family-tragedy

Today, a group of Muslims leaving the mosque from taraweeh prayers on this holy and beautiful month of Ramadan were hit by a vehicle by a white TERRORIST. He isn’t mentally ill, he chose to run into innocent people but the media will never let you know. Pray for the Muslim families and the tragedies of minorities that become silenced by the media. Praying for these families

Edit: the media now is covering it, the British media is doing a much better job this time around at clarifying it’s an act of terrorism. The US news isn’t doing that well at highlighting all the points. Also understand that condemning him is the first step in a long battle to retain justice for those Muslims that were injured and the 1 that was killed.

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new DanAndPhilGAMES video! starting the year with a bang and several splats: we play HAPPY WHEELS 💥🚴🏻

leupagus  asked:

PROMPT: Poe trying to explain exactly how many bullets he would take for Leia to someone

The blow’s not sharp enough to knock Poe back—not really—but it does anyway. Or maybe he just…he lets it. Lets himself stumble back, reeling, barely catching himself on the edge of the table. For a moment that’s all he can think about: the grain of the wood under his palms, the pool of wetness from the sweating glasses. They’d been eating, sharing a meal just a few moments ago. He’d been laughing.

When Poe turns back, his father’s breathing hard, chest rising and falling like bellows, or maybe some dying animal. His eyes are wet. 

“Don’t do this,” Kes says. “Don’t…not this. Not….”

The shame curdles in Poe’s stomach. The last time papa sounded like that, Poe had just come back from his first term at the Academy, and he’d made a nasty comment about.Ana Lucia, her thick Alderaanian accent—he couldn’t remember the comment, just the shame on his father’s face, how cheap and small he’d felt afterwards. 

He swallows. “You don’t understand—”

“You can go back,” Kes says almost feverishly. “You can. The New Republic—you’re so close to earning your rank pin, you could go back—”

“I can’t,” Poe murmurs. He feels dizzy, and he doesn’t think it’s the beer, or how hot his cheek is burning. “I can’t, I…the General asked me.”

Kes looks at him. “No. No, Poe, no that’s not…”

But it is. When Poe shuts his eyes, he can still see her standing there in the hall, smiling a crescent-moon smile and her dark eyes fixed on him. She’d gotten softer, since Mama’s funeral—just around the middle, at her jaw; her mouth marked with lines mama would never have—and Poe had been breathless just looking at her. It was like stumbling into a nebula, all cold-burning and sheer, impossible glory, vaster than you could imagine. Leia Organa, Princess of Alderaan. Survivor of Worlds.

She’d taken him by the wrist, and she’d smiled, and she’d said, you look just like your mother, Dameron.

(He’d appreciated, in a distant sort of way, the dance that came after—she took him out to dinner, and flattered him, and spun grand and glittering ideologies to lure him in, but the sad truth was she’d had him before then. She’d had him in the corridor on Chandrila, soft at the waist and durasteel in her hair, and sharp as a vibroblade.

He’d played Lost Princess of Alderaan too often, not to be won over by the princess in white, telling him he was her only hope.)

“I’m sorry,” Poe says to his father. “Really. I am, I’m…”

“She’ll kill you,” Kes says, and there’s an awful surety to the way he says it. “She’ll be the death of you, just like—”

“I know,” Poe says quickly, and Kes flinches like Poe’s struck him in return. (He’s old, and soft too—Poe’s never seen him look so tired, hunched over with the weight of his son going off to die in a war he tried so hard to end.) “But I have to, papa. I have to…she’s…she needs me. It’s worth it. To defend the galaxy, to save us.”

He sounds like he’s pleading. He hates it.

