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may_lily: (in a world of my own)
Tuesday, December 31st, 2013 09:45 am
From my tumblr.

Those who are looking for non-binary characters in children’s books might be interested in L. Frank Baum’s John Dough and the Cherub, published in 1906. The titular John Dough is a human-sized gingerbread man brought to life, and the Cherub is his child companion Chick. Chick’s gender is never stated. The author uses the pronoun ‘it’ where necessary, but avoids pronoun use as much as possible.

Chick is not a literal angel - ‘cherub’ refers to their beautiful, angelic appearance. Brave and eternally cheerful, they accompany John Dough on his travels and protect him from the people who want to eat him. Chick’s gender ambiguity is never portrayed as odd. They and John Dough reappear in Return to Oz, as guests at Princess Ozma’s birthday party.
may_lily: (Rapunzel's hair)
Sunday, July 22nd, 2012 02:29 pm
One of the packages that I thought was stolen turned up yesterday. I'm not actually convinced that it was delivered - it was very late, and a little torn so you could see what was inside it. So either it was just delivered late, or the thief saw that it wasn't worth anything and returned it.

Either way, I'm really glad to have it. It's 'The Life of High Countess Gritta von Ratsinourhouse'. It's a 19th century German novel written by a mother and daughter, and I believe the daughter married into the Grimm family. It's about a little girl, Gritta, who is sent to a strict convent run by a greedy, unscrupulous nun, who engineers an escape along with all the other girls trapped there, and after several adventures they end up in a magic land where they can live as they choose to. It was translated into English for the first time quite recently, and I thought it was wonderful. Gritta belongs in the Hall of Fame with other girl adventurers like Alice, Wendy and Dorothy. It's really a shame that the translation probably won't get much attention.

I did discover that there was a German movie based on the book made in the 80s. It doesn't look like it's been translated into English, but I still want to see it.

Fingers crossed that the other two books I'm missing will turn up.
may_lily: (Default)
Monday, December 12th, 2011 10:15 pm
I had been wanting to read 'Dracula the Un-Dead' by Dacre Stoker, a relative of Bram Stoker, for a while. I found it on special eventually so I took the opportunity. I didn't get further than page 2, with Mina describing how Dracula travelled to England: 'He concealed himself in this strange fashion because although a vampire may have the strength of ten men and the ability of many forms, he will burn to ash if struck by the light of the sun.'


The first time a vampire ever burned in the sun was in the 1920s with the film 'Nosferatu'. There's clearly something powerful about the concept for it to have endured for so long, but it has nothing to do with Bram Stoker's Dracula. The book is somewhat inconsistent in regards to Dracula's issues with the hours of daylight; sometimes he seems to be in a coma during the day, at other times he's quite happily out and about. However, sunlight certainly does not cause him any harm. I have no issue with a 're-imagining' of Dracula giving him the sunlight weakness, but if you're going to write an 'official' sequel I expect it to be as consistent as it can be with the book.

It's a shame, because it's the first book I'd heard of which involved Quincy Harker, Mina and Jonathan's son, but I'm not going to bother with something that turned me off so quickly when I've got so much else I want to read.
may_lily: (Default)
Tuesday, May 25th, 2010 05:51 pm
I've had this on my mind for a while, and Neil Gaiman's recent racist fail made me think of it again. I've seen his novel Anansi Boys highly recommended, even on feminist blogs, and most of it's certainly an enjoyable read. But it has some really problematic parts that don't seem to get noticed very often.

Cut for spoilers and discussion of rape )
may_lily: (Kai and Nagi)
Tuesday, April 22nd, 2008 06:09 pm

I thought they were bound to come eventually, but it was taking such a long time. And from what I've seen, Tokyopop's way better than DMP at novel translations, so they should be actually readable too!

I'm so happy!
may_lily: (Kai and Nagi)
Thursday, March 20th, 2008 08:43 am
Dark Walker?


