said_scarlett: (Default)
The kitchen is clean!

And not just...tidied up clean. Clean clean. [livejournal.com profile] nijawial and I busted our butts cleaning out the cabinets and fridge, organizing, doing dishes, wiping counters, the whole shebang.

I also finally got laundry started. One load already in the dryer, one in the washer. I'm taking a small break now before I move on to either the dining area or the bathroom. One way or another, we're getting the house clean.

I always feel good when I'm cleaning. It's just nice to be up and about, and not stuck in bed exhausted and miserable.

And now for something completely different...

Book Recs!

As I'm getting myself to the library more often, I need book recommendations! And I'm not picky, I'll read nearly anything. Horror, fantasy, true crime, humor, memoirs, whatever. Anything that you've read and you enjoyed and think I'd enjoy.
said_scarlett: (Silent Hill Sims)
Welcome, welcome, welcome new friends! There've been a good number of you over the last week!

I've never been terribly good at those 'about me' things. I can never quite think what to say, what's important enough to warrant inclusion, what anyone else will care about. So I tend to stick to the bare basics and assume the rest will come out one way or another.

A Bit About Me )

I'm still debating back and forth on whether or not I want to watch King's commentary on Ass Weasels...I'm sorry, I mean Dreamcatcher. I know he's not terribly proud of it, but still. I can think of no excuse other than painkillers and post-accident dementia for this one. The novel is clearly regurgitated bits of every novel that came before it, jumbled and muddled together with little coherency.

I've gone back to Shadowland in the wake of all this...mess. While Straub's tendency towards Victoriana in his prose is irritating, the plot and premise are sound and interesting. It's also quite clear that Mr. Straub has either a) never visited Arizona or b) has forgotten what it's like here. We have no sprawling, dark stone gothic architecture about. We certainly don't have dark, foreboding, gothic boy's boarding schools with lush verdant greenery surrounding them.

Due to weather, it looks like I'm having a shakeup in routine and may be doing errands today rather than tomorrow. We've got some bad storms moving in. Again.

And for those who play Wajas...I finally bred my first 'for traits' Waja. Bane, Female, 100% cheetah, 100% belly, visible mane, LQ=86 I'd like to put her up for sale, but I'm not entirely sure what the price should be. Her folks, who had the same markings and mutations but slightly lower litter quality, were 100,000 WC each. Ah, and she's Gen 7.
said_scarlett: (Ayumi want)
Holy hell.

I've been writing for almost four hours straight - with a cigarette break in there somewhere - and while I've plugged in a good word count so far, I'm starting to see normal words as nonsense and make the most ridiculous spelling errors. Plus, I seriously considered partially stale, left-over jilted bride wedding cake for breakfast*. That means break time! Which will most likely consist of eating lunch, reading, and catching up on internet things.

I finished up No Humans Involved. Entertaining book, and I am definitely not adverse to reading more Kelley Armstrong. It reminds me a little bit of the Dresden books, just in the 'snarky magical person solves paranormal mysteries while trying to keep the norms out of it and leading a normal life'. And it's very...situational, in the same sense that the Dresden books are. So think Butcher meets Laurel K. Hamilton, and I think we've got a good basis of comparison.

I did start Shadowland by Straub yesterday, but I have to admit, 60 pages in and it has yet to grab me. I've enjoyed his collaborations with King, but on his own... there's a tendency towards Lovecraft, and not in the good way. The setting is the 1960s, but Straub has a habit of stuffing Victorian wording into both the dialogue and prose. I'm putting it aside for the moment to read my two library books instead, and will return to it later.

I'm starting my library reads with Bag of Bones.

I'm about 25 pages in, and already I'm hooked. It reminds me of Lisey's Story, but considering we're dealing with a novelist who's just getting over the death of his wife and the horrors that follow, it's unsurprising that parallels would be drawn between the two. But this time it's the novelist who stumbles upon secrets left behind and is over and over again stricken by the loss of his spouse. It does seem, at least so far, to be another Love Story: Stephen King Style. And I do adore when he writes love stories, because his characters are so real. It's always such a gritty, honest portrayal of human relationships, and that's what makes it so painfully beautiful.

Plus, there have already been nods to three other King books. William Denborough, Thad Beaumont and Joe Wyzer have all been mentioned so far. When King references himself/his other works, I always get a little happy inside.

