Mai Yamani

Wednesday reading — theory and practice

What I've been reading

I read Daughters of Earth: Feminist Science Fiction in the Twentieth Century, a collection of short stories, each paired with a critical essay, edited by Justine Larbalestier. I think this is a great way to set up an anthology; it's like after you finish each story, someone is waiting eagerly to discuss it with you, which is awesome. (I got so mad at the essay about Karen Joy Fowler's "What I Didn't See", though. The author has a really bizarre reading where one offhand line is the true theme of the entire story, and also if you even acknowledge that it's possible to read it as 'literary fiction' you are a filthy collaborator and not, like, someone who's capable of seeing ambiguity in a without compulsively resolving it with a sledgehammer.)

I reread Death at the Bar, which is to Alleyn and Fox as The Adventure of the Three Garridebs is to Holmes and Watson. All the Holmes/Watson shippers (or, for that matter, platonic hurt/comfort fans, I guess) know exactly what I'm talking about. Although, unlike Holmes/Watson, no one on the internet seems to actually ship Alleyn/Fox. Including me. I mean, I wouldn't mind shipping it just to annoy Ngaio Marsh's homophobic ghost, but I just can't see my way to it. I'll have to settle for shipping Alleyn with Nigel Bathgate in the early books.

I read The Literature of Hope in the Middle Ages and Today: Connections in Medieval Romance, Modern Fantasy, and Science Fiction, which is a book I turned up doing a subject search at my library for either Science Fiction — Criticism or Fantasy — Criticism. I'm sympathetic to its thesis, which is essentially [thing that I love to read] has many things in common with [other thing that I love to read], but it's not exactly a deep or substantial analysis of the topic. Nice cover, though.

I read Bridge of Birds: A Novel of an Ancient China That Never Was, and loved loved loved it. It's deceptively episodic at first, and hilarious, but everything comes together in a big way at the end and ♥

What I'm reading now

I just started rereading Surfeit of Lampreys. I remember the Lampreys being one of my absolute favorite fictional families. I can't believe they retitled it Death of a Peer when it was published in the U.S.; first of all, that is a pretty boring title, even not in comparison with Surfeit of Lampreys, and second of all how could you possibly pass up that surfeit of lampreys joke, I mean really.

What I'm reading next

I have the other two Chronicles of Master Li and Number Ten Ox, among other things.

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