

Book Summary:
The story opens up with a [wind] elemental traveling from the east in search of a wife, and to his luck he finds one who is human and not afraid of his wild nature. Afterwards, they get married and he builds her a house and has a child named Resshie, but unfortunately the mother dies and the grieving father leaves his new born in the care of an old village woman.  Resshie then grows up to be wild and curious about her surroundings, including who her father could be.

Now a woman she begins to embark her adventures as (fashion/interior) designer. But there is one problem, there’s no man to keep her company.
Ah hah, she [Resshie] comes up with an idea. If she cannot find her match she will just have to make her one. Her first attempt is making Summer out of rose vines, heather, wild oats, corn silk, and flowers. But within a couple of days he began to wither.

This time she another vessel, Ormond, out of sheep wool, feather gulls, horse hair.
He was more durable and able to help Resshie around her house, but he to whiter. Moving on with her life she meets a young prince who has heard of her work, who challenges her to make a tapestry reflecting the sky, and she succeed and captured the heart of the prince who realized she wasn’t fully human, and then took her back to her kingdom.


My Review:
If it weren't for the illustrators I don't think I would ever have been introduced to a fine piece of work such as this. The underlining of this story goes far deeper than a young woman finding her prince, it is also about going through internal struggles in finding yourself amongst your surroundings. Doesn’t matter how successful you are in your line of work—you know Resshie being a seamstress and all, it won’t make you happy. The second moral of the story is learning to embrace the fact that you are different and being conformable in your own skin.     

 

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Sudeuced by moonlight

File:LaurelKHamilton SeducedByMoonlight.jpgRelease Date: February 3, 2004
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Publisher: Ballantine
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Age group: MA
Book Subjects:
Politics
Sexual Advantages
Power
Reawakening's
Death
Faeries
Overall:3/5

Book Summary:
When her aunt, the Queen of Air and Darkness, becomes obsessed with securing an heir to the throne of Fairie, Meredith spends unfruitful evenings with the Queen's immortal guards and finds her magical powers evolving in unexpected ways.



My Review:
Well, I give Laurell credit for knowing how to keep the readers on their toes, that's for sure. It's like reading a modern day Game of Thrones but with faeries. But I do have this one niche that I can't seem to shake when I reading the Merry Gentry series, it's like a love/hate relationship. I feel like Merry has been nothing more than a commodity for sexual breeding since the first volume, and she can't do anything of the little free will that she does have because it'll cost her life and the love she shares with her guards. She has to do everything to sustain the little time of alliance she has with the goblins, she has to put up with people trying to kill her, and making a baby to claim the throne. It's...a hot mess! At the same time I commend Merry because she's doing everything she has to do in order to survive. So that is my main dissatisfaction with the story, other than that the differentiating politics, culture, and gender roles between the humans and fairies is quite intriguing. Can't wait to see what happens next.