I'm feeling good about my own project, and that's all I'm going to say about it. I'm too superstitious to give even the most vague hints as to what it's about. And with how I've been struggling and picking at only to drop most of my original works, I'm not taking a single risk with this one.

_____________________________________

*I do not know if the wedding cake that was given to [livejournal.com profile] nijawial's mother at her office did indeed come from a jilted bride or not, but generally one does not bring an entire untouched wedding cake to an office for co-workers to divvy up if there was an actual wedding. It's a delicious, gargantuan sugar and lemon meringue deal, though, with very lovely bridal piping on it. And that fancy frosting. Mmmm.....
said_scarlett: (Default)
We braved the snow and cold to journey (in one of those fancy automobiles) to the library!

And it was worth it. I scoped out the libary book sale and snagged three or four good research books, and a Peter Straub novel. I've read his collaborations with King, so I'm curious about his solo work. And all of that was just two dollars! Then I checked out two King books I've been meaning to read but haven't had a chance to - Dreamcatcher and Bag of Bones. I know Dreamcatcher wanders off into bizarre-o land - or at least that's what I've been told - but I'm not above giving it a try. The only King novel I flat out refuse to read is Cell.

I read an excerpt and that was enough for me. While I do adore and admire (and all those other things) Stephen King as a brilliant man, I am not so blinded by adoration that I believe everything he writes to be the greatest in the world. The man has written some books which are, in my opinion, bad. Not many, but they're out there. Gerald's Game springs to mind....

Cell falls into that category as far as I'm concerned.

And I'm currently reading No Humans Involved, by Kelley Armstrong. I'd heard good things about her, or as good as I ever hear about supernatural romance. Not that I think the genre is bad, it's just the folks I usually talk shop with are not fans of the genre, and therefor don't often have much to say about it. Save snarky comments regarding Laurell K. Hamilton. But doesn't everyone have snarky comments regarding her these days?

Anyway, I'm enjoying Armstrong. Nothing's too graphic, the characters aren't ridiculously fleshed out or interesting, but they aren't just cardboard cutouts either. Side characters have back story and variation, and while there is a bit of purple prose and the heroine can come off as too-good-to-be-true (drop dead gorgeous ex-beauty queen who's now a TV star and a powerful necromancer), it's an engaging read. And the romance aspect takes a back seat to the paranormal mystery aspect, which I enjoy. I'd definitely be willing to give her other work a try.

In non-book related news, we borrowed a snow shovel so we can shovel the driveway, and hopefully go food shopping tomorrow. We're getting down there on supplies, and we ate the pizza we got yesterday.
said_scarlett: (Silent Hill Sims)
It's still snowing.

And it's snowing hard.

But I've been able to get a lot of reading in! Books I've finished:

World Without End: Ken Follet's long-awaited follow-up novel to Pillars of the Earth. I've never read Pillars of the Earth, but I'd heard good things about it, and World Without End isn't a direct sequel. It doesn't matter which one is read first. It's a long, thick, meaty novel but I was done with it in three or so days. It's a sprawling piece, covering well over 30 years of the lives of the four primary characters. We meet them first as children, spread between 8 and 12 years old. While the cast of central and semi-central characters eventually reaches more than two dozen, with the novel jumping back and forth between them, the author keeps up with things well and each story intertwines with all the others.

It's a well written book with characters who grow and change and develop, and it's clear that Mr. Follet has researched historical England in great detail. From the church to the serfdom to the war with France, the historical aspects are not prettied up or watered down in the least. Which means that there is a fair bit of violence, rape and whatnot. The advancement of medicine in the 1300s is also dealt with, and is extremely interesting. The paragraphs upon paragraphs detailing medieval architecture and building bored me a bit, but it was easy enough for me to glaze over.

And despite the fact that we're dealing with relatively historically accurate fiction, there are strong female characters who defy tradition as best they can. My only gripe with the book is the end, but discussing why I'm upset would only spoil it. It kept me interested, and there were places where I couldn't put it down. I felt for the characters, which is important to me. If you like meaty historical fiction, definitely look into it.