I actually don't know how good it is, but I know that it's fantasy BL with illustrations of black-winged boys by Hirotaka Kisaragi. I am so there.
may_lily: (Kai and Nagi)
Tuesday, September 18th, 2007 03:10 pm
The first volume of Ai no Kusabi is going to come out soon in English. I had originally planned on buying it, but I'm a lot more aware of my tastes in BL now, and I'm just not going to enjoy a tale of bondage, however much of a classic it's supposed to be. However, this book came up on my recommendations recently.

Naturally, the wings on the cover caught my attention. However, I didn't like the expressions on the guys' faces, and I assumed it was a manga. So I thought I'd wait and see if I could find a review after it came out, and decide whether or not I wanted it then. But then I took a closer look at the cover, and saw 'I's Novels'. A BL novel about white- and black-winged angels? HELL YES!

I only hope DMP's editing/adapting skills have improved.
may_lily: (Momoko and Ichigo)
Saturday, June 23rd, 2007 08:32 pm
This is the cutest mascot character ever. I want to play this game just for him, even though I've never played an otome game before, and it's adults only which I'm a bit wary of.

It's making me want to re-read Catwings. I read the first two books when I was little, and loved them - I even dressed up as one of the cats for my school's Book Day. I always thought it was just the two, but I was looking on Amazon recently and there's two more!
may_lily: (I'm the inner babysitter!)
Tuesday, April 10th, 2007 07:24 pm
Could this be really real?

If it is, I'm amazed, and to be honest, a bit disappointed. The first few Discworld books just aren't that good, compared to the rest. So much more could be done with a Witches franchise, or the Watch, or Death. Maybe even the later Rincewind books. But I hear a fair few people actually get turned off Discworld by reading the first books first - I don't want that to happen to the TV series!

I looked at alt.fan.pratchett, and someone said that apparently it's The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic put together, rewritten a bit to be 'more coherent'.

Meanwhile, Wikipedia (look at the note beside I Shall Wear Midnight under 'Lists of Novels') and this interview suggest that Terry Pratchett is writing a possibly non-Discworld novel codenamed Nation, to come out after Making Money. That's something I look forward to seeing!

I also found on Wikipedia that Esk (from Equal Rites) might be making an appearance in I Shall Wear Midnight, her first since her original book. I haven't read Equal Rites in many many years, so I barely remember anything about her, but I know that a question a lot of people ask is 'Whatever happened to Esk?' so hopefully they will finally be satisfied!
may_lily: (Wintersmith by esmecat)
Tuesday, December 26th, 2006 08:02 pm
I've just found out that the Wee Free Men has been translated into Japanese as 魔女になりたいティファニーと奇妙な仲間たち (Majo ni Naritai Tiffany to Kimyou na Nakama-tachi). It's not too much of a surprise, given the possibility of an upcoming movie, but I must say I don't think much of the title they've chosen. Certainly 'Wee Free Men' probably wouldn't work too well, but I would have thought something like 'The Feegles' or 'Little Men' would work better. Perhaps they were trying to draw a parallel to 'Tensai Neko Maurice to Sono Nakama-tachi'? It makes me wonder what A Hat Full of Sky would be called.

It would be very interesting to see how things like the the Feegles' speech patterns were translated.
may_lily: (OMG Slash!)
Monday, November 20th, 2006 07:46 pm
Stuff coming out that makes me happy:

At long, long last, the Beauty and the Beast TV series DVDs! I fell in love with the show when I was 15 - Catherine and Vincent was probably my original OTP. I was never able to see it again since then, but I kept hoping there'd be a DVD eventually.

Naturally, I preordered it immediately, and what should come up on my Amazon recommendations but the Beauty and the Beast soundtrack. It's been out since last year, and I never knew it existed!

Amazon also recommended me the new Jim Grimsley novel, the Last Green Tree, which I also didn't know was coming up. It's the latest to be set in the universe of Kirith Kirin and the Ordinary.

On the licensing of Mika Sadahiro's Organic Sons: I totally called it! Sadahiro's been getting a lot of attention lately, and Organic Sons is a nice, multi-chapter story, without the violence of UGH or the 14-year-oldness of Pathos. I'm not sure it's even been scanslated, too. I'm pleased I was able to predict it!