Author: Octavia E. Butler
Genre: Science Fiction
Type: Stand Alone
Publisher: Beacon Press
Publishing Date: June 1979 (25th Anniversary release 2004)
Dana, a modern black woman, is celebrating her twenty-sixth birthday with her new husband when she is snatched abruptly from her home in California and transported to the antebellum South. Rufus, the white son of a plantation owner, is drowning, and Dana has been summoned to save him. Dana is drawn back repeatedly through time to the slave quarters, and each time the stay grows longer, more arduous, and more dangerous until it is uncertain whether or not Dana’s life will end, long before it has a chance to begin. Continue reading “Review: Kindred”
Author: Elliott James
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publishing Date: September 24th 2013
Page Count: 400 pages
Type: Pax Arcana Series (Book #1)
John Charming isn’t your average Prince…
He comes from a line of Charmings — an illustrious family of dragon slayers, witch-finders and killers dating back to before the fall of Rome. Trained by a modern-day version of the Knights Templar, monster hunters who have updated their methods from chainmail and crossbows to kevlar and shotguns, he was one of the best. That is — until he became the abomination the Knights were sworn to hunt.
That was a lifetime ago. Now, he tends bar under an assumed name in rural Virginia and leads a peaceful, quiet life. One that shouldn’t change just because a vampire and a blonde walked into his bar… Right? Continue reading “Review: Charming”
A small, wooden box rested in her hands. Her full-length gown swept the floor as she walked the mourner’s path. Posture rigid, head facing straight ahead, the woman’s small, brown thumb repeatedly passed over the detailed engravings on the box’s lid.
Without a glance up, she turned the corner and made her way down a set of stairs. A trendle of coarse curls wiggled its way loose from her bun and bounced with the beat of her steps. Tears shielded onlookers from the dull, lifeless look in her eyes. She was so close. Just a little bit farther.
Another hallway led her to a heavy door made of Redwood with gold inlaid. Only a master could have created such a masterpiece, but its beauty was lost on the woman. Her hands trembled slightly as she reached for the handle. With a quick jerk, the door swung free and she stepped inside. Continue reading “Short Story: The Path”
Title: I Wear The Black Hat: Grappling with Villains (Real and Imagined)
Author: Chuck Klosterman
Genre: Social Science
Publishing Date: July 9, 2013
Pages: 224 pgs
Chuck Klosterman has walked into the darkness. As a boy, he related to the cultural figures who represented goodness—but as an adult, he found himself unconsciously aligning with their enemies. This was not because he necessarily liked what they were doing; it was because they were doing it on purpose (and they were doing it better). They wanted to be evil. And what, exactly, was that supposed to mean? When we classify someone as a bad person, what are we really saying (and why are we so obsessed with saying it)? How does the culture of deliberate malevolence operate?
In I Wear the Black Hat, Klosterman questions the modern understanding of villainy. What was so Machiavellian about Machiavelli? Why don’t we see Bernhard Goetz the same way we see Batman? Who is more worthy of our vitriol—Bill Clinton or Don Henley? What was O. J. Simpson’s second-worst decision? And why is Klosterman still haunted by some kid he knew for one week in 1985?
Masterfully blending cultural analysis with self-interrogation and imaginative hypotheticals, I Wear the Black Hat delivers perceptive observations on the complexity of the antihero (seemingly the only kind of hero America still creates). I Wear the Black Hat is a rare example of serious criticism that’s instantly accessible and really, really funny. Klosterman continues to be the only writer doing whatever it is he’s doing. Continue reading “Review: I Wear The Black Hat”