Calendar Girl (kirilaw) wrote,
Calendar Girl
kirilaw

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42) Brightness Falls From the Air (James Tiptree, Jr.)
The first part of this book was really difficult to read; after setting up immediately likeable characters, Tiptree promptly starts showing all the little mistakes they're making that you, as the reader, know are going to lead to disaster... I kept wanting to reach into the pages of the book to shake them and warn them. I think that's probably a sign that this was a good, absorbing read. Some of the follow-through wasn't quite as smooth as the setup, and some of the resolution was a little too smooth, but overally, I really enjoyed this one. ****

43) Tales of H.P. Lovecraft (ed. Joyce Carol Oates)
Would you believe, I'd never read any Lovecraft before now? I was feeling rather remiss on that score, which is why I picked this book up while I was in the library. I can certainly see why Lovecraft is influential -- there's a nice mood to the stories, and they are generally very effective in conveying the unsettling effect of these encounters with the weird. Many of the stories started to feel rather familiar, read so close together -- the structure is often the same, and they're all heading for a very similar climax. But that's due to the collection, not the stories themselves. My other complaint is about the racism and sexism of the stories. I recognize that these are effects of the era as much as anything else, but it's really quite noticeable. Non-white societies are routinely described as "primitive", and in very unflattering terms. And women are simply absent, strikingly so. Although I was able to enjoy the stories anyway, these issues were occasionally rather jarring. Which is a shame. ***

44) Callaghan and Company (Spider Robinson)
Another short-story collection, this one of largely humorous science fiction stories set in an idealized bar where people are kind and caring and look out for each other. The puns in these stories are terrible (Really really terrible. And occasionally over my head, for which I was actually a little grateful). But the stories themselves are heartwarming and often funny and clever and generally great. They made me laugh out loud occasionally, and smile a lot. Highly recommended. If you can stand the puns. *****

45) The Shape-Changer's Wife (Sharon Shinn)
This is a lovely little fable. It's about a magician who falls in love with his wicked mentor's wife, and learns about loving and letting go. It sounds trite, but it's really not. It's a morsel, but an enjoyable and touching one. ****

46) Scratching the Surface: Canadian Anti-Racist Feminist Thought (ed. Enakshi Dua and Angela Robinson)
Like many anthologies, particularly academic-esque anthologies, this one has its ups and downs. Overall, I felt that I was reading a lot of reiterations of things I already knew, and that there were more statements of problems than cohesive arguments. However, there were some very good articles. They're mostly from a sociological or historical perspective, which was interesting, although I sometimes felt they were raising things but not addressing them from the angles I would have liked to see. ***


1) Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell (Susanna Clarke)
2) Colour: Travels through the Paintbox (Victoria Finlay)
3) the Well of Lost Plots (Jasper Fforde)
4) Daredevil: Guardian Devil (Kevin Smith et al)
5) Hy Brasil (Margaret Elphinstone)
6) Abarat: Days of Magic, Nights of War (Clive Barker)
7) Y: the Last Man: Safeword (Brian Vaughan et al)
8) Death: the Time of Your Life (Neil Gaiman et al)
9) Fables: March of the Wooden Soldiers (Bill Willingham et al)
10) Clothar the Frank (Jack Whyte)
11) Fables: the Mean Seasons (Bill Willingham et al)
12) Batman/Deadman (James Robinson et al)
13) The Madwoman in the Attic (Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar)
14) Lolita (Vladmir Nabokov)
15) The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Mark Haddon)
16) War and Peace (Leo Tolstoy)
17) The Time Traveller's Wife (Audrey Niffenegger)
18) Foucault's Pendulum (Umberto Eco)
19) The Swanne: A Romance in Three Parts (Peter Hinton)
20) Geek Love (Katherine Dunn)
21) Re-Orienting Western Feminism (Chilla Bulbeck)
22, 23, 24) Planetary (vols. 1, 2, 3) (Warren Ellis et al)
25) Women, Gender, Religion: A Reader (ed. Elizabeth A. Castelli and Rosamond C. Rodman)
26) Reading Lolita in Tehran (Azar Nafisi)
27) Y: the Last Man: Ring of Truth (Bill Willingham et al)
28) A Wrinkle in Time (Madeleine L'Engle)
29) Fathland (Robert Harris)
30) Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (J.K. Rowling)
31) The God of Small Things (Arundhrati Roy)
32) Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency (Douglas Adams)
33) Midnight Robber (Nalo Hopkinson)
34) Orientalism (Edward W. Said)
35) So Long Been Dreaming: Postcolonial Science Fiction and Fantasy (ed. Nalo Hopkinson)
36) Tesseracts 7 (ed. Paula Johnson and John-Louis Trudel)
37) Dark Matter: A Century of Speculative Fiction from the African Diaspora (ed. Sheree Thomas)
38) Star Songs of an Old Primate (James Tiptree, Jr.)
39) Brown Girl in the Ring (Nalo Hopkinson)
40) Kindred (Octavia E. Butler)
41) The Blind Assassin (Margaret Atwood)
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