The Graveyard Book: Perhaps this is blasphemy, but I much prefer Gaiman's young adult fiction to his novels. And The Graveyard Book didn't disappoint. It's not a terribly complex story, and as it's for young adults it's not terribly long, but it's well crafted, captivating and has a dark sense of whimsy that anyone familiar with Gaiman's fiction will recognize immediately. As usual, he puts his own personal (and usually quite clever) spin on classic themes, folklore and Things That Go Bump in the Night. The writing is clever and descriptive without being heavy handed, and the characters are quirky and unique.

Plus, there's just enough violence and scary situations to keep both youngsters and adults engrossed and not bored. It left me wanting more, which is always a good indication of a well written story.

I've completely forgotten what's next on the list, as far as reading goes. I'm slowly plodding my through some manga - Tsubasa Chronicles, to be exact - but as I've never read a single CLAMP series, I'm a bit lost and feeling like I'm not getting the full enjoyment out of it that I should be. I know I've still got a pile of sci fi, a Victorian murder mystery, and some WWII diaries....

But I'll probably be through those before too much longer. ;)
said_scarlett: (Default)
So I've been reading a great deal lately. I may not be able to get many new books, but I've got a ton of used ones I've been able to get my hands on. I read in the bath and before bed, and if I'm feeling it, when I first wake up while I have my breakfast.

I read Robin McKinley's 'The Blue Sword'. It says a lot about the genre that without glancing at the publishing date, halfway through I muttered to myself 'written in the early 80s'. Having only ever read 'Spindle's End' by her before, it was quite a contrast. It's not a bad book, but it's a bit dated and I can't honestly say it flows terribly well. One of my pet peeves is modern, American slang or references in fantasy books where it has no place, and 'The Blue Sword' falls prey to that in more than a few places. The world of Damar is interesting, however, and if you're a fan of world-building it's worth it just for that. And we do have a very strong female lead, so there are definite points for that. Harry kicks a great deal of ass. It's a quick read, I was done with it in a couple of hours, but it's not a bad one at all. Plus it's nice to see a relatively unique and non-stereotypical depiction of a tribal people in an 80s fantasy novel.

Hell, Mercedes Lackey still can't manage to pull that one off.

Now I'm reading Ken Follet's 'World Without End'. I'm picky about historical fiction, so I wasn't sure how I was going to find this one. But combine a time period I'm fascinated with and the scandals of the church and I'm there.

Once more my main issue is with modern terminology being terribly out of place. The novel takes place in the 1300s, and while I certainly don't expect it to be written to period, I highly doubt that the wool merchant's daughter would be thinking that the carpenter's apprentice was 'so damn sexy'. Correct me if I'm wrong here, but something just doesn't seem right about that.

Other than that, it's a very interesting and rather gripping book. I'm always fascinated by the mini-theocracies that sprouted up in England - Priory Towns and the like - so it's certainly caught my attention. Plus, the author knows his stuff. He handles the church and what went on in the church very well and very accurately so far. I do fear a Robert Jordan-like tendency to have the story spread over too many characters, however. But I'll have to hold my judgment until I've made more progress in the novel.

I also finished re-reading The Stand, but I have very few new insights save that it's gotten a few of my muses restless again.
said_scarlett: (Default)
I'm seriously considering walking up to Fantastic Sams and getting my hair done today. Just the cut, not the color, as I figure I can strip the parts I need myself.

I'm Going For Something Like This )

But a bit longer, I believe, as I want to keep some of my length. Obviously, it goes without saying that my back is feeling better. I also want to start on my room, now that I have 20 adorable Hello Kitty wall thingies to stick up everywhere. I think my fairy and pirate pictures have to migrate elsewhere. They do look a bit out of place amongst the wallscrolls and anime posters and pink brocade curtains.

It's alright. I've accepted that I have the decorating taste of a twelve year old Japanese girl.

I'd forgotten just how bad Robin Cook books can be. I can't remember thinking 'that's the stupidest thing the character could have done!' more times than when reading whatever one I read yesterday. You'd think all these important doctor people would be smart enough to, say...explain themselves when met with questioning over perfectly legitimate business, rather than start throwing punches or devising elaborate, Scooby-Doo like plans to get away. Or at the very least get out the words 'I'm a doctor'.

