Four novellas, each of varying quality. Simply put, each story brings its own vision, and they all accomplish the same goal in different ways. That'sFour novellas, each of varying quality. Simply put, each story brings its own vision, and they all accomplish the same goal in different ways. That's not a bad thing, but it does make it so the anthology feels ... somewhat inconsistent. I'll admit, I'm fairly new to reading anthologies, but this seems to me to be quite a good one, despite those small idiosyncrasies within the different styles....more
Chicks Dig Gaming is—as you may have guessed—about how women enjoy gaming. It's a collection of essays, personal anecdotes and personal growth storiesChicks Dig Gaming is—as you may have guessed—about how women enjoy gaming. It's a collection of essays, personal anecdotes and personal growth stories that holds true to a core, fundamental truth: women enjoy gaming as much as men do, are as good at it and are as nerdy (read: potentially obsessive) about gaming as men. Dice and cards don't care if the person holding them is male or female.
It's hard to nail down exactly what to say about the book because of its inherent disjointedness. Any book structured like this will have contrasting styles, viewpoints, vocabularies and any other qualities you care to mention. Also, the writing quality tends to be a little less than consistent all the way through, which suggests to me that there were just too many differences for the editor to reconcile. As a writer and editor myself, I understand completely. The book is *very* well done in that regard.
The primary flavor of the book though, is quite clear. "I'm a girl, and I like games." Shouldn't seem like much of a problem, right? Unfortunately, all you need to do is look into your local gaming scene (video games or tabletop games, take your pick), and you'll see a variety of viewpoints on the issue, ranging from people who love having a woman in a gaming group to the complete opposite. It's a wall of six-sided dice that will one day come crashing down. Or maybe a house of cards would be a more appropriate metaphor.
But this is where my one criticism comes from. While there are those stories like *An Axe Up My Sleeve* are laugh-out-loud hilarious, there are those others that come off as *so* feminist as to be off-putting to the average reader like myself. I can't necessarily speak for my co-host Matt, but some of the stories made me feel a bit uncomfortable and/or offended because of how the author expressed her view. Sure, misogyny is still rampant in society, and I hate it. I hate the fact that my boss might make less than some guy doing her same job. I hate that a woman with more experience than me might get passed over for a job at some point just because of her gender. But some of the authors in this book tread a dangerous line of pressing their point so hard as to have the opposite effect and undermine their own argument. Feminism is a good thing. Misogyny—or any bias based on something arbitrary—is wrong.
People should read this book. Not just gamers and not just women, although they should absolutely read it, too. If you're a guy and you game, you should pick this up and give it a read. Challenge your beliefs. It might be a little uncomfortable at times, but muscle through it. You will end up making your life better by broadening your mind a little and make your games better by bringing in some truly *great* gamers....more