A fortnight after the last 'weekly' update.Books
Read JY Yang's ~5K word story Auspicium Melioris Aevi
, which they wrote about in this blog post
. It's about clones and history repeating/not-repeating and the goals of a university education under capitalism and, most of all, about Singapore. Judging from the author's post about their story, clearly it was received best by people who knew Singapore well, which I don't, but I liked it a lot anyway and I think if you liked Cyteen
you might well like this too. PS: I do NOT ship Clone Lee Kuan Yew and Clone Vladimir Putin, I DON'T, I REFUSE, you CAN'T MAKE ME. /o\
Read Heather Rose Jones' The Mystic Marriage
, the sequel to Daughter of Mysteries
. It's even less of a conventional romance genre novel than its predecessor. Where Daughter of Mysteries
was in alternating third person between Margerit and Barbara, The Mystic Marriage
shuttles between Antuniet and Jeanne's points of view and also Barbara's and Margerit's. Which is awesome
if you prefer your romance couples to keep developing after the end of 'their' novel and not just show up briefly for a statically happy cameo in the next book to help the new couple, but a little confusing if you were expecting more of the couple you thought would be the main characters in the new novel. Not that Margerit and Barbara aren't there to help the new couple, but their stories continue too. I like this.
I also like how difficult and prickly Antuniet is, and Barbara's own flaws emerging a bit stronger than they did in the previous book (n.b. she's still awesome.) And I liked the competence porn -- Margerit's academic skills (including collegiality), Barbara's combination of court intrigue, law, and security, Antuniet's alchemy and research, and Jeanne's social engineering. That last in particular -- I don't think it's that common for books to show
(rather than tell) that particular skill, not in detail. The actual work part of it, maintaining connections and introducing people and keeping track of who needs what and how that fits in with who else. Showing the role it has in Jeanne's life and how good she is at it gave a lot more force to Jeanne and Antuniet's extrovert/introvert issues, which also unusually, involved the introvert inadvertently not meeting the extrovert's needs. (The other way around gets a lot more attention in articles and books, to the point where it's become kind of a cliche.)
Read Rebecca Fraimow's fantasy novella Suradanna and the Sea
, which is... bittersweet doesn't seem like the right word. Poignant, maybe. A very nice combination of sweet, charming, and ouch
. With the emphasis on the sweet. Mostly. If you like Avatar: The Last Airbender
and Legend of Korra
you might like this. I kind of wish I'd read it earlier (my own damn fault -- it came out in December last year) so I could have requested it for Yuletide or Trick or Treat.Fandom
's Stones Could Fly
, which was a Yuletide fic three years ago, for 'Dixon's Girl' from Dessa's A Badly Broken Code
, and is the spy/secret agent AU for that song I had no idea I needed, and the codenames are all references to the other songs by Dessa.
's The 28th Amendment
, a pundit and journalist RPF AU set after the 2008 US federal election which reads very, very differently in 2017. :(TV and Movies
In honour of the Ghibli festival, went to see Kiki's Delivery Service
in the cinema (in Japanese with English subtitles), which was a good way to see it for the first time (yeah, I know, absolute latest as usual.) I loved the art and story, but could have done with a lot fewer panty shots -- zero sounds about right. Also I'd have liked to hear Jiji talk one more time at the end, just to be certain Kiki could hear him again, as that was worrying me. I didn't know the story, so the bit about magic and artist's block was unexpected and hit me really hard.Games
Played some Pokemon Go early on in the fortnight. Beat a gym through judicious use of revives. So many revives.
Was sufficiently stressed that I reinstalled Stardew Valley on my computer. It's just turned winter in year 1, and my character is incredibly sick of cranberries.Podcasts
Tried a bunch of fiction podcasts: Juno Steel, Death at a Low Price, Whatever Happened to Jonathan Green. I liked Juno Steel okay, but made the mistake of listening to one of the non-Juno standalone Penumbra Podcast episodes, and it fucked me up pretty badly. This is why I don't listen to a lot of horror. I found Death at a Low Price a bit rambling for my taste and also didn't like the sound effects. I liked Whatever Happened to Jonathan Green quite a lot (but there are only two episodes out and it's on hiatus)Perfume
Testing more of the BPAL imps from Kab. ( cut )Garden
Got a couple of small, unexpected capiscums from the plant that's still trucking on. I haven't really been doing anything with the garden, but there it is anyway.Other
Painted my fingernails in Pride stripes, so anyone who couldn't already tell just by looking at me what my position on Australian marriage equality is CAN NOW.Activism
Voted in the Non-Binding Plebiscite On Whether People Like Me Should Have Civil Rights. I voted yes, which only shows that my queerness and transness mean I'm unable to be properly objective on these issues. (That's sarcasm.) Did other activist-ish stuff on this issue (a lot, actually -- it kind of ate all
the time I'd been planning to spend going to Fringe) and also went to my local branch meeting of my political party of choice.
Which just goes to show what a deleterious effect 2017 is having on my behaviour, common sense, and happiness. I dont want
to go to branch meetings. I want to make vegetable/pasta stews, and eat them while reading lesbian Ruritanian romance and/or playing farming sims with retro graphics. I want to mess about rearranging deck chairs on my computer's window manager settings and not even think
of politics or natural disasters or misery. But 2017 does not care what I or anyone else wants.