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[personal profile] helloladies
Ira
Friends! One of my favourite things made of words ever is up for the Best Series Hugo this year! That is correct, The Vorkosigan Saga by Lois McMaster Bujold is a Hugo Finalist. And I am here with the lovely frequent Lady Business guest poster [personal profile] forestofglory (Anna), a fellow Vorkosigan fan, to present you with two ways to skim the highlights of this series in 5 books each.

Anna
Five books is kind of an arbitrary cutoff, but it's a lot fewer than 17!

Ira
Isn't that right!

Now, you may have seen that your Hugo packet includes Borders of Infinity as the sole representative of the Vorkosigan Saga. This is a collection of novellas/short stories with some interstitial material that constitutes its own (very) short story. If Baen, the publisher, had to pick ONE book, this is not a bad choice, as it gives several interesting adventures and tones from this series. However, Anna and I think it doesn't really cover the breadth of the series, and we're here to fix that.

This post is intended for two audiences: (1) People who have never encountered a Vorkosigan book in their life, or maybe have read one or two but don't really know the full series, so we can suggest a subset of the series that is readable by the Hugo voting deadline; and (2) Fans of the series so they can come argue with us about our picks. BOTH ARE SO WELCOME.

Read more... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Sidetracks (sidetracks)
[personal profile] helloladies
Sidetracks is a collaborative project featuring various essays, videos, reviews, or other Internet content that we want to share with each other. All past and current links for the Sidetracks project can be found in our Sidetracks tag.


Read more... )
owlmoose: (lady business - kj)
[personal profile] owlmoose

 photo tales-from-the-tbr-banner_zpsoc22mjt7.png



The book: Books 2-6 of the InCryptid Series by Seanan McGuire, starting with Midnight Blue-Light Special

The summary:

The Covenant of St. George was founded to uphold one simple ideal: anything that was not present on the Ark—anything they deemed "unnatural"—needed to be destroyed. Monsters. Creatures of myth and legend. All of them would be wiped from the Earth in the name of Man's dominion. Unfortunately for them, not all the monsters agreed with this plan...and neither did all the human beings.
After their rather abrupt departure from the Covenant, Alexander and Enid Healy found themselves alone in the world, but with a simple mission of their own: to protect the cryptids of the world from those who would harm them without just cause. It was a cause that would eventually claim both their lives, leaving their children, and their children's children, to take up the fight. Now in the modern day, their descendants struggle to stay beneath the Covenant's radar, while defending the cryptids from humanity—and humanity from the cryptids.


How I found it: Like many of us, my gateway Seanan McGuire book was Rosemary and Rue, the first October Daye story. From there, I began seeking out her other work, and as another urban fantasy series, InCryptid seemed like the natural next step. I read the first book, Discount Armageddon, in 2013 or so, and I enjoyed it, but didn't fall in love with the universe or the characters nearly as much as I had Toby and her world. So when I had to set aside the second book, Midnight Blue-Light Special, only a few chapters in, I didn't feel any strong urgency to return. But I kept buying the new volumes, on the assumption I would get back to them someday. And someday is now.

Read more... )
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
BREAKING NEWS: Tons of people love All Systems Red by Martha Wells, a new novella from Tor. Probably not a spoiler due to my fondness for robot pals: I'm among their number. It's got an uninhabited planet and a strong space thriller vibe. It also boasts a security bot who we can identify with deeply, because all it wants to do is download and watch television shows. The main conceit is that the bot—SecUnit like the humans refer to it, or Murderbot, as it calls itself—has a hacked governor module, granting it its own will and agency. All Systems Red is about what it chooses to do with that agency. Read more... )
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
This year there was a shadow jury for the Clarke Award, which was fascinating. they released their own list of finalists right before the Clarke Award dropped the official finalist list.

Clarke Award Finalists

  • A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers
  • Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee
  • After Atlas by Emma Newman
  • Occupy Me by Tricia Sullivan
  • Central Station by Lavie Tidhar
  • The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

The Sharke Six

  • The Power by Naomi Alderman
  • A Field Guide to Reality by Joanna Kavenna
  • Infinite Ground by Martin MacInnes
  • Central Station by Lavie Tidhar
  • The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
  • The Arrival of Missives by Aliya Whiteley

The shadow jury's finalist list name is super cute. Read more... )
owlmoose: (lady business - kj)
[personal profile] owlmoose
As anyone knows who gets me started on the subject, my favorite book series of the last few years is the Memoirs of Lady Trent series by Marie Brennan. The fifth and final book in the main series, Within the Sanctuary of Wings, was recently released, and it more than lives up to the promise of its predecessors -- in fact, it closes out Isabella's story in a brilliant way that I could have never have imagined.

Back in January, I wrote a non-spoilery introduction to Lady Trent for The Book Smugglers, as part of their annual Smugglivus series. So if you aren't familiar with the books and would like to learn more without any spoilers, I recommend that you read that article. Here, I want to go into a little more spoilery detail, so caution: spoilers for the series ahead! I promise all will be well-marked.

