Thumbs up for Passing Strange by Ellen Klages. Fantasy.
I’m not sure why the cover says “inspired by the pulps, film noir, and screwball comedy,” because this novella bears no resemblance to any of those things, except that it is set in San Francisco and one of the main characters paints covers for the pulps. What it actually is is a sweet love story with just a teeny bit of fantasy.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel. Memoir, biography, graphic novel.
Any memoir that can keep me obsessively turning pages has got to be pretty amazing. The rumors are true: Alison Bechdel’s half-memoir, half-biography about how her father’s repressed homosexuality and her own more open lesbianism inform each other over the course of a lifetime is beautifully structured, wonderfully illustrated, and pleasingly literary.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for The Ghost Dragon’s Daughter by Beth Bernobich. Fantasy.
If you (like the heroine) are a young lady of the Seventy Kingdoms, you might use a dip pen and inkwell at school, or you might be so lucky as to have a portable calculor and stylus; but either way you had better be wary of staying out too late lest the queen’s watch demons get you.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for Batwoman: Elegy by Greg Rucka, illustrated by J. H. Williams III. Graphic novel.
I try not to think too hard about the plots of things like this. (Two words: evil twin.) Basically, I’m just in it for the pictures. In this case, the pictures don’t actually make it easier to follow what the action is, but they are so very pretty I don’t care.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps by Kai Ashante Wilson. Fantasy.
If you’d said “Emma, you will stay up way too late riveted to this sword-and-sorcery (except actually science fiction) adventure/romance/tragedy about love, compassion and brotherhood told in a bizarre and somehow exquisite mishmash voice that bops around from sentence to sentence between fairytale, elegant classicism, and (inexplicably but gorgeously) African-American vernacular”…I would have shrugged and sighed because weirder things have happened.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for Waterways by Kyell Gold. Young adult romance.
Sometimes I think I follow my own reading taste in the exception rather than the observance. See, I was at Worldcon and I ended up at a panel for Furry writers…this would make sense if I were a fur but I’m not, long story tell you later…and the moderator spoke glowingly of the works of Kyell Gold, specifically this book.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for Daughter of Mystery and The Mystic Marriage by Heather Rose Jones. Fantasy/romance.
It is safe to say that historical fantasy lesbian romance is not my genre. So why did I read these? Because the author said something intelligent (I don’t even remember what, now) in response to one of my tweets. Empires are built on less, my friends.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller. Historical fiction.
Weirdly, I’ve never actually read the Illiad (or not all of it, anyway) but since my interest in the Greeks was originally piqued by reading The Firebrand and the The Odyssey at an impressionable age, I am intimately familiar with the story. The Song of Achilles is not, however, just the story of the Trojan War retold; it is about the lifelong love of Achilles and Patroclus (which requires a couple of brave authorial decisions I think Miller pulled off beautifully, but I can’t comment without spoilers).… >> Read more