Dec 08 2013

Dark Currents

author: 
Carey, Jacqueline

Carey's new paranormal series has a wide variety of magical creatures, including mermaids, norns (?) and your run-of-the-mill vampires and werewolves. The protagonist is a halfie, herself, a hell-spawn doing her best to not invoke her birthright and thereby destroying the world. She's also a file clerk at the local PD, doing supernatural detective work on the QT.

reviewdate: 
Dec 6 2013
isn: 
978-0-451-46478-1
Dec 01 2013

Unbearable Lightness: a Story of Loss and Gain

author: 
de Rossi, Portia

If you want to know what it's like inside an eating disorder, this is your chance. It's hardcore, but reading it, you understand how it happens. At least I could see it.

De Rossi (not remotely her real/given name) is a serious overachiever from childhood, the kind of kid who goes undefeated in classroom times tables challenges for years because she's drilled them so hard, even though she's not especially adept at math.

Quotations: 

Also, I was scared of lesbians. In fact, I would cross the street if I saw one coming toward me. One time I didn't cross the street and I ended up sleeping with a lesbian because I felt sorry for her.

reviewdate: 
Nov 30 2013
isn: 
978-1-4391-7778-5
Dec 01 2013

If You Could Be Mine

author: 
Farizan, Sara

Did you know it's easier to be transsexual in Iran than homosexual? According to the novel and Wikipedia, the only country in the world that does more sex reassigngment surgeries than Iran is Thailand, and many of the surgeries are subsidized by the government. Being born the wrong gender is an ailment, being queer is a sinful aberration. So that's what our heroine Sahar is dealing with as her best friend, who she has wanted to marry since the girls were six years old, gets engaged to a dude.

reviewdate: 
Nov 28 2013
isn: 
978-1-61620-251-4
Dec 01 2013

Night's Edge: Dancers in the Dark, Her Best Enemy, Someone Else's Shadow

author: 
Harris, Charlaine
Shayne, Maggie
Hambly, Barbara

I plugged the word "dance" into a search of ebooks available for checkout from NYPL, and this was the first result. Charlaine Harris's story, about a survivor of a brutal sexual assault trying to distance herself from her past is readable (as in fuckable). It's set in the same universe, or at least with the same rules about vampires as the Sookie Stackhouse novels. The protagonist is similar to Sookie, personality-wise, but doesn't have her mind-reading ability. Her vampire dance partner is a still-waters-run-deep Irishman.

Quotations: 

Special thanks got to Doris Ann Norris, reference librarian to the stars, who can look up the inner dimensions of a sarcophagus faster than I can whistle "Dixie." (Charlaine Harris)

reviewdate: 
Nov 27 2013
isn: 
978-1-4603-0265-1
Dec 01 2013

Not My Small Diary #17

author: 
Green, Delaine Derry

Cartoonists who are not Delaine depict their miserable high school years that were miserable. There's angst about popularity, getting beaten up, horrible teachers, bad hair, and more than I expected about boys' libidos. I mean, as a woman, I understand from pop culture that adolescent boys are sex-obsessed, but I didn't fully grasp that the arty nerdy guys are just as strung out as meathead future frat boys.

reviewdate: 
Nov 25 2013
Nov 24 2013

Attitude!: Eight Young Dancers Come of Age at The Ailey School

author: 
Fishman, Katharine Davis

Fishman follows eight high school dancers studying at The Ailey School, trying to discern what exactly talent is and what makes it go. She doesn't separately profile each student. Instead it's one narrative with themes (like eating disorders and weight, sexuality, race and friendship) explored by chapter. Although you can tell Fishman cares about her subjects, she manages not to get too sucked in. I like her researched but relatively casual approach.

reviewdate: 
Nov 24 2013
isn: 
1-58542-355-6
Nov 24 2013

My Life as a Silent Movie

author: 
Kercheval, Jesse Lee

A three-years-orphaned college professor loses her husband and daughter in a car accident, finds out she was adopted and goes off to find her roots. I don't want to give anything away, but I should warn you, everything in this novel takes forever. And if you're sensitive to misspellings and typos, stop being petty, but in case you can't, brace yourself. (What's up with the lax proofreading Indiana University Press?)

reviewdate: 
Nov 18 2013
isn: 
978-0-253-01024-7
Nov 17 2013

Bats or Swallows

author: 
Vlassopoulos, Teri

Canadian zine maker Teri's short stories are so good, and I don't even like short stories. (I can call her Teri because we're social media friends, and I've read most of her zines.) Her protagonists come from a variety of backgrounds. Most are young, but there's also a mother (of a stripper in his 20s), and one of them is male. I found all of narrators relatable and real.

reviewdate: 
Nov 15 2013
isn: 
978-1-926743-07-3