I picked up the first book in this series, The Natural History of Dragons, on a bit of a whim. I had read some of Marie Brennan's Onyx Court books, but I was more a fan of her public persona than her writing; in particular, she's a regular attendee and panelist at FogCon, my local literary SFF convention, and I always enjoy her panels. I'm pretty sure, actually, that I saw the book in the FogCon dealers room and bought it there. I like Marie Brennan, and I like dragons, so the combination was hard to resist. To say that I fell in love immediately might be an overstatement, but I enjoyed the book well enough to give the book five stars on GoodReads, and I bought the second volume in hardback. As the series continued, I found that each book leveled up in terms of storytelling and intrigue, building on what came before as the key incidents that bookmark Isabella's life are revealed, one by one, and I was drawn completely in.

Read more. )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Favorite Media (favorite media)
[personal profile] helloladies
This time around for our patron sponsored recommendation list, we pulled together all our favorite female space adventurers, from books to TV shows to video games.


Read more... )
spindizzy: Raven looked shocked and appalled. (You what?!)
[personal profile] spindizzy
By which I mean hi everyone, it's been a while. But I'm back, I have been pouring media into my face pretty solidly since you last saw me so I am ready to start yelling and keep yelling for a good long while!

(Q: Susan, how many books?
A: Look, I'm not saying that I'm on track to crack 150 books by August, I'm just saying 98 books is a completely reasonable number of books to have read by mid-March.)

In that spirit, welcome to all of this yelling. Housekeeping: I'd like to give the most grateful shout out to [personal profile] renay for getting my shit together for me with the images! She is a star! And I also wanna remind everyone that the asterisk in the list below is a marker for sexual assault/rape, so look after yourselves, okay?

Let's go!


  1. Daughter of Mystery by Heather Rose Jones [Jump]

  2. Princess Jellyfish Volume 1 by Akiko Higashimura [Jump] *

  3. Pandora Hearts Volume 5 by Jun Mochizuki [Jump]

  4. Pandora Hearts Volume 6 by Jun Mochizuki [Jump]

  5. Iron & Velvet by Alexis Hall [Jump]

  6. The Masked City by Genevieve Cogman [Jump]

  7. Binti by Nnedi Okorafor [Jump]

  8. Home by Nnedi Okorafor [Jump]


Read more... )

Reading Goals


Reading goal: 24/150 (8 new this post) Prose: 12/50 (5 new this post)
New-to-me female authors: 5/75 (2 new this post: Heather Rose Jones, Akiko Higashimura)
#getouttamydamnhouse: 12/90 (3 gone this post)
#unofficialqueerasfuckbookclub: 5/24 (2 new this post; Daughter of Mystery and Iron & Velvet.)
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Fanwork Recs (fanwork recs)
[personal profile] helloladies
It sure has been A Week. If you're tired of the news (WHO ISN'T?), we have a variety of excellent fanwork to browse! If you find something you love, we encourage you to comment and let the creator know you enjoyed their work. :D What fanwork have you loved recently?

Recommendations included:
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender — art (1)
  • Captain America: Civil War — fic (1)
  • Dragon Age: Inquisition — cosplay (1)
  • The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air — art (1)
  • Mad Max: Fury Road — art (1)
  • Sleeping Beauty — cosplay (1)
  • Squirrel Girl — art (1)
  • Star Wars — art (1), cosplay (1)
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens — art (2)
  • Star Wars: The Last Jedi — art (1)
  • Super Mario — art (1)
  • Yuri!!! On Ice — art (1)

On to the recs! )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Adventures Elsewhere (adventures elsewhere)
[personal profile] helloladies
Adventures Elsewhere collects our reviews, guest posts, articles, and other content we've spread across the Internet recently! See what we've been up in our other projects. :D


Read more... )
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
One of my 2017 book challenges: reading 15 space operas. As I searched for books I wanted to read and read some of the books I chose to prioritize last year, I realized my desire for space opera is falling along very specific lines. Read more... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Sidetracks (sidetracks)
[personal profile] helloladies
Sidetracks is a collaborative project featuring various essays, videos, reviews, or other Internet content that we want to share with each other. All past and current links for the Sidetracks project can be found in our Sidetracks tag.


Read more... )
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
In 2017, I promised myself: realistic and achievable reading goals. I started small, but of course I spiraled out of control once the end of January rolled around, because I'm weak. These were my final goals (100%, no more goals, I am at Max Reading Goals, and I'm gonna stick to it because I know Ira and Jenny will give me Looks):
  1. Read 110 items.
  2. Read 30 new women writers.
  3. Read 10 nonfiction titles.
  4. Space Opera Challenge: read 15 titles.
  5. Read 10 books I own purchased before January 1, 2017.
  6. Read 5% of my anticipated 2017 titles.
Read more... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Fanwork Recs (fanwork recs)
[personal profile] helloladies
Fanwork is awesome and sharing fanwork is even more awesome. Join us as we keymash and squee over our favorite fanwork, from fic (both written and podfic) to art to vids and meta and back again.

