helloladies: Horseshoe icon with the words Lady Business underneath. (Default)
[personal profile] helloladies
Happy holidays, y’all! ‘Tis the season for giving, but what, exactly, do you give? Luckily, the Lady Business editors are here with a gift guide some stuff we want that might inspire you too.


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... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Xena Recaps (xena recaps)
[personal profile] helloladies
Clare & Renay's Adventures in: Xena


In a time without a Black Widow movie on the horizon, two fans in turmoil cried out for a heroine. She was Xena, a mighty female protagonist forged in the fires of Hercules: The Legendary Journeys. The action, the camp, the queer subtext. Her adventures will rock their worlds.


Renay: Wow, this episode changed tons of my feelings about this series so far and my reaction to it was basically "?!?!?!?!". Read more... )
spindizzy: (Well when you say it like THAT it sounds)
[personal profile] spindizzy
Cover of Hawkeye Volume One


Mates, everyone has been telling me that Matt Fraction's Hawkeye is the best intro to Human Disaster Hawkeye and Awesome Hawkeye that I'm going to get, and they are exactly right. In this book, Clint Barton: acquires a pizza dog called Lucky, takes on a tracksuit mafia, becomes a landlord, ruins minimum two of his relationships, and is very upfront that Kate Bishop is his favourite Hawkeye. It's delightful.

(Bonus: now I know why everyone has been laughing so hard at the existence of Only Sane Man Hawkeye in the movies.)

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. Our October favorites are coming to you a little late as we recover from our election hangover, but we're climbing back on the horse. There's still lots of art out there to love. ♥


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

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



The book: Indexing by Seanan McGuire.

 photo 17907054_zpsnvyathea.jpg

The summary:
“Never underestimate the power of a good story.”

Good advice...especially when a story can kill you.

For most people, the story of their lives is just that: the accumulation of time, encounters, and actions into a cohesive whole. But for an unfortunate few, that day-to-day existence is affected—perhaps infected is a better word—by memetic incursion: where fairy tale narratives become reality, often with disastrous results.

That's where the ATI Management Bureau steps in, an organization tasked with protecting the world from fairy tales, even while most of their agents are struggling to keep their own fantastic archetypes from taking over their lives. When you're dealing with storybook narratives in the real world, it doesn't matter if you're Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, or the Wicked Queen: no one gets a happily ever after.


How I found it: I'm a huge fan of McGuire's October Daye series, and I'm always up for a fairy tale retelling, so picking this one up was a no-brainer. I bought it new shortly after it came out in print, in early 2014. (It was first released in chapters as an Amazon Serial in 2013.) I can't really explain why it took me this long to actually read it; I suppose the mood just never struck me.

What inspired me to read it now: The TBR meme that [personal profile] renay tagged me in a little while back. Indexing was my answer to one of the meme questions, and I committed to reading it for this column soon. When it came time to pick a book for November, I ran a little Twitter poll, and this book tied with Luck in the Shadows for first place. I went with my gut and am glad I did, because I enjoyed this book quite well.

The verdict: This book should have been KJ-bait -- fairy-tale mashups, twisted and subverted tropes, and the classification of information as a plot point -- and fortunately, it was. The premise, that fairy tales are a force in the universe trying to re-write reality to fit their narratives, was intriguing, and McGuire has a lot of fun working that idea into our world. The ATI (which stands for Aarne-Thompson Index, a fairy tale classification system used by real folklorists) is the shadowy government organization tasked with recognizing and stopping incursions of the narrative. The librarian in me appreciated the difficulty of classifying incidents (where's the line between a Sleeping Beauty and a Snow White? should urban legends count as fairy tales? how do stories that depend on rigid gender roles deal with more fluid identities?); as any cataloger can tell you, subjects are rarely as neat in the real world as they appear on paper, and getting it wrong has consequences. If I misclassify a book, no patron will ever be able to find it, and it might muddy search results with an inaccurate hit. The stakes are rather higher for the ATI -- if they guess that the wrong trope is in play, and take the wrong action as a result, people sometimes die -- but the dilemma is familiar.

