When She Woke

When She Woke

In When She Woke, an antibiotic-resistant STD that gives men no symptoms but leaves women infertile and a nuclear terrorist attack on Los Angeles in near-future America have unleashed a social response so conservative that the United States has become a theocratic caricature of itself. Steep economic decline coupled with isolated technological advances and near-martial […]

Prairie Silence; Or: On Being An Ex-Pat In Your Own Home Town

Prairie Silence; Or: On Being An Ex-Pat In Your Own Home Town

Melanie Hoffert grew up on the North Dakota prairie. Like most rural kids, she evacuated to a city the first chance she got, moving by degrees until she ended up in Minneapolis-St.Paul, where I met her. We were in different stages in our lives then. I, still in the aggressive autonomy¬†of early adulthood, felt no […]

The Mothers; Or: Ginger, Get The Popcorn!

The Mothers; Or: Ginger, Get The Popcorn!

Sometimes, a good book slow rolls you. You begin reading, and you don’t even really notice that you’re that interested until you suddenly realize you’re 215 pages in, and you think, “Huh. This is pretty good.” By the time you get to the end, you’re utterly in love, but you can’t remember where exactly it […]

The Peculiar Case of the Electric Constable: A True Tale of Passion, Poison, and Pursuit

Reason number 187 why we made the right choice on Grandma’s assisted living community is the library.¬†Every time I’m there, I spot a handful of titles intriguing enough for me to download samples onto my Kindle right then and there. The latest is a strange, true story I probably never would have picked up, if […]

Maude; Or, Superwoman In Disguise

I downloaded Maude, by Donna Mabry, on my Kindle about two years ago because it was free at the time. There was a sale, or something. And I thought, “Why not?” I was never overly interested, and it just sat there for ages. I finally got to it because I’ve read though everything else I […]

On The Docket: My Complete And Total Attention

While I usually have somewhere in the neighborhood of half a dozen books going at once, the book I’m reading now has so captured my attention that I cannot spare one brain cell for anything else. Who Fears Death, by Nnedi Okorafor: I came to this book by googling “women writers of color,” and coming […]

They Burned Witches in Salem Because Henry VIII REALLY Wanted to Fuck Anne Boleyn

I came up in the New History school of thought. More than one of my professors told me more than once, “I don’t care if you don’t know who was king of what when; that’s what Google is for.” (Except one prof – I was expected to know the date of the Norman invasion for […]

Your Monday Morning GIF Parade: Bah Humbug Edition

It’s almost Christmas! I’m sort of Grinchy about Christmas. I just don’t get into it. I don’t do the whole baby Jesus thing, so all that reason-for-the-season stuff is more irritating than inspiring. And since I’m not a kid myself, and don’t have kids, the whole Santa-and-presents thing just feels like a greedy grab for […]

UPDATED: Thoughts on Suki Kim and North Korea

First things first; I enjoyed Suki Kim’s memoir about her months teaching in North Korea, and would freely recommend the book to anyone interested in journalism, closed societies, East Asia, the Korean War, memoirs, missionaries, or the social sciences. Kim’s memoir is remarkable in large part because of the tone in which she writes. It […]

Additional Thoughts on The Butterfly Mosque

I took my sweet time reading The Butterfly Mosque, but finally finished a day or two ago. I’m usually a quick reader, but I took my time with Wilson’s book because I felt compelled to. The force of Wilson’s desire to facilitate a genuine understanding between impossibly different people and places in this world was […]