Books

Nicola Barber: Viking Life: Clothes
You know, it's funny - battles and academic discussions of the Viking Age and how it influenced this group and that, those are well and good - but if you just want to quickly remind yourself how people dressed or how a house looked inside, it's the children's section of the library you want to visit.

Anthony F. Bogaert: Understanding Asexuality
Interesting.

Patricia Briggs: Dragon Bones
Don't get me wrong, this is an entertaining and reasonably well-written, if not particularly groundbreaking work of fantasy. I just wish it hadn't gone with the "oh, and the really big bad is gay" approach to inclusivenes...

Patricia Briggs: Silver Borne

Jan Guillou: Dandy

William Jones: Secrets of New York

Kvindestudier 5.: Utopi og subkultur
It's always interesting what survives to be interesting and what seems mostly ridiculous more than 30 years later. Personally, I found the article about the Beguines interesting, as I hadn't heard about them before.

The Participatory Cultures Handbook

Den store karakterbog: 151 portrætter af fiktive personer

Sherlock and Transmedia Fandom: Essays on the BBC Series

Preben Meulengracht Sørensen: Norrønt nid: forestillingen om den umandige mand i de islandske sagaer
Which has also been published in English. Anyway - apparently nobody's gotten around to writing the big book of gay Viking sex lives. At least, I haven't found it. Admittedly, this might have to with the fact that what we know of the old Norse, we know from archeology, from contemporary writings by outsiders, and from stories written down centuries later. Still, this is a very interesting book if you are interested in learning more about the concepts of nith and argr (and I now just want a scene with Ragnar calling the earl various female animals just for the hell of it) - admittedly, it's in the context of the sagas, which were the stories written down centuries later, by Christians (which might certainly have influenced how the concepts were seen), and anyway, some of them are no better as historical source material than modern historical novels, but still. Interesting. Of course, the fact that while a proper man stayed a proper man as long as he just fucked (both men and women) and didn't get fucked is all well and good for fic purposes, but then there's the bit where it was an insult if someone accused you of fucking a friend, since that was something you did to enemies, so even implying you'd do something like that to a friend. (Ah, the complications of historically (in)correct shipping - I still maintain that Athelstan will make Ragnar and Lagertha a fine wife. Eventually.)

Johan Theorin: På stort alvar: femton ölandska berättelser
I'm rather fond of Theorin - his Öland novels, I mean. I like their mix of mystery, family drama and ghost story, and several of these short stories tie in directly to the Öland books, and the rest are still set there, so. My three favourites are: Utgrävningarna i Rälla ödekyrka, which is a very wellwritten and pretty understated piece of Lovecraftian fiction, Grenverk, which tells the tale of a very nasty magical spring, and Kyrkväktaren, about a new priest who arrives to his new church only to find that it has an honest-to-god grim.

Til deres dages ende: ny dansk fantasy 2012
Okay, so there's never enough good Danish fantasy - especially if you don't count the stuff written for kids. And it's pretty clear that several of the writers of these stories are more horror than fantasy - unhappy endings are the vast majority and several (for instance Bronze by Richard Ipsen, De umætteliges kreds by Mikkel Harris Carlsen, Mare, mare minde by Teddy Vork) would have fit easily in a horror short story anthology. Still. And the stories vary from straighforward historical fantasy to the frankly odd tale of Zebraungens jul by Sven Ørnstup (it involves a baby zebra wil shotguns for legs, a dragon, a circus and Santa Claus) to a fairly clever tale (Tale af guld, tavshed af sølv by Kristoffer J. Andersen) about a villain using the philosopher's stone to gain power by devaluing gold.

My favourites: Animaxit by Gudrun Østergaard - a short tale of strange, mood-affecting and addictive gemstones. Admittedly, the sometime-in-the-future setting and the technobabble explanation makes it as much sf as fantasy, but anyway. Til deres dages ende by Lars Ahn Pedersen, a collection of post-happy endings of fairytales that are - decidedly less happy and more psychologically fucked up. Træ by Martin Schjönning, a nice bit of worldbuilding about a sentient species living in a gigantic tree and a couple of youths exploring to the very edge of the known world and making some shocking discoveries about the nature of said world. Et horn i siden by A. Silvestri, which features some surprisingly nasty unicorns.

Sven Ørnø: Dyndhåb
Question: why do some author's interpret social realistic history to mean "as nasty, gritty, unpleasant and rape-y as I can write it" (seriously, fanfic spoils me - sometimes I'd sort of like a non-con warning in pro-fic.)


Comics

Jason Aaron: Scalped: Knuckle Up

Jean Van Hamme: XIII: Opération Montecristo

Lidwine: Le Dernier Loup d'Oz: La Rumeur des eaux

Hiro Mashima: Fairy Tail 16.
Hiro Mashima: Fairy Tail 17.
Hiro Mashima: Fairy Tail 18.

Brad Meltzer: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Twilight

Jiro Taniguchi: Chichi no Koyomi

Yana Toboso: Black Butler 1.

Joss Whedon & Scott Allie: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Last Gleaming
I liked season 8 better at the start than at the end. It feels very - hey, hey, the gangs all here. Buffy the superhero, Spike and his steampunk bug-driven spaceship (I think I need that story), even the Master. I dunno.

Norihiro Yagi: Claymore: A Child Weapon
Norihiro Yagi: Claymore: Genesis of War
Norihiro Yagi: Claymore: The Lamentation of the Earth

Total number of books and comics read this month: 27
Currently reading: Immortal In Death by J.D. Robb, Fanny Hill by John Cleland and Star Wars: A Long Time Ago vol. 1.
.

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