lunabee34: (writer by sukibluefiction)
NOTE: If you are looking for something specific, the dreamwidth version of my journal is a better bet than the livejournal version. I have cleaned up html errors from early days and extensively rehauled tags for better searching on the dreamwidth version only.

FANFIC MASTERLIST: These are listed in order of their post dates within each fandom. All fic has also been posted to AO3.

An asterisk (*) indicates that the fic has been remixed.

AVENGERS )

ATS )

BATTLESTAR GALACTICA )

BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER AND ANGEL THE SERIES )

DIE HARD )

DR. HORRIBLE )

FARSCAPE )

FIREFLY )

HARRY POTTER )

STARGATE ATLANTIS )

SG1 )

STARGATE UNIVERSE )

SUPERNATURAL )

STAR TREK 2009 )

STAR TREK TOS )

STAR TREK VOYAGER )

STAR TREK DS9 )

RPF )

MISC )

REMIXES )

YULETIDE )

Gospel

16/10/17 17:35
lunabee34: (reading by sallymn)
Gospel Gospel by Wilton Barnhardt

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Let me begin with the obligatory statement (seriously, check the other reviews) that Dan Brown wakes at night and cries into his pillow because nothing he's written has come even close to being as good as Gospel.

The novel takes place in the 80s and concerns an aging, male academic and a young, floundering, female grad student on the search for The Gospel of Matthias; the modern day search is interspersed with chapters of the gospel they're trying to find and translate. I read this for the first time as a grad student (somewhere between 2001-2003), and it blew me away. I was studying to convert to Catholicsm at the time, and I'd been reading a lot of Elaine Pagels (gnostic gospels) and hagiographies of saints and the history of Christianity and medieval mystics, and this book was just fascinating. It's heavily footnoted (and while the narrative is fictional as well as the gospel itself, the footnoted information is factual according to the author as is all the currents events stuff happening in the novel and much of the theological conversation the characters have). This was the first time I heard of the cult of Mithra or of Catherine of Siena wearing Jesus's foreskin as a magical wedding ring (naturally, it was invisible to everyone but Catherine).

On re-read, my love for this book is only slightly diminished. The Gospel of Matthias is both hilarious (unintentionally so because Matthias does not get what's happening around him half the time; he's constantly misinterpreting events) and ultimately moving because it's the quest of a man who'd been a minor disciple, only in the presence of Jesus a few time and mostly chosen because he's rich and can bankroll the ministry, to recover his lost faith.

Most of the book is the characters having theological arguments, telling theological dirty jokes, and cataloging all the bizarre anecdata of the Catholic Church. Those parts are still fun.

I like that the book turns the usual narrative about an aging male academic and his female grad student groupie on its head. Dr. O'Hanrahan is full of man pain; he's a womanizer and a drinker, and he lost his wife and kid in tragic accidents, and he's angry and disappointed that he never wrote that bestseller or made a huge mark on the academy despite all his promise--and the whole point of the book is that all his existential angst and nearly all of his problems are of his own making and he's reaping the consequences of his choices. Also, he and Lucy never have a romantic relationship (although the book seems to be going there a couple times, and I started to get nervous on this re-read because I couldn't remember that trajectory).

God gets a voice in this book; he speaks in parentheticals which are amusing and beautiful and full of mercy for his creation. I really like that authorial choice.

Having grown up in the community, I appreciate the depiction of Evangelical Christianity in all its tacky glory at the end of the novel. Considering the times we currently live in, that depiction seems eerily prescient.

I have some issues with the way that Lucy is presented: concerned about her weight and her virginity and etc. I also have some issues with the way race is handled at times. On the whole, I think this book does a good job of presenting multiple points of view about religion, however.

Definitely recommend this book, but it's a time investment at over 700 pages (with lots of eensy footnotes).



