Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Today's Fluffy Post. On Fast-Foody Books

These are books one reads quickly, once and for fun. Here's my list of complaints about fantasy and detective novels:

1. Enough with the vampires. ENOUGH! I don't want to read the blurb on yet another Vampire Hunter or Vampire Fucker story. Indeed, enough with all those stories which take some mythical creature, explicitly created as ALIEN to humans, and then turns and twists it into just another kind of human or elevates one single human to be part of those aliens.

2. Enough with the quasi-feminist fantasies or science-fiction books where the heroine of the story is the only woman, pretty much, in a world inhabited by men, and where she never faces any sexism whatsoever but gets completely accepted as the Leader Of Men while at the same time being taken care of by that hunky lover-guy.

3. Enough with recipes in detective stories. No more talking dogs, cats or hedgehogs who solve crimes unless you can write really, really well.

Soooo curmudgeony. But if I can't complain on my own blog, where can I complain?

To demonstrate my carefully balanced objectivity, I'd like to point out that Laurell K. Hamilton's short story "Can He Bake A Cherry Pie" in the collection Never After is most excellent. It retains the simple fairy tale format, with layers of symbolism, and yet it manages to surprise the reader* in several places. It's feminist, natch, and also very funny and good brain food.
*Well, me. But writing "the reader" sounds more objective and turns my opinion into something fact-like.