I read one of the 5 Hitchhiker books every year and I still snort and giggle out loud and make moderately serious mental notes to get entire paragraphI read one of the 5 Hitchhiker books every year and I still snort and giggle out loud and make moderately serious mental notes to get entire paragraphs tattooed on me eventually. ...more
I read one of the 5 Hitchhiker books every year and I still snort and giggle out loud and make moderately serious mental notes to get entire paragraphI read one of the 5 Hitchhiker books every year and I still snort and giggle out loud and make moderately serious mental notes to get entire paragraphs tattooed on me eventually.
Edit: My 2012 re-read was actually the audio book, narrated by Stephen Fry. H2G2 and Stephen Fry? Perfection can be improved upon, it seems. ...more
It's impossible not to re-read this on a regular basis and every damn time I still cry and laugh and cry some more and listen to the soundtrack far toIt's impossible not to re-read this on a regular basis and every damn time I still cry and laugh and cry some more and listen to the soundtrack far too loudly.
If only the other MM novels I've read were this good. Why some authors get published while others are side-lined as writer's of "mere" fan ficiton, I'll never know because unlike Lynn Hagen's distasteful "Nutter Nero", the characters in The Doors of Time who deal with the adult Jensen both adjust their lives to suit his mental & emotional issues AND help him maintain a healthy sense of humour about it - which is how I've seen it handled in the real world - and it makes all of them stronger for it.
I think that Jensen's vision of how Jared will look as an adult highlights exactly where good fantasy/paranormal/science fiction writing comes from: putting a genre-related spin on something very real and "mundane". We all see friends and lovers and children at the start of a relationship in light of their potential and in light of who they can be if they choose to show us their best, and it is just wonderful how Jensen seeing Jared's potential is shown as a literal thing.
I also particularly adore how the story acknowledges that we don't always get over childhood prejudices - which you don't see very often in any written work.
If the names were changed and the CGI were good enough, I would love to see this as a movie (an auditory "like Water For Chocolate"?) Where would they find two actors good looking enough for the lead roles though? Especially since one would have to be a fantastic actor with musical talent and the other would have to be.. eh.. tall and hot. ...more
My brain keeps telling me that most of this was a non-fiction textbook for humanity's future. I assume that either my memory is fuzzier than expectedMy brain keeps telling me that most of this was a non-fiction textbook for humanity's future. I assume that either my memory is fuzzier than expected or that said brain has edited the memory to fit in with years of being a relatively smart woman surrounded by excruciatingly dumb/mean men and being horrified at how many copies they keep spawning while all of the intelligent ones breed minimally and responsibly.
Reading this in my teens made me start paying attention to how women were treated in fiction which of course opened my eyes to what was going on around me in real life. Even in fiction written by women, we marginalise or belittle ourselves (JK Rowling - why is a woman with a daughter writing novels with a male protagonist?) and to stumble upon this book at a time in my life when my peers were teasing me for reading Asimov & co (boys books) when they were reading things with Fabio on the cover has turned out to be incredibly important in shaping who I've become.
The book has its flaws, but the idea of a world designed by women has never lost its appeal. ...more
Review for all 10 parts: Easily the best fantasy book I've read this year. Any reports of confusion and cliffhangers you see should be cheerfully ignoReview for all 10 parts: Easily the best fantasy book I've read this year. Any reports of confusion and cliffhangers you see should be cheerfully ignored - these books are gorgeously layered and detailed and even when a new arc in the story or new book in the serialisation forces you to reset the world you've built up in your head back to zero, the writing is so good that you don't hesitate to follow Gin Hale wherever she leads you. Just as you're falling in love with a city or in hate with a character or in lust with one element of physical/magical ability, Hale reboots everything and presents you with a fresh new story that will suck you in all over again and leave you marvelling every time you see a thread that links it to what you already know. Or contradicts everything you think you know, which is even better. Don't look for spoilers - just enjoy being in the dark and trust that the author is doing it so they can blind you with their brilliance later. You can judge by the quality of the writing n book #1 that this will be eminently readable even when you're waiting for the plot lines to converge. And they do. Holy. Flaming. Crap. Some of those reveals in book 10?!
I must also point out that this also contains one of the better romances I've read in a fantasy novel too. The restrictions of the world around them forge emotional bonds that cannot be consummated, let alone celebrated, so every brush of fingers, every stolen kiss, has a greater impact than most erotica I've read. When sexy times do happen, they made me sigh out loud despite not being explicit at all.
I would love it if the entire series was gender-swapped, or that the world created was one in which this didn't have to be a m/m novel, but I guess I'll just have to keep an eye on Hale's future work and see what happens. ...more
This book has smart, snappy flirtation; a hero who is (for once) flawed for very real reasons; and a heroine who follows one of the best ugly ducklingThis book has smart, snappy flirtation; a hero who is (for once) flawed for very real reasons; and a heroine who follows one of the best ugly duckling paths I've ever read. Every moment in this book gave me the "good book sigh" and I am delighted to find a new author who understands how to write within this genre without her books becoming a dull list of tropes. My favourite moment in the novel (and why I gave it 5 stars and not the 4 I'd originally thought it was worth) is a conversation I always want historical heroines to have with their heroes since said heroes are always ignorant of how different their freedoms & acceptable behaviours are from those of their women and never seem to care about how their smallest actions can hurt her:
“Why are you so controlled by your mother?” “Controlled by . . . ?” This time she did roll her eyes. “Let me see. Because I am an unmarried female with no fortune of my own, no property of my own, and no rights of my own. Unlike you, I am not at liberty to rendezvous in secluded corners, even with someone who has no interest in my virtue, because it would be improper. Ruinous, even. Not that anyone has shown the slightest interest in besmirching my virtue, but appearances, you know, are so important for a young lady.” She said the last in a creditable imitation of her mother’s voice, but then sighed. “I don’t suppose your mother cares about your reputation, but mine cares a great deal about mine. I really don’t want to spend the rest of the Season locked in my room just because you couldn’t manage to apologize in a normal and genteel manner, so please let me pass.”