(WHAT IS THIS SORCERY?!?!)
Om Sara Medberg i dagens Vbl.
All the Rage examines the shame and silence inflicted upon young women in a culture that refuses to protect them.
I said in a status update that this book is basically BBC Sherlock with a paranormal twist and now, having finished the book, I stand by that description entirely. This book is so many things and all of them are good. It has all the atmosphere of a creepy Victorian mystery, all the humourous banter of BBC Sherlock; it has complex characters and wonderful writing. And most of all: it is just so damn charming.Awwww!
This novel – among other things – offers an incredible portrayal of this world and its precarious balance between feminism and misogyny, offering a skilful take on female empowerment and agency with a great pair of main female characters.
You ain’t gonna like what I have to tell you, but I'm gonna tell you anyway. See, my name is Karen Memery, like memory only spelt with an e, and I'm one of the girls what works in the Hôtel Mon Cherie on Amity Street. Hôtel has a little hat over the o like that. It's French, so Beatrice tells me.”
What a magical, though strangely honest and thoughtful book.
" Sometimes she veers into purple prose and I didn’t even care. I was like “YES KISS HER VOLUPTUOUSLY WHATEVER THAT EVEN MEANS!” "
From today Seamus Finnegan & Dean Thomas could officially get married in Ireland! Well done Éire #WeVotedYes #WeMadeHistory— Devon Murray (@DevonMMurray) May 23, 2015
" Speaking of women: one of the constant elements of the “worldbuilding” is how women are under rape threats all the time. I lost count of the times this threat is repeated in the novel. But here is the thing: the threat of gendered violence is wallpaper, background decoration that is used more as a shorthand for how bad things are in the Martial Empire. Who are the women getting raped? What happened to them? What are their stories? We don’t know – we never know – especially because it’s the male characters who worry about their friends getting raped, all the time. Rape here is not only used as background decoration to show how “dark” the world is but also used as motivation for the male characters. Worst of all: rape threats are continuously linked with “beauty” – a female character slave or not, should worry about that threat the more beautiful they were. As though rape is a thing that happens only to beautiful women and wasn’t directly connected to power. "
It's a fantasy world with dragons, but apparently we need to see constant sexual violence & mostly white men in power because "real life"— Imran Siddiquee (@imransiddiquee) May 19, 2015
If your female characters have to be raped to be "interesting," examine why the same isn't said for your male characters. Also stop writing.— Gaby Dunn (@gabydunn) May 18, 2015
" För mig är litteraturens viktigaste uppgift att vara en trigger. Att uppröra, beröra, få mig att se mig omkring i världen och verkligen, verkligen se den. Det gör den ofta genom att skildra det allra lägsta hos människan. Utan någon som helst warning. "
#czpMRB Reading @EWein2412 's Code Name Verity helped me believe that I could learn to fly, and now I have a pilot's license.— Lindsay Kitson (@Lindsay_Kitson) January 24, 2015
" Astonishing. In the morning, when she sat working at that table of correspondence, silhouetted by sunlight...
Her hair truly did look like an octopus.
It was the way she wore it, he thought. Or maybe the way it wore her. It all sat perched atop her head in that big, inky blob. And no matter how strenuously she pinned it, dark, heavy curls worked loose on all sides, like tentacles.
Of course, it was an entrancing, strangely erotic octopus. Ransom worried this might be how fetishes developed. "
“Oh, but this gift isn’t the same as an ermine. This is property. Don’t you understand how rare that is for a woman? Property always belongs to our fathers, brothers, husbands, sons. We never get to own anything.”
“Don’t tell me you’re one of those women with radical ideas.”
“No,” she returned. “I’m one of those women with nothing. There are a great many of us.”
"She was a gift.""Who gives a weasel as a gift?""One of my father's admirers.""I should think it was one of his enemies."Izzy joined him in sitting on the table's edge, resigned to explaining the whole story. It made a good illustration of how her father's literary success and the public's adoration never translated into much practical benefit."My father wrote an ongoing saga of knights, ladies, villains, sorcerers... castles. Anything to do with romantic chivalry. And the tales were all framed as bedtime stories told to me. Little Izzy Goodnight.""That's why Archer was expecting a young girl?""Yes. They always expect a young girl," she said. "The heroine of the tales kept an ermine as a pet. A fictional ermine, of course. One that was brave and loyal, and every bit as majestic, pale and slender-necked as her mistress. And this fictional ermine managed to accomplish all sorts of clever, fierce, fictional deeds, such as chewing her mistress free of bindings when she was kidnapped, for the third time, by the fictional Shadow Knight. So a devotee of my father's stories thought it would be a lovely gesture to give real-life Izzy Goodnight a real-life ermine to call her very own."Wouldn't that be precious? the fool must have thought. Wouldn't it be marvelous and adorable?Well, no. It wasn't, actually. Not for Izzy, not for Snowdrop.
