whining

Mar. 30th, 2012 01:22 am
liri: a quacking duck in great distress (Ahiru)
A classmate on the internship discussion board made a post about compiling a rec list for children's (or more specifically, middle-grade) fiction that pushed ALL my buttons on the problem-novel issue, and I'm trying to figure out how best to word my objections to the rationale behind the list she described.  Because my kneejerk reaction, "oh for FUCK'S SAKE not THIS again, would it kill you to include ONE book that might make somebody laugh?" is not really professional or appropriate.

My parents are going to be in town for a visit.  Hence the icon.  I love my family, but they drive me batshit.  And this is going to be My Birthday (Observed) so it's also dinner with my in-laws, because I am surrounded by people who are determined to celebrate my special occasions whether I like it or not (see also: Weddingweddingwedding) and then next weekend is Passover (yeah, it lasts a week, but "go to in-law's house and be forced to read out loud by the man who allegedly loves me" is the part of Passover that's relevant to me) and I just want to spend my weekends at home, trawling Pixiv and writing.  /whine
liri: Reading a fantasy novel (reading)
I hadn't really had anything to add on the #yesGayYA thing, but I keep seeing people talk about buying books, voting with your wallet, etc.  I just wanted to pluck out one element of this that I think is getting lost (or I could just not be reading the right sources...)

On the third page of comments on[livejournal.com profile] cleolinda's post, she points out something that I haven't seen very prominently elsewhere, which was one of the first things I thought of as well: It still counts if you get the books from libraries.  Libraries track circulation numbers for many reasons, and they buy materials in response to both evident demand (i.e. circulation) and patron requests, though obviously there are budget constraints.  They also weed books that don't circulate, though weeding policies vary.  You can vote with your attention rather than  your wallet in this case.
liri: old books (books)
Via [personal profile] starlady , and probably my NPR-junkie husband once he gets home, the NPR Top 100 SF/F books meme.

Cut for a list of 100 books and some thoughts on same. )

This has inspired me to dig out Cyteen and give it another try, and finally rectify my failure to read the Earthsea books, so that's probably all to the good.
liri: A kitten sleeping peacefully (sleepy)
And now the book has started bringing the delicious, delicious OMGWTF. )

All this was written last night.  Today, in order to get our experience of Carmageddon, the husband and I took mass transit down to Little Tokyo.  I read on the subway (didn't want to risk motion sickness on the bus portion of our journey) and then we had The Best Ramen in LA, visited the art and design exhibit in the area, failed ONCE AGAIN to find Ooku volume 6 aaaargh, bought creampuffs and Vocaloid CDs, and went home. 
liri: old books (books)
I may as well liveblog this. 

Spoilers for the first... seven chapters or so? And references to events from earlier in the series )

I'll continue the reading later; the cold has sort of knocked me on my ass. 
liri: (YAY!)
ZOMG DANCE WITH DRAGONS

I HAVE IT ON MY NOOK

I WON'T RISK BREAKING MY WRISTS TO READ IT AND I HAVE IT RIGHT THIS VERY SECOND

AND I HAVE A COLD AND I NEED TO GO BACK TO BED BUT I HAVE THE BOOK
liri: Esper Terra is very angry (RAWR)
Dreams and mental health stuff )

Meanwhile, my husband continues his love affair with NPR, and so a couple of days ago he showed me this blog entry.  It took me a few days before the fog of RAGE before my eyes dissipated enough that I could read some of the articles linked within.  My poor husband thought I'd enjoy the poke at Twilight, and apparently forgot about my feelings on problem novels/issue-fiction, which tells me something about how much he listens when I rant... anyhow, the main thing to take from the NPR blog entry is AAAAAAAAAAAAARGH NO NO NO STOP IT STOP BEING WRONG ON THE INTERNET, but moving on from that, it's a wrong-headed rebuttal to an utterly wrong-headed WSJ editorial, and everyone being wrong is my very favorite kind of dispute! 

