Monday, August 8, 2011

Library Monday, 8/8/2011

Tonight at the library, a homeschool steel drum band. Where else can you go to see that sort of entertainment for free? Also, I wish I had a camera with me. There's a pair of shelf sets in the YA section, where the YA librarian (who is also the Children's librarian, and she's hella cool) puts books of some note, or books on a theme, or something of that nature. Today, she had one side of the shelf all in red covered books, and the other side all in blue covered books. It was pretty awesome, in a quixotic sort of way.

Four books this week.

J.D. Robb - Conspiracy in Death

I read Holiday in Death during one or the other of my research trips, and kinda liked it. This is the book right after that one, so I grabbed it.

Peter Carey - Parrot and Olivier in America

This is supposedly a very funny book set in the United States at about the time of the French Revolution. I'm a little leery, because the author's name is much much bigger than the title of the book (which bodes ill), but the description (picaresque, historical) appeals - we shall see.

Carrie Vaughn - After the Golden Age

Carrie Vaughn trades in werewolves for super heroes - Celia West is the non-superpowered child of the two biggest superheroes on the planet, and this is a book about how she deals. It could be funny, we shall see.

Trevanian - Shibumi

So, on the new book shelf there was a sequel to this book, by someone else. The principle character sounds interesting (he's an assassin! he's very good at what he does! It's hard to explain why I thought the character looked appealing, actually. I like assassins? In print, that is.), so I thought I should read the first book first. Finding it took some doing. I'm a little leery of this one too, because one named author? But we shall see.

I would like to call your attention to a series of related posts re: the use of the term Mary Sue in casual criticism of books. Here's Holly Black's take on it, here's a post from Zoe Marriott, which inspired Holly Black's post, and here's something by Sarah Brennan, inspired by Zoe Marriott's post. I have used the term in the past, specifically in regard to John Sandford's "Prey" books - in that context, I mean that Sandford seems to be engaging in some wish fulfillment through his primary character. However, Ms. Black, Marriott, and Brennan suggest that, in general, the term is use to dismiss strong female characters. The suggest that this is wrong on a number of levels, and in the context of their objections, I agree, and shall endeavor not to use it in that way.