View all my reviews
lunabee34: (sga: lorne closeup by scifijunkie)
I'm about to have an evening to myself. Josh is taking Emma to Atlanta to watch Markiplier (I have no idea what a live show by a guy who does Let's Plays on Youtube would even look like, but fortunately, I don't have to go!), and I will have this whole evening to devote to conversation.

Ask me a question. Tell me something. *bats eyelashes*

I'll get back to you around 7:30 tonight.

Also, does anybody know how to get your own posts to show up in your friends list on DW? My LJ was set up that way, and I really liked it because I often used my latest post as the marker to start with when I began reading my flist. Any help would be appreciated.
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lunabee34: (Ouida by ponders_life)
The Fine and the Wicked: the Life and Times of OuidaThe Fine and the Wicked: the Life and Times of Ouida by Monica Stirling

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


Oh, man. Reading early literary criticism and biography is so frustrating because nobody cites sources in a useful way! Stirling is all, "And then Ouida said this," or "Then Henry James said this about Ouida," or "One time at band camp, Ouida . . ." without telling me where she gets any of her information. Sometimes I can go to the bibliography she has at the end and figure out that she's probably quoting from a certain text but sometimes not.

Reading Stirling is a wacky ride. I mean, she explicitly says that her mission is to defend Ouida as an important author and to reclaim her works as entertaining and worthy of reading, but she goes over the top in attributing emotions and motivations to Ouida for which she has zero evidence. She's constantly saying things like (paraphrasing here): Ouida never looked a gift horse in the mouth, and if she had, she would only have commented on the beauty of its teeth. Stirling's prose is ludicrous at times; she's so eager to defend Ouida's behavior that her defenses sometimes don't make logical sense. She also does this weird framing thing where she pits Ouida and Queen Victoria against each other throughout the biography, and it's extremely off-putting to read.

On the other hand, lots of great pictures of Ouida and the houses she lived in plus good biographical details and lots of info about the people with whom she socialized and corresponded.

Ouida just makes me so sad. She was so brilliant, and she was so admired, and she ended up alone and miserable and poor at the end of her life. She had loyal friends even up to her dying day, but she manufactured so much of her own unhappiness through her inability to save money and her anger at the social humiliations she sometimes suffered when she couldn't keep her mouth shut or reacted poorly to what she perceived as slights. I have so much sympathy for her and so much admiration for how much she was able to accomplish despite both external and internal forces that were set against her.

Note to self: I made a mistake in re-reading Ouida's biographies; published in the 1950s, Stirling's is the latest, and I really should have started with Elizabeth Lee's (the earliest at 1912) to better chart the way Ouida's story changes (or not) as time progresses. That's not something I took note of when I read these biographies fifteen years ago.



View all my reviews
lunabee34: (yuletide: kitty by chomiji)
Thank you so much for writing a story for me.

I am very easy to please, and I promise I will be excited to read whatever you come up with. I will be the happiest if you write the story that you most want to tell rather than worrying about my reaction. :)

My only DNW is child harm/death. Other than that, feel free to go to town. AUs, crossovers, pre-canon, post-canon, mpreg, major character death, angst and sadness, infidelity, slash, femslash, het, and gen--I'm okay with pretty much whatever story element you want to include outside of harm to children.

(I know that a significant portion of The Gentleman Bastards Sequence takes place when they are children; I would love a story about their childhood, and canon levels of violence, neglect, poverty are fine. I just don't want to read a story where Locke is gruesomely tortured as a kid, or Sabetha gets hung for thieving as a kid. I hope that makes sense.)

I did not request any characters for any of these fandoms because I love them all and will be happy reading about whatever characters you want to explore. I'm going to leave some story ideas for each fandom, but feel free to write about characters I don't mention or to use story ideas I don't mention. I will be very happy to get a story that explores any facet of these canons.

I've also got reviews of each of these books on my journal which you can find under the reading tag if you want to know more about what I think about these canons.

In alphabetical order, requests for Alchemy Wars, The Gentleman Bastards Sequence, Hellspark, and Imperial Radch )

Thanks again, Yuletide Author.