Also, why can no one ever impart information over the phone? Apparently something as simple as 'can we meet at this restaurant?' requires sneaking up someone's fire escape at 3 AM to be asked. *headdesks*
said_scarlett: (Default)
Yes, it's that time of the year. I've begun my annual reading of The Hogfather. :D I'm also reading 4 Past Midnight, but that's not terribly seasonal. ;) Though it does give me something to talk about!

4 Past Midnight is one of the few King books I've yet to read. I'd never come across it, never wanted to pay full price for it, and always had so much else to read. But I found it at the thrift store yesterday, so I snagged it.

I've started on The Langoliers. I've seen the mini-series, and those of you who have seen it...well...the mini-series alone doesn't inspire great confidence. But it's an older movie, and they only could do so much with special effects, and while furry bouncy balls with teeth aren't particularly frightening, I got what they were going for.

I assumed, as I believe is rational to do with any TV or movie adaptation, that there are vast differences between the mini-series and the original novella.

So far, that's not true. So far, I've seen very few differences. The characters are mostly all the same, the scenarios are mostly all the same, hell even chunks of dialogue seem to be the same. I'm a bit surprised, but at least pleasantly so!

Today is a lazy day where I think I will spend most of it in front of the computer. Until later, when I finally actually do hang lights like I've been swearing I will all week. (Things keep coming up!)

I ought to fix myself some breakfast.....
said_scarlett: (shana; all that I am)
So I reached 23k and it was decided I needed a little break. What with the drooling and babbling nonsensically. ;)

So here is some stuff completely not related to NaNo at all! To prove there is life outside of Nano!

We finally got all the Halloween decorations, and now the porch is being converted to a sort of work space. [livejournal.com profile] nijawial has her art table out there, and my sewing table is set up. I need to somehow move my desk to the shed, but it's out of the way for the moment.

The rats are vastly amusing when we walk by their aquarium. As they're on the floor, they can clearly see just how giant we are, as Nija pointed out to me yesterday. And they are in awe. Hank is still fat, but with his preference for running on the wheel, hopefully he'll slim down some.

My mother is still doing well, though a little frustrated with some of the limitations she has while her teeth and jaw heal up.

If you're into psychedelic music and you haven't heard Infected Mushrooms yet, why not? I highly recommend their Doors remixes. I am generally not one for covers and remixes, but these cannot be missed. Same with Dream Theater's Pink Floyd covers. And I rarely praise covers or remixes.

I'm still reading Dead Beat, and still trying to get unstuck in Twilight Princess. Jumping and I are not friends, at all. Need to go back and finish up SH3 again, too. Am tempted to try a Vincent cosplay at some point. But Claudia first!

Steamboy? Not as awesome as I was led to believe.

Now time to catch up on cleaning, because holy crap, it's Friday. When did that happen?
said_scarlett: (Atmo Sperm)
All those pesticides, the exterminator making repeated trips....

And all it took was some herbs in the cabinet. I don't know whether to be amused or not.

I finished Blood Rites last night! Still not sure how I feel about the massive revelation in there. And now am eagerly craving the next one. I have a million books to read, however. I grabbed a bunch at the DAV (they have fifteen paperbacks for 1.00$) and should poke at them. Nothing terribly special, though I did replace my lost copy of The Stand. And found the Satanic Bible, which will come in very handy for research for my horror. Plus I have the books I got at Hasting's during their sale, the Lovecraft collection....

There really aren't enough hours in the day. I'm going grocery shopping this morning, then cleaning, and I want to post and play Twilight Princess. And finish SH3.

Oh! The acrylic ink + rubbing alcohol wig dye? Works like a charm. For five dollars, you can dye your wigs with a result that turns out looking professional! I took a blond wig to dark brown, and it looks wonderful. All you do is mix acrylic ink and rubbing alcohol, put it in a spray bottle, and spray it on, fully saturating the wig. Let it dry overnight, and bob's your uncle, you're set.

I forget how to send texts via email. :/
said_scarlett: (Default)
First off, many apologies to all who pinged me on Gchat last night. I was off bleaching some undershirts that had gotten mysteriously stained, and then vegged out on the couch for a while.

I'm over at my sister's. I'm feeling relatively sick today, and I don't know if it's just because I got so little sleep last night, or there's something that needs seeing to. My insomnia has returned with a vengeance, and I managed maybe a few hours last night.

