eruthros: photo of a tree on a misty, grey day with the text "yuletide" (yuletide - grey tree)
[personal profile] eruthros
Man, I have totally lost my System from previous years. These are still from all over the place! I haven't even finished reading in some of these categories! Please send help, or possibly a spreadsheet.

Recs in Babylon 5, the Cthulhu Mythos, Dorothy Sayers - Lord Peter Wimsey series, Fairy Tales - The Ugly Duckling, Jonathon Stroud - The Bartimaeus Trilogy, Ursula K Le Guin - Earthsea series, Italo Calvino - If on a winter's night a traveler, Lois McMaster Bujold - Chalionverse, and Terry Pratchett - Discworld:

Babylon 5

The Stars Her Destination, all about Catherine Sakai. Listen, I didn't know that I wanted a story about Catherine Sakai, about her childhood and her time in Japan and her time on the in the stars and the time she spends with Ivanova when she comes back. But I totally did, I wanted this story, oh my god I wanted this story. This is sort of like a Bechdel fix-it for Sakai and Ivanova, because Jeff Sinclair doesn't matter anymore, and they don't have to talk about a wedding, they have their own futures in the stars. And it's a fixit for Catherine all on her own; this Catherine talks about Japan, about her ancestor Yamazaki Naoko who went to space. I am just so full of heart-heart-heart for this right now. (And for the Dark Agenda challenge, srsly.)

NB: This ignores book canon; I'm fine with that, but if you're really attached to To Dream in the City of Sorrows, read this as an AU.

Cthulhu Mythos

The True Death of Frank Gardiner, an excellent story that builds on the Lovecraft mythos with intriguing OCs and a perfect, perfect setting -- San Francisco, April 18th, 1906.

Dorothy Sayers - Lord Peter Wimsey series

All Our Scattered Leaves which, oh my god. It's a beautiful epistolary piece featuring basically everyone in this circle around Peter, affected by his return and his shell-shock. And there's just perfect Duchess of Denver and Miss Climpson voices, which must be really hard styles to match. <3s

Fairy Tales - The Ugly Duckling

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Duckling. Oh man, this is really just great. It's takes the moral of the Ugly Duckling story -- that's the duckling is beautiful to his own kind -- and says, what the fuck? No really, what the fuck? It's really really nicely done, sharp-edged and beautiful, full of people with good intentions who do harm. And the main character's just brilliantly written. (Also for the Dark Agenda challenge.)

Jonathon Stroud - The Bartimaeus Trilogy

As Far As Adventures Go, It Was Pretty Okay. The mystery author here has done a perfect Bartimaeus voice, completely with appropriate footnotes. This is sort of the first day of Bartimaeus and Ptolemy's magician/demon relationship, and they're building their banter and their understanding of each other, and it's totes fun :)

Ursula K Le Guin - Earthsea

Other Dances, all about Tenar and Tehanu and women choosing their own fates in the books.

Unbinding, a short but interesting piece about the similarities between Tenar and Tehanu.

And Chasing Shadows, in which Ged and Vetch are friends, and devoted to each other.

Italo Calvino - If on a winter's night a traveler

Five stories the Reader never began. So, this was recced by about a million people a week ago, but I didn't read it: it was in a tab almost all the way to the left, where closing tabs would never deposit me, and anyway the beginning of the story was good enough that I kept waiting until I felt up for it. (I note that this is not one of the possibilities mentioned in the story, but there you go.) I've never read If on a winter's night a traveler, but [personal profile] thingswithwings read out the first page when I said so in response to [personal profile] livrelibre's request, so all I can say is that the beginning of this sounds a lot like the first paragraphs of that.

Regardless, this is brilliantly meta. It's a story about yuletide and about fandom and the history of fandom, and it's all just completely perfect: the wayback machine! #yuletide! AWESOME.

Lois McMaster Bujold - Chalionverse

Life, stripped of all luxuries. AWESOME. It made me go "oh!" a lot, because this is Caz and his men during the siege of Gotorget, and it's beautiful and grim and a perfect backstory. It make dy Jironal's betrayal count more, mean something worse, than it did in the book.

Terry Pratchett - Discworld

Like Clockwork. This is a really neat little day-in-the-life of Vetinari, from his POV. It says interesting things about Vetinari's intentional isolation, his relationship with Drumknott, and his relationship with the city and with knowledge. Very neat.

A Place Called Home. Also Drumknott focused, this is the story of Drumknott visiting his family, and of Drumknott making a bigger family to include Vetinari. Vetinari is so good at reading Drumknott here, and in doing something about what he sees, that it conveys a lot of respect in a tiny little space.

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eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
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