Friday, March 7, 2014

Preach, YA authors, Preach.

Some inspiration for big thoughts on your Friday. The Problem is Not the Books, Saundra Mitchell, shared by John Green - enjoy the weekend! 
"The problem that needs to be fixed is not kick all the girls out of YA, it’s teach boys that stories featuring female protagonists or written by female authors also apply to them. Boys fall in love. Boys want to be important. Boys have hopes and fears and dreams and ambitions. What boys also have is a sexist society in which they are belittled for “liking girl stuff.” Male is neutral, female is specific.
I heard someone mention that Sarah Rees Brennan’s THE DEMON’S LEXICON would be great for boys, but they’d never read it with that cover. Friends, then the problem is NOT with the book. It’s with the society that’s raising that boy. It’s with the community who inculcated that boy with the idea that he can’t read a book with an attractive guy on the cover.
Here’s how we solve the OMG SO MANY GIRLS IN YA problem: quit treating women like secondary appendages. Quit treating women’s art like it’s a niche, novelty creation only for girls. Quit teaching boys to fear the feminine, quit insisting that it’s a hardship for men to have to relate to anything that doesn’t specifically cater to them.
Because if I can watch Raiders of the Lost Ark and want to grow up to be an archaeologist, there’s no reason at all that a boy shouldn’t be able to read THE DEMON’S LEXICON with its cover on. My friends, sexism doesn’t just hurt women, and our young men’s abysmal rate of attraction to literacy is the proof of it.
If you want to fix the male literary crisis, here’s your solution: Become a feminist."
 Via John Green
The Problem is Not the Books, Saundra Mitchell (via silverstags
(via lez-brarian)
(via hollyblack)
Source: becketted 

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Reading Updates: Revisiting Old Favorites

Long time, no book blogging! I am have sadly too busy too read fiction or write reviews these last two months. In the meantime I learned this: finishing your PhD is A LOT OF WORK.  (I guess I should have seen that one coming.) Lately all I have had time for is a couple hours revisiting old books. I don't have the time to get involved in a new story, but stopping off in an old one has been a nice relief! Anyone else out there ever do this?

This week I read some of The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman.  (Oh man, the feels at the end of this book. Sniff sniff)!!

I also read part of Pegasus in Flight and Pegasus in Space.  Which reminded me --Anne McCaffrey is just the best. I didn't know what I needed was a good dose of Sc Fi but it was gggrrrreeaaat.  I hope to get back to new books and more fun reading soon! 

Monday, March 3, 2014

Review: Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick

I was VERY excited to read this, and MAN it was incredible!

Seven stories of passion and love separated by centuries but mysteriously intertwined—this is a tale of horror and beauty, tenderness and sacrifice.

An archaeologist who unearths a mysterious artifact, an airman who finds himself far from home, a painter, a ghost, a vampire, and a Viking: the seven stories in this compelling novel all take place on the remote Scandinavian island of Blessed where a curiously powerful plant that resembles a dragon grows. What binds these stories together? What secrets lurk beneath the surface of this idyllic countryside? And what might be powerful enough to break the cycle of midwinterblood? From award-winning author Marcus Sedgwick comes a book about passion and preservation and ultimately an exploration of the bounds of love.

I LOVED THIS BOOK.  It was so unique, so well written and it just grabbed you. I have never read anything of Sedgwick before but he is now on my radar:

Originality: 9.  I am a hater of short stories, but love  a good companion novel- this book combines there two elements into 7 stories which move backwards in time revealing more and more as we travel backwards.  Intrigue abounds.

Absurdity: 2.  Read that first sentence again in the book description: An archaeologist who unearths a mysterious artifact, an airman who finds himself far from home, a painter, a ghost, a vampire, and a Viking", a little absurd, yes, but the way the author writes the stories they flow together in a way I never could have imagined!

Level of Paranormal Romance: 8.  This is a story about love across time and form.  

Level of Harry Potter-ness.  10.  This was a fabulous short book. compelling, different, and just plain great.  As NP so nicely put it:

Seven intense story lines stretch from the near future to the distant past, together forming a labyrinthine story of love, sacrifice and blood. Over and over again, a cast of vampires, Vikings and high priests encounter one another in various forms — with dire consequences for both their past and future incarnations. via
This book highly deserves the Printz honor and I hope that you all go out there and enjoy a copy yourself!