Plotting by J.L. Bell
It’s so beautiful.
THIS IS MAGNIFICENT MY GODS
Stop what you’re doing and look at these books. This is what feminist wish-fulfillment disguised as young adult urban fantasy looks like.
Don’t be put off by the foreign sounding titles, because these books will all be published in English (The Circle and Fire already are & the final installment will be). Unfortunately the English covers are so boring I doubt even the feminist wish-fulfillment comment is enough to rouse your attention so I had to post these instead.
But even if you look up the English books don’t let the covers lie to you, because this is some of the best shit I’ve read in…a great big while. The reason why is because for once I was given fiction that didn’t make me feel like I was settling. These books told a story that didn’t make me have to reinterpret, disguise or gloss over any sentence or occurrence in order to feel like I owned it. It’s the kind of story that’s told for you and me and everyone we know.
From a meta perspective it’s interconnectivity explained through easily accessible adventures with magic. Kinda like how Dolly Parton makes you understand gender performance in a more tangible way than Judith Butler does. And somehow I’ve got a feeling it’s only in that mix of what we presume to be high and low that we get the whole picture.
Ugh, I feel like I’m going about this in all the wrong ways and that I can’t make myself understood. I feel like I’m just sat here on my ass mumbling “den är så jävla fin” in my strange and guttural mother tongue. I just don’t know where to start and words seem so pointless because I’d have to spend such enormous amounts of them to get close to even describing why this is so right. But I’ll try harder to summarise, recommend and hopefully end up persuading you to read it. Because you deserve to read it.
In short this is a trilogy that rides the seam between fantasy and urban fantasy, mixes it with a rural small-town realism and unapologetic political idealism, and presents it as highly addictive, entirely amusing and thoroughly enjoyable young adult fiction.
It’s a series that believes in solidarity and democracy. It worships and welcomes the beautiful chaos that diversity can lead to. At the same time it’s fantastical, magic gets to shimmer and shine as a supporting character. It’s adventure like the kinds you dreamt of as a kid, but it’s also a hyper-realistic coming of age narrative with multiple angles. It swings from describing how invisibility and mind control works to detailing the pure humanity of dealing with death and loss. It’s laughs and recognition and pain and hope. A damn beautiful thing to behold.
This is also the story about a group of young women (of different ethnicities, classes and sexualities) who empower each other through mutual respect and support. They tangle with oppression in all its forms, from neglect to bullying to patriarchy. They do all of this in a way that comments on what we have, but offers you hope. Because the tools they use to fight these battles do not fall under the supernatural elements of this story. Their power lies in their selves and their realisation of the interconnection to each other. Basically it’s about respect and empathy. It’s the kind of storytelling that cracks your cynical veneer and exposes the idealism you thought you’d lost long ago.
And I’m spoiling slightly by revealing this trilogy describes the evolution of two romances in a way that’s far beyond any young adult and most adult fiction I’ve read. There are no triangles, no cheating, no rushing, no monkey wrenches throw for the sake of throwing. Instead the authors chronicle the steady ways love grow between two people and how their inside reflects the ways they deal with this. To make matters even better, one of these stories is about taboo love and the other is a queer one. And it fucking matters that in a series of books which are a kind of feminist wish-fulfillment that the queer love isn’t written in italics, but is simply told as a three dimensional love story (maybe you could even say it’s the love story).
But you should also be warned, because this series contains a lot of triggers. They deal with mental illness, suicide, death, bullying, drug use and rape culture. However it is the way that they acknowledge and then deal with these themes that sets them apart from the norm. The authors paint a picture containing a lot of black, but they make sure their palette is never monochrome. And at the end of the day this is all about feminist values solidifying into a fictional form that is dynamic enough to contain both happiness and sadness.
I’ll stop now, but I’ll finish by saying that never once while reading was I disappointed. When was the last time you could say that about a book about young women?
do you ever think about how weird reading is
our eyes are able to scan these different symbols and construct the scenarios and concepts they describe in our mind
and these concepts have the power to twist our emotions and make us cry and laugh and wow reading is weird
i think it’s one of the most beautiful things in the world
so I said, "I’m actually a boy, Miss."
Then one of my classmates slams his hands on the desks and shouts, "YOU’RE NO BOY!"
I turned around to him.
he said, “YOU’RE A MAN.”
I turned back around sheepishly smiling while all my male classmates cheered and shouted, my teacher simply smiled, apologized, and the lesson continued.
I’m thankful for that moment in my life, it gives me hope for the future.
That more trans people will be supported, and visible.
Okay so I don’t read fanfics very often but after this beauty
I decided to check out pleasedonttalktome's other fics and if you haven't read them already
you should drop whatever you’re doing
and head over there right away
because these fics are gold
and I’m so confused
WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON
Listen to the trees as they sway in the wind.
Their leaves are telling secrets.
Their bark sings songs of olden days as it grows around the trunks. And their roots give names to all things.
Their language has been lost,
but not the gestures.
so you've got a theme and a plot. you know that the next step is building the characters that will fuel your roleplay. characters make the setting and situations come alive. without characters there would be no roleplay, simple as. but writing them isn't as easy as slapping down a personality under a couple of nicely edited photos. you've got to captivate. here i've provided several links to resources that will help in this process.
a first name generator. (make sure to select english in the categories.)
a means of relaxation. (put it on over your favorite writing songs for best results.)
Or, you know, marry me. I’m not picky.
Drew this in feb-12 after finding a crazy wig on sale that I realized was too crazy even for Heap hair. Also I have a huge weak spot for big families and men with long hair, and truth be told I had a very light character-crush on Silas in my early teens. No shame.
What gave you the idea there was only one lesson to learn?