Tag Archives: Carly O’Connell

Book Review: Philip Pullman’s The Ruby in the Smoke

The Ruby in the Smoke, Book One of Philip Pullman’s Sally Lockhart series, never gained the same fame as The Golden Compass and the rest of Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, perhaps for good reason. It’s a cute story but doesn’t have quite the magical draw of epic world-building that bolsters his other works. From a feminist perspective, I appreciated the feisty female protagonist who demonstrates math skills and business acumen, but on an intersectional level, the book fails. The novel is meant to be a treatise against opium and the role England played in encouraging the opium industry, but it is rife with simplistic or downright racist depictions of Asians and the East. Continue reading Book Review: Philip Pullman’s The Ruby in the Smoke

Diversity Among Shadowhunters: Cassandra Clare’s Lady Midnight

If you’re looking for a good YA series with bisexual, Hispanic, or autistic representation, it might be time to hop on the Dark Artifices train, as the second book was just released last Tuesday, May 23. From the author who brought us our first Jewish vampire and an immensely powerful gay warlock comes a new spin-off series from her original The Mortal Instruments world. Today I will review Lady Midnight (Book 1 of The Dark Artifices) by Cassandra Clare, particularly focusing on the minority characters Mark, Christina, and Ty. Continue reading Diversity Among Shadowhunters: Cassandra Clare’s Lady Midnight

Best Worlds and Settings in Modern Sci-fi/Fantasy

Recently, I’ve been reading Literary Wonderlands: A Journey through the Greatest Fictional Worlds Ever Created by Laura Miller. It outlines literary works with the best world-building across history, from early myths to modern sci-fi/fantasy franchises. Inspired by this, I’d like to share with you some of the books with the most immersive settings I’ve ever read, books that had me walking their worlds long after I closed the pages. (I skipped the obvious ones like Harry Potter, which were of course featured in Literary Wonderlands.) Continue reading Best Worlds and Settings in Modern Sci-fi/Fantasy

Women of Shannara: A Feminist Look at Amberle and Eretria

 

I’ve mentioned the Shannara Chronicles by Terry Brooks several times before, and now with season two of the TV show tentatively predicted for Summer 2017, I decided it was time for a re-read. I chose to start with book 2 of the series, The Elfstones of Shannara, because that is where the TV show starts from. Published in the 1980s, Elfstones stands apart from many high fantasy epics by featuring two prominent female characters. Amberle and Eretria, while both involved in a love triangle with protagonist Wil Ohmsford, present two very different notions of femininity in a genre that often lacks any representation at all. But can they be said to be feminist characters? Continue reading Women of Shannara: A Feminist Look at Amberle and Eretria

What Is This “New Adult” Genre and What Geeky Books Belong to It?

Perhaps your local bookstore has added a new shelf label or your favorite author has announced a new series under this mysterious category. In any case, you’ve found yourself wondering, what exactly does “new adult” mean, especially in terms of literature? New Adult is the next step up for those of us who love YA but have graduated into the next stage of our lives and want something that hits a little closer to home. Usually featuring protagonists aged 18–30, New Adult fiction engages with themes such as sexuality, developing independence, change, and embarking on a career. While Young Adult works are often set in high schools, New Adult is usually set in college or the early years beyond schooling. Continue reading What Is This “New Adult” Genre and What Geeky Books Belong to It?

Feminist Questions to Ask Yourself While Reading

If you’ve read some of my previous literary analysis posts, you know there is always that feminist voice in the back of my mind while I read, critiquing the novel’s treatment of women. While this may dampen my enjoyment of some works, it helps me to be a more engaged and aware member of society. So how do you train yourself to start analyzing the feminist merit of a book? It comes from asking a series of questions while you read. You can also adapt these questions to check for representation of other minority groups as well, such as LGBTQ, people of color, people with disabilities, etc. Continue reading Feminist Questions to Ask Yourself While Reading

Daily Geekette’s Favorite Activist Authors

Yesterday, March 8th, was International Women’s Day as well as the “Day without a Woman”  protest arranged by the organizers of the Women’s March. March as a whole is also Women’s History Month. In honor of these events, I thought I would share with you lovely readers some of my favorite female activist authors. Some were authors first, some activists first, but all deserve to be celebrated. Continue reading Daily Geekette’s Favorite Activist Authors

How to Start Your Own Geeky Book Club

Did you know that the reason I write for this blog is because of a book club? In high school I bonded with Co-Editor-in-Chief Kayla through a YA Sci-fi & Fantasy book club that she ran at the local Borders (R.I.P.). Book clubs are a great way to meet fellow book geeks and nerd out about your favorite genre. But what do you do if you can’t find the perfect book club in your area? Start your own, of course. I’ll tell you how. Continue reading How to Start Your Own Geeky Book Club

Feminist Literary Analysis: The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss

The new epic fantasy on everybody’s lips is the Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss, not least because of its recent association with musical genius Lin-Manuel Miranda. Miranda will act as creative producer of Liongate’s new film, TV, and video game franchise based on the books. This fact and the recommendation of a dear friend was all the convincing I needed to start book one, The Name of the Wind. Yet while the writing is beautiful and the plot is enticing, I am disappointed to say this book had a distinctly un-feminist tone. Continue reading Feminist Literary Analysis: The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss

Reads of the Resistance: What Books Inspired the Women’s Marchers

From Boston to New York to Washington, D.C., many of the Geekettes attended Women’s Marches last Saturday. And wherever we go, our love of reading goes with us! Books can be transformative, introducing readers to new ideas and perspectives. So that’s why we decided to ask the people we met at the march about feminist books that impacted their lives. Here are some of our results: Continue reading Reads of the Resistance: What Books Inspired the Women’s Marchers