Want to turn your paperback into a hot pink (or red, or blue, or green) hardcover? Check out Hardbacker, a product with a somewhat buggy website, and an unintentionally hilarious name.
[Thanks to Linda for the link.]
Altered romance novels with whole new sparkly buttsecks meanings, with that piquant dash of sardonic artistry, for your eyes only at Cliterature.
[Thanks to P.N. Elrodfor the link.]
Marjorie Liu gets a nod and a merry tribute this week from Bill Willingham, author of the Fables comic series. Willingham writes:
Confession time: I doubt I would ever have picked up one of Marjorie’s books, had I not met her in person. The reason is they’re categorized as Romances, which is where they are shelved in bookstores. Though I have no justification for avoiding it, the romance section is an area in bookstores I seldom wander into. Her novels also have traditional-looking romance book covers, which are occasionally a bit off-putting to us mighty manly men.
Then again, who knows? I don’t carry many biases where good storytelling is concerned. I’m willing to find it anywhere, as too many of my friends will attest, when I try to drag them to wonderful movies that they aren’t eager to go to, simply because they fall under the chick-flick rubric. So, in any case, I’m glad I did meet Marjorie Liu in person, because it would have been a shame to miss out on the work of an author this talented due to whatever degree of cultural prejudices I might still possess. I trust you who read this won’t make the same mistake.
[Thanks to Gail Dayton for the linkage.]
Aside from the doubting of Darcy and Elizabeth’s happy ending (and the misspelling of Sir Quiet of Pemberley name, what’s UP with that?!) there is some bad news in the Guardian’s book blog. If you’ve been hoping for the opportunity to have your post-mortem self scattered as ashes in Jane Austen’s garden, hope no more:
Louise West, the collections manager of Jane Austen’s House Museum, wrote: “While we understand many admirers of Jane Austen would love to have ashes laid here, it is something we do not allow. It is distressing for visitors to see mounds of human ash, particularly so for our gardener. Also, it is of no benefit to the garden!”
If there is one thing I do know about the British, it is that one ought not fuck with their knowledge of gardening. If the roses aren’t meant to be made out of people, then forget your ash-scattering plans, folks.
However, while I’m on this entry, this caught my eye:
…the cult of Austen has reached ridiculous proportions. In a post-feminist world that should know better, she seems to be adored as the comforting provider of romantic, happy-endings nonsense instead of the sharp and acerbic social satirist she deserves to be seen as.
It’s the holiday season, a time when I tend to diverge from my normally mellow self and get a good bit more cranky (Can we people STOP with the HOLIDAY shoving down people’s THROATS and with the CHRISTMAS music it is 6am and I just WANT to BUY DIAPERS, children’s Motrin and some theraputic CHOCOLATE for the LOVE of GOD – ahem. Sorry). So this totally rubbed me the wrong way with far more force than normal, like a cat being rubbed tail to shoulders with a really firm brush. Cult of Austen? What, that’s more of a problem than the Cult of Britney Spears or the Cult of Angelina Jolie Is She Pregnant Again or the Cult of People who Like to Be Online A Lot?
So the fuck what if she’s adored as the “comforting provider of romantic happy endings.” She’s not appreciated enough for her social satire and wit? You’re not happy because people don’t like her for the same reasons you do? Oh, bite me. The only thing more annoying than the Cult of Anything is self-righteous snotbags telling people they ought to know better than to like Something Awesome But, Oh Noes, For The Wrong Reasons. It’s a straight shot to Self-Important Asshat Land with an attitude like that, particularly since the foundation of your argument suffers from disintegration because you can’t spell “Darcy” correctly.
[Thanks to Rebecca for the link.]