If you find something you love, we encourage you to comment/favorite and let the creator know you enjoyed their work. :D o/


Recommendations included:
  • Critical Role — art (1)
  • Mass Effect — fic (1)
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens — cosplay (1)
  • Sherlock Holmes — art (1)
  • Yuri!!! On Ice — fic (1)

On to the recs! )


What fanwork have you loved recently?
bookgazing: (Default)
[personal profile] bookgazing
Down for a lot of words about killer robots, ladies, and feelings? Then please join me for bi-weekly recaps of The Sarah Connor Chronicles.


Spoilers )
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
cover for Warchild


Warchild by Karin Lowachee is full of a muted homoerotic undertones, which is a good description of my entire love life as a teenager, so it's not surprising that I loved this book. But that's not the only selling point of the novel! It also has spies, alien martial arts, slow burn friendships, revenge, double crosses, and a critique of all the terrifying ways child abuse can fuck someone up, in and out of war.

I expected space battles, Obligatory Female Love Interest, and a testosterone fueled climax where the Good Guy Protag gets verbally fellated by everyone around him. Plus, medals, because for some reason in my head all military space opera ends like A New Hope. Instead I was treated to a personal account of one boy surviving every horrible thing the universe could throw at him, because who needs a happy childhood to turn into a well-adjusted and happy adult? Ha ha ha, let's make this kid suffer as he grows up, lose everything, fall in love with someone unattainable, and betray people he cares for multiple times for the person he loves even though he can't figure out if that person actually cares for him or is just using him. If you want some angst, my friends, allow me to introduce you to Jos Musey. Read more... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Sidetracks (sidetracks)
[personal profile] helloladies
Sidetracks is a collaborative project featuring various essays, videos, reviews, or other Internet content that we want to share with each other. All past and current links for the Sidetracks project can be found in our Sidetracks tag.


Read more... )
justira: A purple, gender-ambiguous unicorn pony in the style of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. (lady business)
[personal profile] justira
HELLO FRIENDS strap in it is time to talk about RACE and ABLEISM and FLAWED PROTAGONISTS.

Yes!

Also semiotics! Readers of this blog will know that I am a big fan of semiotics. However, this is not a post in that series. In fact, I want to hop back to a co-review I did with the inimitable Susan where I mentioned Leslie Jamison's essay, "Grand Unified Theory of Female Pain". Since this was in the spoilery section of the reviews, here is a quick recap: Jamison discusses how pain relates to the semiotics of the body, saying that flesh speaks the language of pain. Nothing grounds us quite so acutely in the moment, in our bodies, as pain. In this post, I argue that discomfort plays a similar role in the semiotics of the self, grounding us in a keen sense of self-consciousness, self-awareness. It is this that ties together two books I read recently.

These books are Borderline by Mishell Baker and White Tears by Hari Kunzru. I read these at the same time — one right in the middle of the others — and while they are nothing alike on the surface, I ended up having many similar thoughts about them. If you know anything about either of these books, you might be thinking, "Ira, you tl;dr gentlebeast, what do these books have to do with each other even?"

Oh, let's see... They both have deeply flawed protagonists (who are racist), they both deal heavily and in a very self-aware way with social issues, they both elide reality in a way that makes the reader work to pick apart what is objectively happening (is there an objective reality?), and they both use the tool of reader discomfort to achieve a sociopolitical goal, engaging the reader in semiotic self-work. Oh, and in both of them a lady dies to serve the narrative in a way that makes me uncomfortable. I think those are good places to start. But before we go on to talk about that, let's look at some nice spoiler-free jacket copy. I'm going to go as far as I can here without revealing any spoilers, and will clearly mark where the spoilers begin. Without further ado!

Read more... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Favorite Media (favorite media)
[personal profile] helloladies
Each month, we look back over the media we loved in the previous month, from books to film to video games and more.


Read more... )
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
In a galactic empire, spread across hundreds of systems and connected only by the Flow, a "river" of space-time that allows access to every human settlement, change is coming. The Flow will soon be gone, and the humans who live in this empire, called the Interdependency, must confront their changing circumstances.

That's The Collapsing Empire in a nutshell, but it's also so much more because of the wide array of characters that we go along with on their journey through the beginning of the end of an empire. There's the son of the scientist who discovered the Flow's days were numbered; a guild official whose obscene delightful, and confident engagement with the world clears many paths for her except in the case of people greedier than even she is; and a princess who was never meant to rule facing a throne she never wanted. They're up against a scheming trio of siblings, slow-moving bureaucracy, and the end of the comfortable worlds they're used to.

When my pals started reading this book, it was impossible to resist having discussions about fancasting it because it was so cinematic and character driven. [twitter.com profile] kaytaylorrea did this first, over at Book Riot, and I do not disagree with any of her choices at all. I WOULD WATCH THE HECK OUT OF THAT.

Right after we had our discussion, the announcement went up about the TV rights sliding into someone's pocket, which is SUPER RELEVANT to my interests. Until it gets made, though, we get to dream about potential casts, and this is mine (unrealistic as it may be). There are some light spoilers in this fancast, so be careful! Read more... )

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Queer lady geek Clare was raised by French wolves in the American South. more? » twitter icon webpage icon

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