Lorraine
lunabee34: (reading by tabaqui)
And Always a Detective: Chapters on the History of Detective FictionAnd Always a Detective: Chapters on the History of Detective Fiction by R.F. Stewart

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


I must give this book a qualified review.

First the good: I don't care a whit about detective novels. I've never read a single Sherlock Holmes mystery, and I don't read modern thrillers or crime novels. I am completely disinterested in the subject matter, and yet Stewart's history of the genre thoroughly captivates me for two reasons. One, the history of detective fiction is indivisible from the history of the sensation novel, and like any proper Victorianist, I am mad about the sensation novel. I'd venture at least half of the book is about tracking trends in sensation novels and so is very relevant to my area of research. Two, Stewart has such a delightful authorial voice; he is funny, always making a joke or a clever allusion. He clearly loves detective fiction and is having fun writing about the genre which makes reading his work a pleasure for me.

Now for the bad: This was published in 1980, and the academy has come a long way, baby. The blatant sexism is over the top at times. Stewart takes potshots at Mary Elizabeth Braddon and Margaret Oliphant and Elaine Showalter (!), for example. He even derisively refers to his female colleagues as "academic ladies" at one point. *shudders* We've also come a long way in the past forty years in terms of the way we discuss literature that once fell (and sometimes still falls) outside the canon. Stewart is always eager to let the reader know that sensation literature is not good literature; it's second-rate, just like its writers (Braddon et al). I am so grateful that never once in my graduate work was I called on to justify why I think a critical discussion of one of the most widely read authors of the 19th century is important even though Ouida was "just" a sensation writer (okay, she wrote in more genres, but you get what I'm going for here).

So, if you're into detective fiction and can stomach a bit of sexism in your literary criticism, I think you'll have a mostly good time reading this book.



View all my reviews
lunabee34: (star trek: to boldy go by xtitania)
I really, really hate you.

Discovery is good. Really good. It looks fantastic. The credits are HBO-worthy (even if the score is a little lackluster).

The plot is interesting so far.

The characters, especially the lead, have drawn me in.

I WANT TO WATCH YOUR DAMN SHOW, AND I AM NOT PAYING FOR ANY MORE TV TO DO IT. SCREW YOU, SCREW YOU, CBS.

I am a die-hard Trek fan. I was listening to Star Trek in the womb. I will be happy to buy this series on DVD when it's done, but I'm not subscribing and paying for a new TV service. And if a hardcore Trekkie like me isn't willing to do so, I suspect this show is going to be hard up for a second season.

Which makes me sad. It's so good.

Die in a Fire,
Lorraine
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lunabee34: (Default)
1. Now that Remix authors have been revealed, I can tell you that I wrote:

Mermaid (The Prince Eric Remix); Star Trek: TNG; Picard/Q

I highly recommend reading the original story first (it's very short).

2. Downton Abbey watch continues (and is drawing to a close unfortunately).

spoilers )
lunabee34: (got: mayor littlefinger by paperdreams)
I love this show. As a nerd heretic, I love it better than the books, and I especially love this latest season (I think because the pacing has improved and because we've finally moved beyond what the books have to tell us and are getting new information, including the confirmation of long-held fan theories).

The finale did not disappoint.

SPOILERS )

Love to hear what you thought!
lunabee34: (Ouida by ponders_life)
The Forgotten Female Aesthetes: Literary Culture In Late Victorian EnglandThe Forgotten Female Aesthetes: Literary Culture In Late Victorian England by Talia Schaffer

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I love this book. Schaffer is such a good writer. I think it's so hard to write academic criticism well. The writer has to straddle the line between knowing her stuff/making a convincing argument and coming off like a pretentious twit who's just interested in proving how large her vocabulary is and how convoluted a sentence she can write. The longer I am in the academy, the less patience I have for dense, impenetrable academic writing. Life is too short to read someone masturbating (painfully, no less!) on the page. Schaffer's writing is not conversational, but it's not convoluted either; her writing is clear and convincing. I get a sense of who she is as a scholar and a thinker; her writing is formal, but she has not attempted to absent herself entirely from the process, a conceit I find tedious in a great deal of academic writing (as if our passions and interests and biases as scholars do not inform our work).