I wanted to bring D the Halfblood Chronicles, but I'm lending out every single copy of the first book. (Except for my nice hardcover, but that stays on my shelf.) I still need to replace the third book, too. I figure it's high time she moved on to glittery elves. ;)

I was tempted to bring her some other Mercedes Lackey books - she's been warned - but really, I don't think she'd she enjoy the SERRAted Edge series - sure you've got sparkly elves, but they're sparkly racecar driving elves. A pity I can't find my copies of the Bardic Voices books, I think she'd like those.

My god, is there a classic rock band Dream Theater can't cover? I adore their Pink Floyd covers, but their Queen and their Zeppelin, their Genesis and their Kansas are just as amazing. And for bizarre, fannish reasons, them doing a cover of 'Carry On My Wayward Son' makes me extremely happy. (I know half my Flist associates this song with SPN, but for me, it will always be James' song.)

The kids are doing chores and I'm trying to kick my brain into gear. I have a ton of epic plots going on right now!

And I shall share another one of my little Henry observations: Henry is, arguably, one of the nicest, gentlest, sweet guys. And yet...he's most comfortable with one of the bloodiest, most violent melee weapons there is.

I wonder if I can make a plea for Burger King for lunch....
said_scarlett: (memory)
Woo, am catching up with RP! And my ponies. And holy crap, Cabrilla's genes are...insane. And dominant. Three air foals, all essentially variations on the same color. Purple. I'm gonna have to start selling some....

I'm still feeling drained and weak, but other than that, I'm mostly alright. [livejournal.com profile] nijawial! Let me know when you want to get together, now that I'm back on my feet! :D I'll bring video games and wine coolers!

I did a hell of a lot of reading while I was laid up in bed. Non-spoilery thoughts to follow!

Fables: Animal Farm: Wow, they stepped up the darkness and violence in this arc! And I'm not complaining, it just took me a little by surprise. Still very much enjoying this series, and love the characters. And I see what you mean about the art, [livejournal.com profile] zinjadu, but I honestly like the changes. I kind of want to cosplay Rose Red at some point. I can't thank [livejournal.com profile] nekokoban enough for getting me started on it!

Pet Shop of Horrors: Toyko V2: I think I actually do like the Tokyo series better than the original. I've always had a very soft spot in my heart for Pet Shop of Horrors - my first exposure being years and years ago, when I bought the 'movie' on VHS - bootleg, unbeknowest to me. There's just this wonderful Twilight Zone/Outer Limits feel to it, moreso in Tokyo than the original. And is it just me, or is there more humor? D seems a little more...whimsical. (And, um, I kind of want to seek out fic. I don't even know why.) Definitely eager to get my hands on the next volume!

Runaways: Tore through the second two trades, and holy crap! Love it. Love the characters, love the plot, love the twists, loved everything. And I can safely say that I absolutely loved how the pairings ended up. (I totally called one in volume 2, and was happy to see I was right and not just hoping. :D) There's...more of this series, right? I mean, it's still going on in monthly issues, right? Because I need more. Thank you so much, [livejournal.com profile] attilatehbun, for sending me these!

I also read two of the Dark Angel companion books, which I very much enjoyed and...recommend to anyone who liked the show, basically. They're pretty typical for companion books, but the ones I've read so far make a damn good effort to keep the feel and world of the series preserved, which is a step above a great many other volumes for various series.

As for my whacky email from yesterday, I deleted it and blocked the email address, because as hilarious as it was, I don't feel up to attempting to investigate or figure out what this person has against me. I would have responded to the weird review, too, but it was anon with no email left. I shall only say that if someone has trouble finding fluffy Roy/Hughes fic on ff.net, they're doing something wrong.

I need to do laundry now, because I am completely out of clean clothing! Then it's back to RP!
said_scarlett: (naughty tonks art by xenoface)
Alright, Firefox issue solved!

Now, about my trip!

Flight home was less insane than the flight out. No strange children were placed in my lap. I did have to deal with idiots who didn't bother to look into baggage and weight restrictions and took up twenty minutes pawing through luggage to try and reorganize things. And I had to deal with a wheelchair attendant who was.... Not good at what he did. Again we had the 'don't touch me/try and pick me up without asking first' issue, with an added bonus of 'if you accidentally end up with your hand on my breast, don't leave it there'.

