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Thursday, March 9, 2017

Review: Starbright: The Complete Series

Starbright: The Complete Series Starbright: The Complete Series by Hilary Thompson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

At first the description lends you to think there are to many themes or types of lit that none of them can be executed well. That thought is wrong. This series blends dystopia, sci-fi, YA, a dash of romance, and a bit if mythology in such a way that everything feels complete. There are places where you cry, times when you get angry, maybe one or two moments where the cliffhanger makes you stay up all night because you need to know what happens next. Starbright is a wonderfully well rounded series that is fun to read; and is a fantastic introduction to dystopian literature if you aren't familiar with the genre.

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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Review: The Geek Feminist Revolution

The Geek Feminist Revolution The Geek Feminist Revolution by Kameron Hurley
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Geek Feminist Revolution is a fantastic collection of inspiring and insightful essays. There is career advice for aspiring or current writers, there is compassion for female geeks, and there is a call to arms within the fandoms to encourage and hone the art of geekdom. Hurley is a masterful writer and there are several points in the book where I have underlined what she said, written in questions and definitions. This is worth the time and read for anyone. Plus each essay is relatvely short so you can read it in quick bursts. It is bound to cause conversation and might make a few people angry, but isn't that the goal of any book?

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Sunday, March 5, 2017

Viva La Geek Girl Revolution!

Morning All,

Today we're discussing The Geek Feminist Revolution by Kameron Hurley, a self dubbed Intellectual Badass who has truly earned the title. Known for her incredible Sci-Fi and Fantasy novels this collection of essays is something else and more and a wonderful stand alone to her other work.

I am a bad feminist, not in the same vein as Roxanne Gay, but still I don't find myself to be a good feminist. I believe in women having every single opportunity, I believe in women making equal wages, and I think that having a vagina doesn't mean you have to be separated from a person with a penis unless literally it is for a porno casting. Women are every bit as smart, as strong, as capable as our male counterparts. Yet we're valued as less because somehow, somewhere, that became okay; and women have spent centuries trying to stop that bullshit.

Kameron Hurley's collection of geekish essay's lets me be okay calling myself a feminist. She doesn't blame men for the current plight of the females of our species, and she doesn't rally females into violent assault either. What she does is spend plenty of time building the reader up, and reminding them that regardless of gender we have a world we need to create, a world we need to support and embrace, a world that we need to be held responsible for and for what we put into it. As writers, consumers, citizens we have the immense responsibility for what we pour out of ourselves and into this world.

My copy of The Geek Feminist Revolution is now struck through and looks as though it is bleeding with the portions I have underlined, the notes I have added, the questions I have asked it knowing I won't get the answers from the pages; but rather from what I do after I read this book. TGFR contains real world advice on writing, the importance of ownership, and the surprising look into how much of geek culture is made up of women who aren't accepted into it. Hurley also spends a portion of the book explaining the culture of geekdom, how mainstream media dissects and perpetuates certain tropes and archetypes, and what makes her brand of geeky feminism so personal to her.

I can't explain what it is exactly that makes me love this book, and honestly I don't think I loved it for any specific reason. Finding something that helps you explore and understand a part of your identity as a woman and a geek in 2017 isn't easy, and I wasn't really looking for it. When I decided to read this book I needed to fulfill my Litsy A to Z "G" challenge, and find something that wasn't fiction. A collection of non-fiction essays certainly fit that bill, but gave me something more. I'm more fueled now to keep reading everything, to pick books that I normally wouldn't, to accept the fact that I love to read books that make most people think I'm a psychopath. I found utter acceptance in Hurley's essays, and I can't be the only one who did.

Challenge Met:

Publishing Info:
287 pages (including notes and annotations!)
Originally Published on 5/31/2016 by Tor Books in English
ISBN 13: 9780765386243

Amazon Link:

Author Page:

TBR because of this book:

Geek Girls Unite: How Fangirls, Bookworms, Indie Chicks, and Other Misfits Are Taking Over the World by Leslie Simon

Review: Gardenia

Gardenia Gardenia by Kelsey Sutton
My rating: 0 of 5 stars

When you're a teenager life sucks, it is a given fact of the universe. The fact that Ivy's life LITERALLY is counting down over her, and everyone else's, head some how compounds this fact and makes you pause to think about the shitty decisions you make on a day to day basis.. The actual concept of being able to see how many seconds you have left on earth is insane, knowing that this will be one of the last decisions you make before you die has every possibility of really screwing with your head; save for the fact that this book doesn't quite let you get lost in utter despair. The coupling of intense and insane moral concepts gets shoved to the wayside at certain points with hilarious relationships, confusing sexual encounters, and the mystery of it all. Definitely worth the read, and worthy of conversation after just to get some much wanted closure.

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Review: The Clockwork Dynasty

The Clockwork Dynasty The Clockwork Dynasty by Daniel H. Wilson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

There are many authors and many novels that try to send you to the past, bring you back to the present, and have every page be a different moment in the timeline, and few do this well; this is one of those books that does it perfectly! Without the use of flashbacks the story probably wouldn't have tied together so well. The combination of landscape description, development of characters, the accuracy of the history, and the utter insanity of the plot combine beautifully to wrap you in this potentially different version of your actual world. Also, the intensity and utter realism of the Avtomat will screw with your head, in a terrifyingly good way. As I finished this book I found myself hoping for a sequel or a series or a never ending epilogue because I could not give this book up easily. I read every single word on every single page, not in the fear of missing something but rather in the desperation that I wasn't ready for this story to end.

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Review: Witchtown

Witchtown Witchtown by Cory Putman Oakes
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is an easy and fun read. The basic premise of the mother/daughter con artist team coupled with a dash of occult fun, traditional angst, some romance, a bit of mystery, and the desire for book two make this the kind of book you can honestly read just for fun. I would love to see the author make this into a series, I feel that the characters and setting have that sort of staying power. Also don't be surprised if you see a companion cookbook; which would be amazing, the food described at the Witchtown bakery will make you hungry for more.

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Review: The Night Ocean

The Night Ocean The Night Ocean by Paul La Farge
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a novel that is enigmatic mystery wrapped in historical and honest prose. Marina is never quite able to catch up and as a reader you're cheering for her while simultaneously trying to stay steps ahead of Lovecraft or Barlow. There is a love story seeped in want and need that is always teetering at the edge of unrequited satisfaction. Characters searching for truth and answers, though it is sometimes indistinguishable as to what is actually true and what is an interpretation of the truth. There are a few slow parts but they are few and far between. I cannot express passionately enough what a breathtaking whirlwind this novel is and just how truly fantastic it is. The Night Ocean gives you so much and asks for nothing in return except to be read and read again.

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Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Marching into History; March's Reading Plan

Good Morning Happy Readers!

March is Women's History Month. March is a month with 31 days. Purim will begin on March 11, 2017. On March 12, 2017 we lose an hour of sleep to Daylight Savings Time, there is also a full moon that night. March 17 is St. Patrick's Day and is the day after my best friends birthday. Spring will begin on March 20, 2017. And today, March 1 is Ash Wednesday. Last month I read 17 books, in January I read 30. This month I am determined to read more, to focus that reading on my challenges, and to embrace the distraction of reading as sparingly as possible. With that in mind I have a plan.

For March, a month dedicated to Women's History, I will be reading the following:

All written by women, some written by women of color, some fiction, some non fiction, all framing history in one context or another. 

I'll get more specific with each as I read them; and I'll let you know what challenges they fit.

Until the next time. 


Stats and Stacks!

Morning All,

Just a quick wrap up to February while prepping for March.

Stats keep us accountable when it comes to challenges.