Here are all the wrong people. (Cut for length, and for mention of subjects including self-harm, suicide, sexual assault, etc. etc.) )

Yes, my YA fiction tag is "YA fiction is evil." 
liri: old books (books)
I first read Diana Wynne Jones when I was eleven years old. 

Twenty-one years of books. )
liri: (oro)
So, what I've been up to:

- Getting my lunch eaten by one of my classes this semester. Aiee.

- Over my Christmas visit to the family, my sister-in-law burned me a Vocaloid CD, mostly of Miku. I'd heard of the Vocaloid deal before, but mentally classified it with Hetalia as one of those things that Kids These Days are into, that I am just too old for. But I liked several tracks on the CD. My sister-in-law didn't include a track list, so I went to Youtube to see if I recognized any of the tracks. Within hours, I had not only forgotten my Miku-centric mission, I was shipping Meiko and Kaito. I don't even know.

- Playing WoW. I love the hell out of goblins, find worgen ladies terribly disappointing (it's not even the chihuahua face; it's the jumping animation) and I'm much more interested in 1-60 content than anything I can do with my main. Except archaeology, which I find ridiculously addictive, even though I've solved almost everything that exists.

- Writing a bit. [personal profile] wallwalker mentioned [community profile] fic_promptly (trying to write your Hobart/Greeley prompt, btw. It's possible I'm having too much fun coming up with ways for them to nearly die, though) and from there, I found the DW incarnation of [community profile] 15_minute_ficlets, yay! Now I just need to remember to actually finish and post things.

- Reading. I have now consumed the entire Temeraire series. I love both the Rolands SO MUCH OMG.
liri: old books (books)
I got a Nook for Xmas, and so I proceeded to blow every B&N gift card I've ever not finished spending on books for it. I love it! Now if it crosses my mind to check out a book, I just DO, rather than forgetting about it. So I decided to see if All Clear was out, and it was.

I'm about two-thirds of the way through it now, and I have to say, I think someone should have stopped Connie Willis at some point and told her "no, it's not two books, it's one. You don't need two hundred pages at a time of people chasing each other around, keeping secrets from each other, and following dead-end leads." Because that was pretty much the first third or so of this book, and there was a lot of that in Blackout, too. That said, I'm reading it in preference to playing WoW, so she obviously did somethng right.

At some point along the way, a spoiler happened that was sad but not as devastating as I know she can be - so much so, in fact, that I wouldn't be surprised if what appears to have happened isn't what happened - and at the 400-ish mark, a revelation has made things look very dark, which is pretty effective although I'm almost certain that it's not what it appears. Interestingly, given how many changes she's made to the overall "time-traveling historian" concept along the way, there's a callback to "Fire Watch" partway through. (Interesting because "Fire Watch" was such a rough draft of the idea; the Mr. Dunworthy of the novels would never send someone to a time centuries away from where he'd wanted to go.) I'm reasonably certain that a particular character, named and heard but not really appearing, is the narrator from "Fire Watch," though I'm not sure the Fire Watch narrator ever had a name. There's also a mention of Ned and Verity from To Say Nothing of the Dog.

I'll have a spoiler post once I've read more; for now, I've just had a suspicion confirmed, and the book only has 200 pages left, so hopefully it won't spend too many of those on running around in circles.
liri: old books (books)
As usual, I clam up when dealing with a class that's frustrating me.

I'd been pretty preoccupied with real-life stuff in general. Real-life things )

And then there are the classes. I'd posted about the intellectual freedom class before, but it's getting more and more frustrating. Wall of Text about the education of librarians, self-perpetuating trends in libraries, and escapist fiction vs. the other kind )
liri: old books (books)
Please understand - I read Doomsday Book for the first time back in college, and I've been waiting for the actual sequel ever since. So at least 10 years. I'd stopped trying to look for info, so I wasn't aware of the progress on the book or any developments like splitting the story in two, and I don't recall anything about it being two volumes on the B&N page. Also, most of what's behind the cut was composed during the first half or so of the book.