I was able to get a hell of a lot of reading done.

First up was The Looking Glass Wars. I can see why some people have a few issues with the writing style, I'll say that right off the bat. The juxtaposition of serious writing with things that sound like childrens' book writing does throw me sometimes, but overall, I enjoyed the premise and the characters and how the author altered and rearranged things. I thought it was well done, and I thought it did a wonderful job of showing respect for the original while still giving a fresh take.

Then we had the first trade of Fables. Really, really enjoyed that. Again, brilliant way to take classics and give them a new, modern twist. Cannot wait to get my hands on the rest, and the spin off series.

Then I moved on to the manga I grabbed. Picked up Petshop of Horrors: Tokyo volume 1. And I'm glad I did. It takes a lot for a manga to grab me, but this one has succeeded. I've always loved Petshop of Horrors - from way back in the days of anime VHS, when I saw the OVA/movie. First two stories were perfectly creepy and disturbing, and the third one just... I don't know, it hit me in all the right places, and the ending made me cry in a good way. The little never before published story due to content.... I'm sorry, I found it ridiculous and amusing.

Then there was the Silent Hill comic arc, Sinner's Reward. Art's gorgeously drawn, and it's Silent Hill. That's really all I can say in praise of it. The character designs.... Jack is unmemorable, Jill looks just like Lisa, and Sarah looks like Eileen and Angela had a lovechild together. The plot and dialogue are trite and cliche, and I've read fic on FF.net that was better done.

And while this was not a comic, just a preview with interviews and concept art, oh holy fuck does Marvel's adaptation of The Stand make me quiver with orgiastic joy. I cannot put into words how excited I am about this. The only character designs out so far are Flagg, Frannie, Larry, Nick, Trash and Stu, but they're all just spot on and perfect. And the writers and artists are so familiar with the character and stories, and King himself is overseeing everything, and it's going to be 5 arcs of 35 issues each and I shall swim in it! September 10th! Midnight release!

So then I got home, and not only is Origins waiting for me, and an amazing crafty grabbag from [livejournal.com profile] dragontrap - dude, thank you so much, it's all awesome! LIQUID LATEX!!!! - but my dad has decided we're getting a Wii.

I'm exhausted, and I still need to unpack, and since I know have 12 new DVDs, I need to reorganize my little entertainment area. I may not be getting to RP until tomorrow.
said_scarlett: (D Angels Fall)
Wow, I woke up in a really awesome mood this morning. I have no idea why. Maybe I've inadvertently feng shui'ed my room or something. But when I got up I was bright eyed and bushy tailed and full of energy. And I still am, but there isn't much for me to spend it on. I had myself an iced chocolate chai for breakfast, and now I'm contemplating lunch and bath before I settle in for some RO time. I'm always torn as to which should come first.

I finished Demon Deathchase the other day. You might remember my posting about it, and all I'd heard about how it was full of rape. I was warned so emphatically and repeatedly that it nearly put me off reading the book. But I loved Bloodlust, and I really wanted to see how the stories differed. So I read it.

Maybe fandom has jaded me. I don't know. But there were two instances of rape in the book, and neither were described in any detail. One was just mentioned in passing as having happened, and the other was a 'fade to black' sort of thing. Compared to Raiser of Gales - which was, indeed, full of rape and incest - I really don't see what the big deal was. And psychologically speaking, the rapes made sense and it wasn't random or OOC. Unless you get stuck on movie characterizations. Oh, Grove...

I'm reading Tale of the Dead Town now, and I think it's my favorite. If only for the interaction between Pluto VII and D. I never thought I'd actually like the idea of D in an actual pairing, but I think I could totally get into Pluto/D. Because Pluto wins.

Alright, I'm going to make some burritos and take a bath, and then e-mail Cori for some RO time!
said_scarlett: (fma snow)
Yeah, technically I'm cleaning but I strained something so I'm waiting for pills to kick in.

I finished 'When the Bough Breaks'. Yeah, I didn't enjoy it very much. Didn't like the characters, didn't like how a lot of stuff was handled, and didn't like how most of the violence seemed more for shock treatment than for actual plot. There were too many scenes that just didn't fit, the storyline seemed chunky and poorly thought out, and the characters suffered from that habit of Mercedes Lackey's to write personalities rather than characters.

