Tag: YA

Sleeping Beauty and the Beast

Since so many of the current Romantasy crop of novels involves variations or inspirations from the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, here’s another mashup… in AI this time. The originals are here and here.

American Born Chinese [Review]

American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang First Second Books, 2006 American Born Chinese is a graphic novel about the experience of Asian Americans trying to come to terms with their heritage in mainstream American society. It was published in 2006, so it’s a few years short of its much-deserved twentieth anniversary –- it’s still …

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A Tale of Two Castles [Review]

A Tale of Two Castles by Gail Carson Levine Harper Collins, 2011 The past year has seen a resurgence in cozy fantasy. In this subgenre the characters are genial, the stakes low. It’s slice-of-life, not slice-of-death, and centers on community and friendship. It’s been led by the runaway success of the self-published Legends & Lattes …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 11/16/22: Let’s Talk About -ling

A few months ago, back in August 2022, the ARCs (advanced reader’s copies) of a YA fantasy novel, Lightlark, were released to selected readers and reviewers to generate some buzz. The author, Alex Aster, had generated plenty already. Already active on BookTok — the TikTok community centered around reading and authors — she’d been talking …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 10/26/22: Hogwarts Houses

Now that Halloween is coming around, let’s talk about a perennial costume: Harry Potter. Either Harry himself, in a black robe (a polyester one used for graduations is available at most thrift stores), scarf, round eyeglasses, and eye-penciled scarf, or one of the other characters such as Snape, Hermione, or a Death Eater. All have …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 5/25/22: Let’s Talk About Dumbledore

  As I’m sure every fantasy fan already knows, Dumbledore (full name Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore) is the mysterious but kindly Headmaster of Hogwarts, the magical boarding school Harry Potter attends. In the movie series, he’s depicted in full-on Gandalf mode, with hippy-style long gray hair and a like beard he keeps tied in …

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The Book of Three [Reading Challenge 2022]

The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander Square Fish, 2006 (Originally published by Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1964 ) [ Challenge # 23: Read the first book of a series. ] The Chronicles of Prydain is a much-loved children’s book series originally published in the 1960s. It consists of five books that follow the adventures …

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The Lady of the Green Kirtle (Part II)

Green Kirtle = green scales = reptile = poison = poisonous intent, poisonous sexuality, poisonous philosophy. The Green Witch is all about poison. Green-yellow is the color of pustulence, of unhealthy phlegm, pus, the eruptions of an infected wound; it’s the color of insects, snakes, lizards, certain larvae, caterpillars, and amphibians, and centipedes. Creepy-crawlies that …

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All Things Charn (Part III)

Previous parts of this essay: Part I Part II Since it’s pretty certain that Charn had biblical origins, can we say the same of Jadis? Is she the same as the infamous Whore of Babylon, or is she something more? One thing Jadis is not, is European. In her own element she wore no tight …

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Tash the Inexorable

Tash is the antithesis of Aslan the lion. In The Last Battle he’s the principal god of Calormen,  a horrid epitome of an ancient Middle Eastern deity who receives sacrificial victims in bizarre and novel ways, like being tied up inside a brass bull which is heated by a wood-burning fire from below. He’s cut …

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