Archive for the 'bookmaggot' Category

white girls, by hilton als

as an unreconstructed seventies lesbian, the commercial world of magazines and praise was corrupt, why would I want any part of that, why care, I don’t care.

bad indians, by deborah miranda

The original acts of colonization and violence broke the world, broke our hearts, broke the connection between soul and flesh. For many of us, this trauma happens again in each generation

raven stratagem, by yoon ha lee

sin x2 had said, They’re our Kel. Someone should be with them at the end, even if they never know or understand. Then the others, realizing it would not be dissuaded, left it alone. sin x2 wasn’t under any illusions that the hive Kel cared about it except as an instrument for necessary chores, and sometimes unnecessary ones. It knew that the hivemind became less and less sane with each passing year. Nevertheless, it considered itself Kel. Someone from its enclave should honor Kel Command’s passing.

hashtag funemployed hashtag summer of love

In May, the tech industry and I parted ways under circumstances I am contractually obligated to describe as mutual. Ever since, I’ve been having the greatest summer of my life. The bestie and I drove out to the eastern Sierras to see the wild mustang herds that live up around the Montgomery Pass. The high desert was hock-deep in wildflowers, and we spent three hours one sunny afternoon sitting on a hillside watching the wild horses fight and fuck. Mono Lake looks like the surface of another, possibly better planet, and asks to be further explored.

Then I won a residency at a writer’s center down in Santa Cruz and spent a week alone in a cabin on the edge of the redwoods. There were hummingbirds and mule deer and quail. I’d wake at 6 or 7 as usual, then read for a couple of hours, then have coffee and maybe go for a hike. Then, with only short breaks for meals, I’d draft scenes or type them up until late in the evening. When I got stuck, I’d copy out poems by hand.

I realized that, for longer than I can remember, I have been in an antagonistic relationship with time: late for work, behind on deadlines, scrambling to make as many memories with my kids and parents as I possibly could. Suddenly the days roll out before me, not as ordeals to be endured, but as hours for creative work, hours to hang around with the girls and Jeremy (without whom none of this would be possible), hours to spend at the barn, hours to binge on books.

I always regretted not taking real bereavement leave after Mum and then Dad died. I guess I’m doing it now, just a couple of years late. A friend said: “Your voice sounds lighter.” Idleness becomes me.

slightly behind and to the left, by claire light

It seems sad, but when men leave, the more they leave, the less their leaving means. Some leave before they leave, and others absent themselves without ever leaving. Some were never there to begin with — markers of men who took up the space where a real man should be: Father, Uncle, Minister, Mentor

extracurricular activities, by yoon ha lee

Jedao had a standard method for dealing with new commanders, which was to research them as if he planned to assassinate them.

ninefox gambit, by yoon ha lee

Someday someone might come up with a better government, one in which brainwashing and the remembrances’ ritual torture weren’t an unremarkable fact of life. Until then, he did what he could.

ben, in the world, by doris lessing

The girl became a television star and was to be seen every day on the screens in Rio. This was a kind of happy ending, and the girl certainly thought so, at least at the beginning of her career: when she was older she was not so sure.

hunger, a memoir of (my) body, by roxane gay

She is still small and scared and ashamed, and perhaps I am writing my way back to her, trying to tell her everything she needs to hear.

all systems red, by martha wells

As a heartless killing machine, I was a terrible failure.

the secret place, by tana french

Mates mean you’ve settled, made your bargain: this, wherever you are together, this is as far as you’re going, ever. This is your stop; this is where you get off.

gray, by pete wentz

My happiness is not in the best interest of their stockholders. We are commodities now, we are the down payment on some CEO’s waterfront property. We are making another album.

broken harbor, by tana french

People you knew when you were teenagers, the ones who saw your stupidest haircut and the most embarrassing things you’ve done in your life, and they still cared about you after all that: they’re not replaceable, you know?

for real, by alexis hall

…either everything we want is weird, or nothing is.

looking for group, by alexis hall

…if they get too close together, they get a buff called Sisterhood, which heals them.

five things make a midyear reading update

  1. 82 books read so far
  2. Two excellent novellas from Tor: All Systems Red and Passing Strange
  3. Three new authors of achingly lovely queer romance: KJ Charles, Alexis Hall, Roan Parrish
  4. Most incisive depiction of the tension between friendship and real estate in modern Ireland: Tana French‘s Dublin Murder Squad series
  5. How the hell does she write so prolifically and so well award: to Roxane Gay, for Difficult Women and Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body (a second time honoree, she also won in 2014 for Bad Feminist and An Untamed State) (preliminary theory: she just works really, really hard) (I love her)

dark emu, by bruce pascoe

…‘desert’ is a term Europeans use to describe areas where they can’t grow wheat and sheep.

mira’s last dance, by lois mcmaster bujold

She wants her own house? Pen tried to interpret this. Most women do, Des returned, at some point in their lives. Getting one without going through some man is made nearly impossible on purpose, I suspect.

maps out of hell

If Feather’s Your Blue Eyed Boys got me through the brutal aftermath of Mum’s death in the summer of ’14, sassbandit and were_duck’s Draculoids Will Never Hurt You is shaping up to be the essential text for this spring under Fascism. The irony is that I first read it in June of 2011 without losing myself in it. It took six more years of working for Better Living Industries to get to the point where I know I’ll die if I don’t art-bomb the Man and write punk love songs to all my friends. (Ironic twist: gonna die anyway!)

For the full immersion experience, I’ve spent the last week listening to Danger Days on endless repeat and reading The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys. In the back matter, Gerard Way, who turned 40 this week (thank you, good sir, for surviving your descent into Hell), describes “looking inward, to that inner 16-year-old girl.” As a former 16yo girl myself, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate those rare moments when the culture at large stops shitting on 16yo girls even for a nanosecond, let alone acknowledges them as something strong and important and worth protecting.

But Way also identifies the Man as… himself. His drive, his ambition, his ego, his death wish. I don’t know why I am even a little surprised. Every text that speaks to me on that deep level is somehow about complicity.

the likeness, by tana french

I used to believe, bless my naive little heart, that I had something to offer the robbed dead. Not revenge—there’s no revenge in the world that could return the tiniest fraction of what they’ve lost—and not justice, whatever that means, but the one thing left to give them: the truth.