" Bloody hell.
Somehow, he'd wound a lock of her hair about his finger. There it was. Right This Moment. And he had no recollection of doing it either.
What was he coming to, when a woman sat in his lap, he gave her a stern what-for... and ten seconds later, oopsy-daisy and la-di-dah, he went and twirled a finger in her hair?
That was not ducal behavior. It certainly wasn't normal behavior for him.
He tried to nonchalantly withdraw his finger from its embarrassing predicament, but he recoiled too quickly. The curling strand of hair tightened around his knuckle like a slipknot.
He tried again, pulling harder. Panic began to build in his chest.
Dear God, it wouldn't let him go. "
" Miten on päivä menny, Aleksi kysyy. Kerromme lasten kanssa kuorona eväsretkestä, vadelmapillimehuista ja lauantaimakkaravoileivistä, rahkasammalsohvasta ja naavapartakuusesta, kuusenkäpykeosta ja kuppiin kerätyistä karpaloista. Kerromme pohjaan palaneesta hernekeitosta ja kermavaahtopannukakusta, josta tuli päiväruoka. Kerromme sohvalle levinneistä muovailuvahapötköistä. Kerromme pitkistä unilauluista ja nukkumatista, joka kiiruhtikin naapuriin. Kerromme viuhuvista nyrkeistä ja potkivista jaloista, itsestään kääntyvistä pahviympyröistä afrikan tähden pelilaudalla. Aleksi ei moiti, ei haukottele eikä käännä katsettaan vaan kuuntelee jokaisen sanan kiinnostuneena loppuun. Ai, semmoinen päivä, hyviä ja huonoja hetkiä, niin kuin meillä kaikilla monesti on, kylläpä isillä oli jo ikävä teitä. "
" Yhä olemme kahden, minä ja hän, kaukana kotoa. Istumme vieretysten kolisevilla toimistotuoleilla, nojaan otsani Aleksin olkapäähän. Tämän takia jo melkein kannatti tulla raskaaksi, kuiskaan. Olisipa jonoa ja viivästynyt aikataulu. Olisipa vikoilevia koneita ja sairastuneita sairaalantätejä. "
" Minusta tuntuu, etten jaksa.Älä välitä, mulla on ihan samanlaisia päiviä.Tämä ei ole ohimenevä päivä, tämä on luola, jonka suuaukko on sortunut.On mullakin pitkiä alakulon jaksoja raskauden alussa, mutta silti tuntuu, että oon jotenkin lähempänä Jumalaa.Minä olen vain lähempänä kuolemaa.Se kuulostaa pahalta.Olen rukoillut sairautta, joka säästäisi hengen mutta veisi kohdun. Kohdunpoisto on suomen kielen kaunein sana. "
" Whatever the internal mechanism that moderated the human capacity for joy, mine had long been broken beyond repair. And I knew this was a poor substitute, a base shadow cast on the cave wall, a reflection in a tarnished mirror of ordinary things like happiness, love, and hope. But there were moments, fleeting moments, lost in the responses of my body to his, when it was almost enough. And, God, I wanted, I wanted. These crumbs of bliss. "
"I gotta say, babes," he said in a nasal Essex whine, "you're giving me sutcha bedroom look."I stared down into his face, so close to mine. Babes? And, dear God, that accent."Well," I heard myself say, "play your cards right and I might consent to do more than look.""Omigod, you talk like the Queen."I blinked. "Pardon?""Are you in parliament?"I had the feeling I'd lost control of the conversation. "What? No. I'm a writer.""Omigod, really?" He sounded both impressed and bewildered, as if I'd said I went fishing on the moon.
" Over its waters the willows drooped their long hair, bucking in the gusts as if with sobs. Against the dark surface she could make out the white waterlily buds, like small hands reaching up from beneath the surface. "
" Francis Hardinge’s imagery in Cuckoo Song, moreso than any other book I’ve read from her, is flawless. Imagine teeth of thorns, and tears made of cobwebs, and porcelain dolls who scream and glower and accuse. Imagine a girl so insatiably hungry that she eats rotted apples rife with worms, and necklaces, and ribbons and pages of books. Imagine a roaring fire meant to consume a small child, and eternal winter that follows someone wherever she goes. "
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