shinyjenni: Alicia from The Good Wife, seen from behind, wearing a red coat, in front of a wall of bookshelves (alicia books)
[personal profile] shinyjenni
(Slightly belated due to me spending the first week of April in the Lake District with some of my favourite people. <3)

Warlords and Wastrels - Julia Knight
The Fair Fight - Anna Freeman
The Corn King and the Spring Queen - Naomi Mitchison
Midnighter: Out
The Martian - Andy Weir
Catseye - Andre Norton
Ex Machina: The First Hundred Days
Blood of Dragons - Robin Hobb
Tremontaine Season One
Born With Teeth - Kate Mulgrew

The Martian
I've never been a fan of puzzles, largely because I go from "oh a puzzle" to "WHY CAN'T I SOLVE THIS I HATE EVERYTHING" in the space of about ten seconds, but as it turns out I really enjoy watching other people solve them. So I liked the Watney-POV sections of this book very much! The other sections I was less enamoured of - they felt a bit flat, partly I think due to the contrast between single character first person conversational and multiple character omniscient third person style, but also I thought the prose just wasn't that great. :( I did however really like how throughout the earth-based sections there was this sense of everyone coming together to rescue Watney and the feeling that they were determined to rescue him if it was at all possible, no matter the cost in money, resources, time etc. ♥

Didn't finish: The Trials of Masculinity: Policing Sexual Boundaries 1870-1930 - Angus McLaren
This sounded really interesting - looking at how masculinity and heterosexuality were constructed and policed through the legal and medical systems - but ultimately I found it pretty frustrating. I felt like it didn't make strong enough connections between the legal cases it examined (I didn't get as far as the medical section) and what it was trying to say about masculinity as a construct, and when it picked exemplar cases instead of looking at trends, didn't adequately justify their selection either in terms of how they contributed to the argument or why they were characteristic of the period. The wide and slightly unfocused geographical sweep didn't help either - the main focus seemed to be England, but the introduction talked about "Western culture", and cases from France and British Columbia also came up. So I stopped reading it and read a comic instead.

A short story I enjoyed this month: Flightcraft - Iona Sharma. Really beautifully written story about flight and magic and aftermaths. <3

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-12 05:38 pm (UTC)
muccamukk: Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson walking arm in arm. Text: "We strolled about together." (SH: Strolling)
From: [personal profile] muccamukk
The Martian was a story that deserved a better author. I only finished it because it was on audiobook. I did enjoy the movie, however.

Too bad about "Trials of Masculinity." I had my eye on that as well. I remember reading and liking The Wilde Century: Effeminacy, Oscar Wilde, and the Queer Moment, which covered similar topics, but in a more contained manner, though that was some years ago.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-12 04:47 pm (UTC)
ext_3965: (Books - Too Many Books I Need To Read)
From: [identity profile] persiflage-1.livejournal.com
What did you think of Tremontaine?

I found The Martian a nice, easy read and fairly entertaining, but have so far avoided the movie because I figure it'd annoy me more than the book.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-12 09:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ravenskyewalker.livejournal.com
Something I'll tell you about the Martian movie, apart from the fact that I saw it several times like a supernerd -- my sister, who's not the most fannish person (and much more girly than I am), saw it and loved it. So if it pleased someome whom I wouldn't have expected to have any interest, that may be a good sign. Or maybe not. *grin*

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-13 04:51 am (UTC)
ext_3965: (I Prefer Reading)
From: [identity profile] persiflage-1.livejournal.com
I was thinking more in terms of them whitewashing characters. Which tends to really piss me off.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-13 07:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ravenskyewalker.livejournal.com
If you ever saw me posting about the movie on Tumblr, I challenged the "it was so whitewashed and barely any women" claim. Let's see if I can remember, LOL...

Yes, Park was white on-screen, and maybe should've been Korean, but book had no description, and Park can also be a Western name, so... meh, iffy. Chiwetel Ejiofor played Kapoor, who was probably fully Indian in book, but was changed to half-Indian, half-African-descent. (Casting Ejiofor instead of an Indian was possibly wrong, but not whitewashing.) Donald Glover played a nerdy tech whose race wasn't hinted at in book, but he was cast as black in movie (when he so easily could've been white). Hispanic-American astronaut played by guy with name of Peña, probably not whitewashed. Benedict Wong as director of JPL not whitewashed. Couple of Chinese space program officials, one female, when both were male in book. Two women on Mars mission crew, female satellite tech, female NASA media relations director, women among JPL techs and in USA and China Mission Controls, lots of women in astronaut candidate group at end...

So, anyway. It's not perfect, but possibly safe-ish to watch.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-13 07:26 am (UTC)
ext_3965: (I Prefer Reading)
From: [identity profile] persiflage-1.livejournal.com
Huh, okay. That's different to what I read somewhere else.

Anyway, I probably won't watch the movie - just because I already read the book. I have a love/hate relationship with movie adaptations of books. If I see the movie before I read the book, I invariably end up disappointed with the book. If I read the book before I see the movie, I invariably dislike the movie for getting stuff wrong.

The only thing this doesn't apply to is Roald Dahl's 'Matilda' and the Danny Devito movie thereof. I love both of them.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-13 04:31 pm (UTC)
ext_23287: (buffy and willow)
From: [identity profile] shinyjenni.livejournal.com
I liked it a lot! Not as much as the previous books, but it's a great world to spend time in, and I love how casually queer it is. <3

It was a fun read! I haven't seen the film yet but am planning to give it a try - I'm hoping the non-Mark characters will stand out a bit more in that version.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-13 04:34 pm (UTC)
ext_3965: (Books - Too Many Books I Need To Read)
From: [identity profile] persiflage-1.livejournal.com
It is great that it's so casually queer. I confess, despite owning one of the previously published Riverside tales, Tremontaine's my first experience of Riverside as I didn't find out until later that the book in question was part of a series - and not the first of the same!

I hope you enjoy it.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-13 04:44 pm (UTC)
ext_23287: (fez)
From: [identity profile] shinyjenni.livejournal.com
I definitely recommend the other novels if you enjoyed Tremontaine!

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-13 05:27 pm (UTC)
ext_3965: (I Prefer Reading)
From: [identity profile] persiflage-1.livejournal.com
Yeah I must see about getting hold of the other books so I can read from the beginning.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-15 08:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ladymercury-10.livejournal.com
Ahh, Ex Machina. I have a love/hate relationship with that comic. *shakes fist at the ending*

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-19 04:17 pm (UTC)
ext_23287: (silk)
From: [identity profile] shinyjenni.livejournal.com
Oh dear! Maybe I'll consider it a good thing that the library doesn't have volume two, then...

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-20 02:42 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ladymercury-10.livejournal.com
It's an interesting series but it gets much darker as it goes on, and the end is pretty upsetting.

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shinyjenni: Wonder Woman deflects bullets with her bracelets (Default)
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