If I read any more Mercedes Lackey, it's going to be re-reading the Bardic Voices series or reading the rest of the Last Herald Mage series. Why I actually want to finish that series, I have no idea. Vanyel is a whiny, annoying, super-speshul Gary-Stu. And it's rare that I refer to canon characters as Gary-Stus, but he deserves it. He's got a life that trumps any Anne Mcaffery heroine, and that takes a lot. Between the Super Rare Never Seen Before Combination Of Powers, the Super Special Powers that developed late in life (which omg never happens like this!), the fact that he's the Most Powerful Herald Mage ever and can do things no one else can, the fact that every character pretty much ends up wrapping their life around his, the fact that he has the Horrible Awful Abusive And Unloved Past, and the fact that he goes out of his way to misunderstand everyone in order to wallow in his self-pity... yeah. Oh, and he's the most beautiful young man ever. Plus he sings and plays instruments and writes. His major flaws: being too sad and thinking he's weak for every little thing.

I wanted to smack him through most of the book. Also? I had a lot of issues with how the same sex stuff was handled. I really didn't like the fact that every gay male is a stereotypical caricature of gayness. Delicate, feminine, slim, emotional, fond of pretty clothing and looking perfect... (Have I mentioned Vanyel's completely unbelievable and nonsensical sexuality crisis yet? No? I'll spare you.)

The super-specialness is not exactly surprising, from Mercedes Lackey. Her characters tend to be over the top and Sue/Stuish. Rune, the heroine of 'The Lark and the Wren', suffers the same omg!tragic past, the abuse, the emotional stunting, the awesome special powers, the love and devotion of every character she meets (except for the people who hate her and want to rape her/beat her/make her miserable/kill her) and the constant stream of ANGST! ANGST! But Rune, at least, doesn't wallow in self-pity too much. But in the Bardic Voices series, pretty much every character we meet is powerful, amazing, awesome, and over-the-top. Nightingale, anyone? Wren? Kestrel? Robin? Yeah. Hell, even Shana, of the Elvenbane, is pretty Suish. I bless Andre Norton for muting most of the annoying crap, though.

But I still go back and read her books. I'd call them a guilty pleasure, but I sometimes wonder how much of a pleasure they really are. The Last Herald Mage, yes. I don't know. I can't stand Vanyel (or any of the other characters, except maybe Savil) but I still want to see what happens.

Alright, pills have kicked in, back to cleaning!
said_scarlett: (fma snow)
Yesterday was a quiet day. Hung out at the apartment, chatted with [livejournal.com profile] mikazuki, and then headed out to dinner with [livejournal.com profile] shadawyn. Dinner was delightful, I have a fridge full of meat, and now it's cold. Which is better on my tummy than the heat, which has been killing me. Today was kicking around the Ave a bit and maybe some other stuff later.

I picked up Raiser of Gales the other day at Kino's. I finished it this morning in the bath. I enjoyed it more than the second one, but I find myself realizing I can't really recommend these books to people. They're violent, bleak, depressing and don't have happy endings. I highly enjoy them, as I love the world and I love D and I love the storytelling, but I don't feel like I can give them glowing praise and tell everyone to read them.

There are two things in the books which are sticking points with me, however.

One: the heavy emphasis on how beautiful D is. After the first multi-paragraph explanation of how beautiful he is, and how even straight men lust after him, and how he is perfection made whole, we get it. Really. He's pretty. It gets old after a while, and long winded descriptions of D's flowing hair and perfectly chiseled cheeks and inhuman grace lose their effect after a while. It's pretty well put across early on that D is the most beautiful things on the face of the planet. It doesn't need to be stated every chapter - or three times in one.

Cut For Discussion of Sexual Assault And Minor Spoilers For Demon Death Chase )

Ah well. I'll probably end up reading it anyway. The fourth one is also out, and I am hoping they translate all seventeen. I grabbed some crunchy light fantasy at the used book store today - I am weak and bought Mercedes Lackey books. Also grabbed a Ghatti book, the first book of one of the newer series'. Ghatti's Gambit, I think, is the series? Yay something light and fluffy after the massive depressing tale that was Raiser of Gales.

Now it is lunch time.

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