So that's what I've been up to this week - how about everyone else?
"Week in..." is a regular post to let me discuss what I've been reading, watching or playing lately in fewer words than a full review. It's primarily here to be useful and let me talk about things that either I'm not planning to review, or won't be getting around to for a while.
- No-Time Party Cakes by Carol Deacon
I've not got very far into this, but I think the author and I have very different definitions of "No time" decorating. Anything that needs to be prepped overnight isn't "no time". Some of the ideas look good, some look silly or creepy, all of them look too complicated to justify that title.
- Looking For Alaska by John Green (A boy obsessed with last words looking for a Great Perhaps.)
I'm going to see John Green next
FridayThursday with Tonks, and I'm quite excited! I figured I should at least finish some of his backcatalogue because a) Renay bought them for me as she is an amazing person (I am terrible for not finishing them already, I'm sorry!) and b) I want to be able to follow more of the Q&A if there is one than JOHN GREEN HAS A CULT OF PERSONALITY! Anyway, I've not got far into this, and this may be because my Annoyingly Apathetic Protagonist Alert is flashing. Plus, I kinda realised that me and Miles probably aren't going to get along until his character development kicks in. He uses HIGHLIGHTERS on books! Books that AREN'T HIS! When he's been SPECIFICALLY TOLD NOT TOO! ... I kinda wanted to slap him when I read that line.
- To Write Like a Woman by Joanna Russ (A collection of essays on science fiction, feminism, and authors.)
I reached the second part of this book and I'm now on marginally more familiar ground! \o/ I haven't read any of the books or authors that she mentions apart from The Female Man, so I may have to do what I did with How to Suppress Women's Writing and use it as a book list. "What Can a Heroine Do" and "Someone is Trying to Kill Me and I Think It's My Husband" are my favourite essays in this book, while I'd consider "To Write 'Like a Woman'" and "On Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley" to be the most educational about authors I've not read (It's going to be interesting if/when I do get to these authors, to see whether this interpretation matches or influences mine.), and her essays about feminist utopias and gender wars are just - they're interesting from a feminist viewpoint and also terrifying. (I didn't know that the stories like the ones she discussed in the gender wars essay had been traditionally published, I thought they were a myth the internet had made up to scare me. Apparently not!) Anyway, yes. Part of my fondness for "What Can a Heroine Do" comes from her listing gender-reversed stories/tropes (... some of which I would read, I have to admit) and runs though how changing the gender of the protagonist in some of them actually changes the entire meaning of the story - something that hadn't occured me, and something that I love when people help me though because I have a hard time doing it on my own. The rest of my love for it comes from a paragraph discussing the options for a female author who does not wish to be constrained by traditional novel conventions, because this explains everything about the structure of The Female Man. I respect her so much for that.
- The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater (Racing on killer horses for the sake of everything you hold dear.)
I have reached the plot and training for the races, and I am back to gulping this novel down like there's no tomorrow while simultaneously hoping it doesn't end this time. The atmosphere! The supporting characters! The way different characters describe things and want differently and fflsdjfhlsdfhl I love everyone.
- Mass Effect 3 (One woman and her team searching for a way to fight the greatest threat to the galaxy.)
And now Lex has reached the ending (Again) and got a chance to see what the new ending DLC had added! ... Honestly, I would have been happy if the game had ended ten/twenty minutes sooner (Spoiler warning (by which I mean OH GOD SPOILERS FOR THE ENDING DO NOT HIGHLIGHT UNLESS YOU ARE REALLY SURE YOU DON'T CARE OR HAVE SEEN EVERYTHING YOU WANT TO.): (skip)) because they could hae made the confrontation with The Illusive Man into the final choice with very little shenaniganry and ended it with Shepard and Anderson potentially bleeding to death and watching Reapers explode and I would have been perfectly happy with that. As it is... I guess the green explosion was okay? I'm not entirely comfortable with the idea of non-consensually mutating an entire galaxy, suddenly everyone being okay with Reapers/Husks/other Synthetics helping them to rebuild, or Shepard nobly sacrificing herself when she explicitly says (at least if you choose the Paragon option) that she's not going to give up everything. I understand the story reasons why she can't live, but screw that. (Also, they're going to need ANOTHER GALAXY if they discover immortality, because IMMORTAL KROGANS. IMMORTAL KROGANS BREEDING LIKE THERE'S NO TOMORROW. Also, how the hell do to the synthetic parts breed through?) In conclusion, I love everybody in this game - seriously, as much as I'd like to say that I didn't squee and flail the entire time I was watching this game, I'd be lying - and oh my god, everyone keeps breaking my heart. THAT IS ALL.
- The Lizzie Bennet Diaries (A modern retelling of Pride & Prejudicetold through blogs.)
The internet (in particular Renay who gave me the link and told me to watch it and Ana who wrote a post about it) has been extremely excited about The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. I was just going to pass the link onto one of my sisters - a massive fan of Pride & Prejudice - but then I wanted background noise while I worked on my review of Wither on Wednesday... Twelve hours later I emerged, babbling incoherently about Jane and how adorable she was, and how adorable Bing Lee was, and Darcy and how Lizzie Bennet should apologise to her sister right now and kermit flailing. INTERNET: YOU WERE EXACTLY RIGHT AND I SHOULD NEVER HAVE DOUBTED YOU. It is exactly as good, charming and funny as promised. The changes it makes to the plot and the characters all make sense (also: diversity! YES! Thank you for that, and thank you for not making it A Thing!) and cause the story to work a lot better in a modern setting than I had expected. I am now eagerly awaiting the next installment and wanting Lizzie and Darcy to keep bonding and make out... And also for Wyckham to get punched in the face, considering the latest episode. WYCKHAM! (Disclaimer:I am only following the main Lizzie Bennet Diaries and Maria Lu's vlog, rather than all of the social media attached to this and Lydia's vlog, on the grounds that my sense of Fremdschamen and Wanting To Punch Wyckham conspire against me.)
So that's what I've been up to this week - how about everyone else?