But at heart, Indexing is the story of Henry Marchen, an ATI agent who has spent her entire life trying not to live out her Snow White story, and her partner Sloane, who is also an evil stepsister and therefore Henry's natural enemy. It's one of the most effective twists on "good cop"/"bad cop" and odd couple partnerships I've ever seen. The rest of Henry's ATI team has an appealing found family dynamic, too. Without going into spoilery details, everyone on Henry's team has been touched by the narrative in some way, and I enjoyed seeing the different ways each member either embraces or avoids their destiny.

Because this book was initially released as an Amazon Serial, the chapters are episodic in nature. In some cases that works better than others, but all the story threads are tied together well at the end. The book feels like a police procedural as much as anything, with the last chapter in particular having the sense of the end of a first season, rather than a series finale -- the current enemy is defeated, and there is a sense of closure, but as many questions are left open as are answered. There is a sequel, which is already out; I look forward to reading it, but I do wish this first book stood a little better on its own.

Thanks to everyone who suggested I read this book now! And for some of the rest of you, I promise Luck in the Shadows will be next.
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
Sometimes I read books that get under my skin. They make me feel happy, angry, or ignorant. Surprise, fiction makes you feel things! But the ones that cause negative emotions tend to stick around and poke at me. I want to move on, book! But the book (in this case, Daughter of Mystery) is determined to make me unpack whatever it is. It's like my brain is mocking me with the fact that I didn't get it and didn't understand something and therefore look how dumb I am because all the book was doing is using basic knowledge about the world.

Perhaps! Is knowledge of how regency England worked basic knowledge? Is there a nonfiction book that can explain the mystery of Seasons and coming out and the frankly ridiculous social stratification that happened because white people needed to feel important? But also: should I feel guilty that I don't want to learn about this particular thing and find it boring (obviously no, but anxiety doesn't care about my opinion) when the rest of the world feels as if it's gaga for it?

(It's not just me, right? Because the regency romance section of any library or bookstore I go into makes me feel like it's just me.)this is a 12 minute read according to Internet Math. Handy! )
spindizzy: She is too fond of books and it has turned her brain. (Book turned brain)
[personal profile] spindizzy
[personal profile] renay did The Intimidating TBR Tag a few weeks ago, and tagged me to respond!

... Here is a slightly out of date photo of my TBR pile, guys. This entire bookcase. Narrowing this down was NOT EASY.

A bookcase with books double and triple stacked on it.


Read more... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Xena Recaps (xena recaps)
[personal profile] helloladies
Clare & Renay's Adventures in: Xena

In a time without a Black Widow movie on the horizon, two fans in turmoil cried out for a heroine. She was Xena, a mighty female protagonist forged in the fires of Hercules: The Legendary Journeys. The action, the camp, the queer subtext. Her adventures will rock their worlds.

Clare: I enjoyed this episode thoroughly, but I do have to open my thoughts on it by screaming, "WHY DOES JOXER EXIST?" Read more... )
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... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Guest Post (guest post)
[personal profile] helloladies
Today we welcome Jenny from the delightful book blog & podcast Reading the End to Lady Business to discuss Superwomen: Gender, Power, and Representation by Carolyn Cocca. *\o/*


As a critical, feminist fan of (American) football and (mostly Marvel) comics, I fairly often hear the argument that people don’t come to football and comics for politics, they come to football and comics for fun. Social justice warriors and PC police are taking a thing that’s supposed to be fun, this argument goes, and making it grim and serious by getting politics all over it.

This is kind of like saying you don’t want to eat yogurt because you don’t like the idea of having bacteria in your body. The bacteria’s in there already, team. What you mean is that you don’t want these bacteria. You don’t want these politics, the ones that do not actively work to conceal systems of oppression in which you and your fun thing are complicit. Because—and perhaps you should be sitting down to receive this news—adherence to a perceived political norm is also political. Read more... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Admin Post (admin post)
[personal profile] helloladies
Due to the US election, we have decided to postpone all posts that would have gone up this week until next week. We are all sad and hurt over the results, and need to take some time to process it.

The results of this election are part of a worldwide backlash against social progress, and the effects have been seen everywhere, including in our speculative fiction and media critique communities. The Book Smugglers have a lovely, thoughtful post on their own break, which we recommend everyone read.

