Friday, September 9, 2011

Book Thoughts: Library trip, graphic novels, #speakgeek

I ended up taking the whole summer off from blogging, for all intents and purposes. Didn't really mean to, that's just kind of how it happened. Back in June...I don't even really remember what I was reading, but I was getting burned out because so much of it felt kind of repetitive and derivative that I didn't want to write about any of it because almost every post would have been "blah blah, this sucks, blah blah, copy-cat."

Yeah, I wasn't a happy camper!

I also joined Google Plus and have gotten really involved in a couple of "communities" on there - RPG players are huge on there, and then there was the big controversy over G+'s name policy (they require you to use your "common name"). I happen to be on there using my legal name, because I actually want to leave some digital footprints behind (the same reason I blog here under my legal name), but I totally understand why one would value a pseudonym (since I used a few for much longer than I've been using my RL name online).

For the past two weeks I've been posting my library hauls on G+, and I thought pasting in one of those would be a good way for me to get back into the blogging habit!

Picked up this week:
Don't Stop Now - Julie Halpern
She Loves You, She Loves You Not - Julie Anne Peters
The Floating Islands - Rachel Neumeier
Wrapped - Jennifer Bradbury
Super Mario: How Nintendo Conquered America - Jeff Ryan

Still have from last week, haven't started:
This Dark Endeavor

Still have from two weeks ago, haven't finished
Wild Unrest: Charlotte Perkins Gilman and the Making of "The Yellow Wallpaper"

Read This Week:
Dreams of Significant Girls - Cristina Garcia (really wanted to like, but it fell short)
Ultimate Iron Man graphic novel - Orson Scott Card
Will Super Villains be on the Final? - Naomi Novik (another graphic novel)

And the two graphic novel reads inspired the follow rant/book thoughts on graphic novels and me:

Conclusion this week: I can't do graphic novel series. Hate, hate, hate how essentially it's just a snippet of a story. Iron Man came closer to telling a full story than Super Villains, but it's still clearly just a hook to get you to come back again next month.

I hate novels that end on total cliffhanger endings. The books that best start a trilogy are the ones that finish one story, but leave one or two tantalizing hooks for the next one. Katniss survives the Arena - but there's still the danger of President Snow lurking back in her civilian life. Tally redeems herself for leading to the destruction of the Smoke - in part by promising the hook for the second book "Make Me Pretty." If you never go to book two in these trilogies, you still had an entire story. You probably want to know what happens next, but this particular story had a clear beginning, middle and end. Comic books and series like Will Super Villains be on the Final just don't have that completeness for me, so I end up feeling frustrated that there's so much missing, rather than enjoying what I did just read.

And finally, next week is going to be an awesome event that is going to result in you guys seeing a lot more of me: Speak Out With Your Geek Out. It's going to be a great week of geek-positivity. From 9/12 to 9/16, we're asking geeks of all stripes to blog/tweet/write/speak about what they're passionate about. This isn't just for "traditional" geeks - the Magic players, RPG nerds and video game obsessives - but for anyone who's truly passionate about...something. One of my topics here next week will definitely be about YA lit in general, and possibly a few posts about why I love specific genres. I also want to plug my call for audioclips to contribute to next week's edition of my podcast. If you want to rave about YA lit in general, a genre or specific title you totally geek out over, or really any topic at all in audio form, follow these instructions on how to be included in our special episode! And Twitter users, there is (of course) an official hashtag - #speakgeek.

Looking forward to getting back in the saddle next week - thanks for bearing with me everyone!
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