As a Ouida scholar, what mainly draws me to this book is Schaffer's argument that Ouida is a female Aesthete who can be credited with popularizing the witty, epigrammatic language that will later become characteristic of male Aesthetes like Wilde. She also positions Ouida and other female Aesthetes as a direct influence for Modernist writers; her comments about the way that Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own explicitly denies the lives and literary output of late Victorian women writers in order to create its argument that a female literary tradition doesn't exist are quite compelling (and even shocking) in this context. Identifying Ouida as an Aesthete also helps us to understand some of the seemingly inexplicable choices she made in her personal life (the way she dressed, her love of hothouse flowers, etc) as an attempt to live out the principles of Aestheticism.

I really enjoyed learning about female some writers I didn't know anything about (Who's going to immediately start reading Lucas Malet? This gal) and developing a greater understanding of Aestheticism itself. I was also fascinated to learn that Thomas Hardy plagiarized Jude the Obscure from a Lucas Malet novel and no one caught it at the time. Schaffer puts enough of their writing side by side that the plagiarism is undeniable.

Highly, highly recommend this as a very readable work that helps define Aestheticism, tells us about the lives and literary works of both male and female Aesthetes, and helps us understand the relationship of Modernism to the Aesthetic Movement.



View all my reviews
lunabee34: (heart by jjjean65)
1. We lost power for 7 hours on Monday; the temperature was great and we had awesome food lined up to eat. A tree fell down and didn't hurt any of us or the house. Other people in town just had power restored yesterday! Nothing like a little gratitude about the big stuff to get you through the car refusing to start and some necessary repairs. LOL Normally, I'd get all anxious and pissed off about that kind of thing. Not this week.

2. Tuesday, I picked up limbs for two hours solid and I have been paying for it ever since. Y'all know how physically active I am. I go to the gym every day. I'm biking like 13 miles at a time. I can run on the elliptical forever if the boredom doesn't kill me first. Picking up those limbs kicked my ass, and it surprised me. My hamstrings have been on fire ever since. I went to the gym on Wed and Thursday and they hurt so bad on Thursday night that I just didn't go on Friday. I might not go to today. It feels like such a little and stupid thing to be affecting me this way. I picked up limbs for an hour today, but I squatted to do it instead of bending at the waist like I did on Tuesday, and I think that's actually made my hamstrings feel somewhat better? IDK I'll let y'all know when I'm in agony again tonight and trying to sleep.

3. I got some new underwear! I had to go down another size, and the Bali underwear I've been buying doesn't come in a smaller size than 6/7 which is definitely WTF. But I got some Jockey ones and some Hanes ones at Target to try out.

4. Rising Strong by Brene Brown )
lunabee34: (thanks by ponders_life)
1. Thank you so much for your well wishes during the storm! We weathered it just fine, and I am so grateful when I think of how terrible it could have been. The power blinked off a few times in the morning before going off from 11:30-7:00. It was comfortable in the house; we had stuff to eat. The tree that fell didn't damage anything. No one got hurt. Looks like very few casualties from the storm over all are being reported in the continental US. We'll spend today picking up limbs and see if we can get a friend with a chain saw over here to help wrangle the tree.

2.A Perfect Heritage by Penny Vincenzi )

3. [personal profile] green_grrl wrote me a wonderful mpreg story for the Jack/Daniel ficathon! Everyone, go check out indistinguishable from magic.

Irma

11/9/17 11:38
lunabee34: (danger zombies by theidolhands)
The tree in the front yard just came down. It stretches all the way from the road to our house, the very top of the tree lightly brushing the house, the top-most branches resting in the gutter. Nothing is broken. Just a few more inches closer and it would have landed on Fiona's bed.