We, too, will strive to be more inclusive, more intersectional, and more progressive here at Lady Business. While we need some space to grieve right now, we will come back stronger and better than ever before, and will continue to fight for marginalized voices.

If anyone has cute animal gifs, suggestions on organisations that need volunteers, or self-care tips, come and join us in the comments?

Comments will be moderated and may not appear immediately, please remember the comment policy. We'll be back next week! Stay safe, take heart, be well!
justira: A purple, gender-ambiguous unicorn pony in the style of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. (lady business)
[personal profile] justira
Welcome to part two of my political books roundup! last time I talked about four of the five books I read. Today, I will cover the last of the set, The Great Suppression by Zachary Roth, in detail.


As I said last time, if Ratfucked enraged me, The Great Suppression terrified me. It succeeded in making me think there really was a concerted effort underpinned by a toxic core belief in democracy being undesirable:
Scratch beneath the surface of the arguments for voter ID laws, and you often discover a core belief [...] that voting isn't really for everyone. Look closely at the push for more assertive judges, and you can't help but notice a striking dismissiveness, at best, about the democratic process. Examine the effort to eviscerate campaign finance laws, and you'll find a scathing contempt for the principle of political equality.


In other words, these fights aren't just isolated spats over process, or self-interested interparty skirmishes. They reflect fundamentally divergent worldviews. One sees democracy as a normative good in itself, and as crucial to any claim to political legitimacy. The other sees it as at best a method for achieving effective government, and at worst a blueprint for chaos.


That leads to a troubling conclusion: Most of us like to think that although Americans might disagree profoundly on many issues, and even on values like how to balance liberty with the common good, we all share a commitment to democracy as the best way to resolve these differences. In fact, that consensus may be far more fragile than we'd like to think.

Central to the book's argument is the idea that all of the tactics conservatives are using now have long roots in our country's political and legal systems, often dating back to the Founders themselves. The book is divided into one chapter for each tactic. I'm going to briefly go over each chapter before returning to the book as a whole.


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 month for our patron sponsored recommendation list, we dove into our media histories and pulled out all the time-related stories we loved, from books to films to video games. This is a pretty robust list this time around (thanks Ira!). Enjoy!


Read more... )
justira: A purple, gender-ambiguous unicorn pony in the style of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. (lady business)
[personal profile] justira
So over the past couple of months I'ver read a number of books about elections, voting, and politics. These have ranged from staunchly nonpartisan to staunchly and openly feminist (which shouldn't be a partisan issue but is), and have covered a wide range of topics in relation to elections and voting in the United States. As we approach the 2016 Presidential election in the United States, I wanted to share what I got out of the books in one big post. Here they all are, in the order I read them:
  1. Game Change: Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin (2010)

  2. Double Down: Game Change 2012 by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin (2013)

  3. Big Girls Don't Cry: The Election that Changed Everything for American Women by Rebecca Traister (2010)

  4. Ratf**ked: The True Story Behind The Secret Plan To Steal America's Democracy by David Daley (June 6, 2016)

  5. The Great Suppression: Voting Rights, Corporate Cash, and the Conservative Assault on Democracy by Zachary Roth (August 2, 2016)

Read more... )
spindizzy: (*jedi powers*)
[personal profile] spindizzy
Books, Graphic Novels and Manga Read:
  1. This One Summer by Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki [Jump]

  2. Dark Times by Robert M. Ball [Jump]

  3. I Love This Part by Tillie Walden [Jump]

  4. First Impressions by Kate Calloway [Jump]

  5. Monstress Volume One by Majorie M. Liu and Sana Takeda [Jump]

  6. The Essential Dykes to Watch Out For by Alison Bechdel [Jump]

  7. Fresh Romance Volume One by Sarah Kunh [Jump]

  8. The Ancient Magus' Bride Volume 2 by Kore Yamazaki [Jump]

  9. The Ancient Magus' Bride Volume 3 by Kore Yamazaki [Jump]



Read more... )

Currently Reading


Revenge by Yoko Ogawa (It's a short story collection, and I've only read the first story in it, but so far it's been very precise and unsettling, in a good way.)