Thoughts on Blackout. Some minor spoilers. Also, long. )

Blackout

Feb. 9th, 2010 05:12 am
liri: (Default)
what.

Connie Willis pulled a Feast For Crows on me. THIS BOOK ENDS ON A... not really a cliffhanger actually. Perhaps a scenic overlook with a rickety and inadequate guard rail, but not really hanging off a cliff. And to be fair, there was warning in the acknowledgments - something about realizing it needed to be two books - but I thought this meant, like, the parts with Mr. Dunworthy were getting their own book or some such. NOT A FREAKING GEORGE R. R. MARTIN SPECIAL. (Okay technically it's not that yet, because it's not really pulling a Martin unless it takes five years to come out. AND IT HAD BETTER NOT.)

Actual post about book content later.
liri: Reading a fantasy novel (reading)
OMG BLACKOUT IS FINALLY COMING OUT! Nevermind that the last I heard of this book its working title was "All Clear" or something like that and it was supposed to be about Mr. Dunworthy's youth, and I had pretty much given up hope of ever seeing it (I only heard of it in a tangent to what I was reading about the latest AmazonFail.) Possibly she's wanting to update her mid-21st century to reflect the fact that cell phones came to be since the last time she wrote about it? I will keep you all posted, because I used one of the wedding gift cards on it!

Other stuff: Watched the first few episodes of Saiunkoku. Um, it's a little slow-moving, isn't it? I liked Shuurei (I think; the lead chick) seeing right through Ryuuki's attempt at hiding his identity. Also finally getting around to Slayers Revolution, but I have very little patience for filler that involves living stuffed animals or whatever the hell Pokota is, and they're talking about "CLAIR BIBLE" again, and man, was I ever glad to see Xelloss until he left again.

Classes are getting underway; two rounds of group projects this time. Already I am looking for a facepalm icon.
liri: old books (books)
At first I was appalled at Wuthering Heights being marketed to Twilight fans, but really, when you consider that all the Brontes began their creative lives as enormous Byron fangirls (except Branwell, but I believe he was kind of a fanboy) and Emily and Charlotte both carried it well into adulthood, I think they'd understand the obsessive devotion to an idealized male object of desire. But they'd probably be a little bit tripped up by the quality of the writing. I sure hope so, anyway.

I do have to say, though, the fans who react with "there's not enough of the love story" rather than "this book is about how your great epic love will make you and everyone around you first miserable and then dead"? Reactions like that trouble me. The sensible person's reaction to Wuthering Heights is "I HATE THESE PEOPLE," or "wtf is wuthering, anyway?" not "MOAR ROMANCE!" (Or, you know, you could take the mature approach and note that it's about how love does not only happen to nice people who make good or sensible decisions, and love does not redeem anyone or anything; but I read this book when I was fourteen and I HATED Cathy and Heathcliff.)
liri: (Default)
OH HAY GUYS YOU KNOW WHAT THIS SEMESTER WAS MISSING? A BOOK ABOUT ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIPS FROM THE ABUSER'S POV! LET'S REMEDY THAT FORTHWITH!

ARGHLHARGLBARGL )

I am now done with the required reading! Any further fiction rants are entirely self-inflicted!
liri: (BT)
I read a book worse than Twilight this semester. Worse than ANYTHING. Cut for epic length and for content many have described as triggering, including animal death and rape. I don't know if it's 'triggering' that makes me shake with fury, but whatever.

Chinese Handcuffs, by Chris Crutcher. Very, very long. Again, warning for content. I suppose also spoilers, but TRUST ME, you are better off not reading this. )

Short version: There is no short version. I hate this book. All other awful books - this semester and forevermore - get measured against "does the protagonist ever kill a cat and/or act like rape is okay under certain circumstances, and still get treated by the author as if he's not a psychopath?"

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