what I’ve been reading lately…

… and, as usual, I’m all over the spectrum and I darned well like it!

I think there’s nothing more boring than a person who stays within one genre and never sticks her/head outside to see what else is out there – take a risk and you just might find something new AND good!

so, without futher ado, what I’ve been reading lately… and liking!

Undercover by Lauren Dane

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Off to La-La Land yet again…

… because obviously there’s a full moon SOMEWHERE in the universe that’s making people go just a bit nuts right now.

First, here’s a rant about how Stephenie Meyer’s “Breaking Dawn” is a racist rant in disguise. Now, let me put up a disclaimer right now – I haven’t read a whit of her books. Probably not going to because vampires are sort of overdone to death right now and I’ve got too many books in my queue to think about adding another trio. And especially because it’s so popular; I tend to enjoy going off the beaten track.

However I fail to see how any respectable publisher would have NOT seen this before it got to publication. Again, much like the Jewel of Medina controversy (more on that later) we’re dealing with people making assumptions on the author’s part that may or may not be true. I could see if this series were all self-pubbed out of some vanity house and free of outside vetting and reading, but it’s not. And to assume that this got past the editors and all the people at the publishing house would then move towards the Big Conspiracy That They’re All Racists As Well, which is just silly. It’s very flattering to think that you’re the first one to discover something but trust me – there’s enough hoops to leap through at a publishing house that someone else would have caught this if it were present. Unless you subscribe to the Conspiracy and then, well… back to the full moon theory.

Could Meyer’s religion influence her writing? Sure… it’s hard to not allow our upbringing to affect and influence our writing. But sometimes a cigar is just a cigar and a vampire or werewolf just that… not a hidden diatribe against anyone else.

Meanwhile, over at SBTB the prologue to “Jewel of Medina” is now available as a pdf – the author graciously put it up for public consumption.

I liked it. I thought it was interesting and I plan to pick up a copy when it hits the shelves because it looks like a good read. And I won’t be afraid to read it in public.

You can check out the rampant chatter as well which seems to have come down to screaming “Can!” vs “Can’t!” and people yelping that white women can’t write about Islam or something along those lines… I’d just read the prologue myself and make up your own mind. Maybe it’s just because I’m Canadian but I don’t want anyone else deciding that I should or shouldn’t read something or WRITE something because I’m not qualified because of my race or religion or personal beliefs. But then, maybe I’m wrong.

And a final note, posted in that discussion on SBTB:

“The bigger your market, Montag, the less you handle controversy, remember that! All the minor minor minorities with their navels to be kept clean. Authors, full of evil thoughts, lock up your typewriters! They did. Magazines became a nice blend of vanilla tapioca. Books, so the damned snobbish critics said, were dishwater. No wonder books stopped selling, the critics said. … It didn’t come from the Government down. There was no dictum, no declaration, no censorship, to start with, no! Technology, mass exploitation, and minority pressure carried the trick, thank God.
….
“Colored people don’t like Little Black Sambo. Burn it. White people don’t feel good about Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Burn it. Someone’s written a book on tobacco and cancer of the lungs? The cigarette people are weeping? Burn the book. Serenity, Montag. Peace, Montag. Take your fight outside. Better yet, into the incinerator.”

–from Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury, 1953.

’nuff said.