The storm's not even here yet.

Headdesk
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lunabee34: (ds9: alcohol by icons_of_isis)
1. I posted my Remix fic yesterday, and I am very happy with it!

2. Fiona had the rest of her dental work done, and she was a little trooper. Now hopefully we can keep her from developing any more problems.

3. cut for talk of weight and wardrobe )

4. I'm nervous about Irma. The public schools are closed Monday and Tuesday. The university is taking a more wait and see approach. We're closed for Monday but still reserving judgement for Tuesday and beyond. We bought a bunch of water and etc., and I think we'll probably be okay, but I'm still nervous.

5. I am reading A Perfect Heritage by Penny Vincenzi, and I am delighted with it. I was skeptical at first because it looks like a traditional romance novel, so I put it to the side for awhile and didn't start reading it. It's really not a romance novel at all, though. I'm about 150 pages into it and the only affair being discussed happened like forty years ago in the novel's time. It's mostly about the cosmetics industry and all that goes into running an enormous company; it's pretty fascinating. It's also about a clash of wills between the old matriarch of the company and the woman who's been brought in to save the outdated and failing company. The book is more than 500 pages long, so I can tell that the romance novel aspects will eventually come to the fore; I can already see two places where extramarital affairs are bound to happen LOL. But I'm loving the characters and the world. This was a good pick, [personal profile] executrix. Thanks for sending it to me!

6. I had a couple glasses of wine last night to celebrate a friend getting a job. Now that I don't drink very often, it's astonishing to me how potent just a small amount of alcohol can be. I'm going to be tired all day today as a result. Oh, well. Now for another couple months of sobriety. LOL
lunabee34: (Ouida by ponders_life)
Fallen AngelFallen Angel by Sally Mitchell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


The major theme of this work is the fallen woman, how she's represented in early Victorian fiction, and how that representation differs from the fallen woman in actuality. Naturally this entails a discussion of how the Victorians defined chastity and the consequences of that definition.

In addition, Mitchell focuses on reading habits of the time period. This is a good examination of the kinds of novels being written by and for women from the 1830s-1880s. Mitchell discusses sensation novels as well as the novels and stories being published in penny periodicals.

I read this book for her criticism of Ouida's novels, which is pretty spare. She only discusses Moths and Folle-Farine very briefly and Ouida's canon as a whole very generally, but her comments are important to note. Her research did point me to a couple primary sources, including contemporaneous reviews, of which I was unaware. I also appreciated the little bit of information Mitchell includes about Geraldine Jewsbury; she was a critic who reviewed several of Ouida's novels, but I didn't know anything about her personally.



View all my reviews
lunabee34: (star trek: to boldy go by xtitania)
HellsparkHellspark by Janet Kagan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


This was fantastic. I just plowed through it. When it ended, I was sad I didn't have more time to spend with these characters.

In Hellspark, a member of a survey team is killed under somewhat mysterious circumstances. The team is surveying a world that contains a possibly sapient life form, and the plot of the novel is largely concerned with figuring out how the surveyor died and whether or not the indigenous life of the planet is sapient.

The main character is a language expert (and so much wonderful, wonderful stuff about language and how it's different across cultures), and her AI Maggy shows growing signs of sapience herself as the novel progresses.

I love the world building, both the truly unique world they're surveying and the differing customs and mores of the characters.

This is a book all sci-fi lovers should read.



View all my reviews
lunabee34: (Ouida by ponders_life)
Nary a teary eye! And she did so well that they were able to do one whole side of her mouth; they were initially billing this as a four or five visit operation. It will only take two! Yay! Thanks for all the encouraging comments.

Reviews of Ouida the Phenomenon and Starbridge )


Spoiler alert: And when I say other scholars, I clearly mean me. Take that, Jane Jordan.
lunabee34: (shit could be worse by unsospiro)
Send some love into the void for me, my friends.

I'm extremely anxious about how she will handle the procedures.

*deep breaths*
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