Reading Challenges


Books read so far: 107/150 (9 new this post)
New-to-me female creators: 60/100 (16 new this post.)
#unofficialqueerasfuckbookclub: 38/107 (5 new this post: I Love This Part, First Impressions, Monstress, The Essential Dykes To Watch Out For, Fresh Romance.) (I forgot that I'd been initially tracking this as a running tally, and now I have gone back to doing that because it... Might be a more useful marker? A bit late in the year to realise, but it's good to bear in mind for next year... And also to stop me feeling smug, because that number is way lower than I thought!)
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
Recently I asked Ana what books she wanted to revisit from years past. She also turned my question around on me, which I think we can all agree is against at least five international treaties of question-asking, but it made me start thinking.

I visited my reading history to sheets to see what I could find. But what I discovered is: there's a lot of books I would like to re-read and it's been a long time I allowed myself indulgent re-reads in prose work (I've re-read One Piece to various points multiple times because I love crying over inanimate objects and tragic, bittersweet backstories). Maybe 2017 would be a good time to ~reminisce~ book wise.Read more... )
spindizzy: (Backwards and in heels)
[personal profile] spindizzy
Cover of Costume Quest.


I found Costume Quest via a circuitous route: a tabletop RPG that I love, Costume Fairy Adventures cited it as an influence, and while I do not understand Halloween at all (it was Not A Thing at round my way when I was a kid, but I'm enjoying watching the American part of twitter turn into pumpkins), the combo of "Dressing up gives you superpowers!" and "Made by Double Fine, who brought you Psychonauts!" got me where I live so I had to check it out.

Costume Quest is fairly straightforward in terms of plot: you and your twin head off trick or treating in a new town, with instructions from your parents to make new friends... And then your twin gets kidnapped by monsters! It's a good thing that trick-or-treating where you're from apparently involves your costumes letting you transform into a giant monster version of that costume to help you fight monsters and rescue your sibling!

No really.

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.


Recommendations included:
  • Captain America — art (1), fic (1)
  • Critical Role — art (1), fic (1)
  • Dragon Age — art (1), vid (1)
  • Final Fantasy X — art (1)
  • Kingsman — fic (1)
  • The Legend of Zelda — vid (1)
  • Mass Effect — art (1)
  • Star Trek: Beyond — fic (1)
  • Star Wars — art (1)
  • Stranger Things — art (1)
  • Young Avengers — fic (1)

On to the recs! )

What fanwork have you loved recently?

Welcome!

Welcome to Lady Business!

Profile
About
Review Policy
Comment Policy
Writers We Like!
Contact Us
Archive

tumblr icon twitter icon syndication icon

a horseshoe, addition sign, the patreon logo, an equal sign, and a heart in a row

Who We Are


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

Ira is an illustrator and gamer who decided that disagreeing with everyone would be a good way to spend their time on the internet. more? » twitter icon tumblr icon AO3 icon

By day Jodie is currently living the dream as a bookseller for a major British chain of book shops. She has no desire to go back to working in the real world. more? » tumblr icon last.fm icon

KJ KJ is an underemployed librarian, lifelong reader, and more recently an avid gamer. more? » twitter icon tumblr icon AO3 icon

Renay is a long time member of slash fandom and nerdfighteria who stumbled into book blogging by accident and decided she liked arguing with herself at length and in capslock — it was all downhill from there. more? » twitter icon pinboard icon tumblr icon AO3 icon

Susan is a library assistant who uses her insider access to keep her shelves and to-read list permanently over-flowing. more? » twitter icon pinboard icon AO3 icon

Content


Book Review Index
Film Review Index
Television Review Index
Game Review Index
Non-Review Index
Sidetracks
We Want It!
Fanwork Recs
all content by tags

Our Projects


Aikonia: A Webcomic




Short Fiction Surveys


Criticism & Debate


Yes! We welcome criticism and debate and seek to become better people and better critics through the process. However, we do have a comment policy.

Hugo Recs


worldcon 75 logo


What's with your subtitle?


It's a riff off an extremely obscure meme only Tom Hardy and Myspace fans will appreciate.

Powered by Dreamwidth Studios