“No. She doesn’t need you, she just needs—someone. Anyone. A body, something to hurl at the—at the void—”

“That’s okay!” Poe says. His voice breaks on it, and he has to tell himself to calm down, to breathe. Just breathe. “I know it’s not…it’s not me, but it’s okay. She needs someone, and I can be someone. I can…”

He almost says, die for her, but he catches himself. He knows it’s messed up—at some point, it all got tangled in his head, flying and falling and the Light and Leia Organa, who is and isn’t the whole galaxy. There’s a part of him that knows how hopeless it all is, the mess of longing and loyalty; there’s another part of him that doesn’t care. There’s a spark in him that—

(His mother died when she was young, a patchwork of blaster scars and eyes turned up to the stars. He wants her to be proud of him. He wants General Organa to be proud of him. He wants to be proud of himself. These are not all distinct longings.)

“I just wanted to tell you,” Poe says carefully, not quite meeting his father’s eyes. “I wanted you to—know, where I was. So if you heard any stories…”

He hears his father’s heavy boots shuffle across the floor, and Poe braces himself. When the touch comes, it’s cool, impossibly gentle. His father’s hand is rough and calloused and huge as the sky. 

He exhales, shuddering.

“Don’t come back,” Kes says, and Poe gulps. He refuses to cry, even when his father presses his forehead to his. “I mean it. Don’t…don’t come back.”

“Okay,” Poe says. His voice is thin, shaky. He breathes, forces himself to pull away. “Okay.”

He walks away, out of the kitchen and out of the house and out of the yard and into the field where the s’add is high and green. He climbs up into his x-wing; initiates takeoff protocol. He does not look back. Not even once.

BTS: Spring Day Stage Analysis

The world has finally seen the Spring Day stage. And wooh! That was emotional! (You’re heartless if you didn’t shed a tear)

When they talked about Youth Ending… They weren’t fucking kidding.

Bangtan may have talked about their advocacy against discrimination and injustice for the MV (if you want to see the symbolisms check my theory here: BTS You Never Walk Alone - Spring Day MV Theory: The Untold Story) but this song, this choreography… was all dedicated to the victims and families of the Sewol Tragedy which happened on the spring day of April 16, 2014. The Sewol Ferry tragedy ended the youth of almost 300 students from Danwon High School that day and this song and stage hopes to give comfort to the victims and their families that they are not alone.

Jimin representing those whose youth ended that day.

Boat formation, Jimin slowly going down

Jimin being taken by the waves, JHope too late to save him

Jin, the “comfort-giver”.

He represents those who stand strong with the plight of those who went through the injustice in hopes of giving peace to them and those whose lives were lost in the tragedy.

Being a strong shoulder for Kookie

Continuing the fight for Tae who was singing about his best friend

Tae trying to catch and hold on to the hope

Finally giving peace to the lost, Jimin

When us ARMYs say that Bangtan is relevant, we don’t only mean that they are breaking new ground in the industry they are in. Their songs in and of itself are now even more relevant than some on-lookers may perceive.

Bangtan will let everyone remember that the fight is not over…

You who are still fighting, lost, and in mourning… You will never walk alone.

ZACK SNYDER STEPS DOWN FROM ‘JUSTICE LEAGUE’ FOLLOWING FAMILY TRAGEDY!

Zack Snyder has announced that he will step down as director of the ‘Justice League’ movie to be with his family after his 20 year old daughter committed suicide. Joss Whedon has already been announced to step in and finish the movie in Zack’s absence. Snyder had already finished filming and a lot of post production work so the final product will still very much be a Zack Snyder movie. Our thoughts are with his family. 

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@directedbyzacksnyder first of all I would like to thank you for putting into words what I have struggled with.

In case anyone doesn’t know, Justice League director, Zack Snyder, recently announced that he would be stepping down from the project due to a family tragedy.

Snyder only announced this because knowing the internet he knew that if he had simply said he was stepping down, loads of bloggers and clickbait websites would have gone on to write inaccurate articles about how “Hack Snyder ruins the DCEU once again”, or “WB finally washes its hand of Zack before he creates another disaster.”

Over the years it’s become incredibly clear that critics and bloggers have used their opinion on Snyder to become nothing but massive jerks.

And in doing so not only have these bloggers, websites posted incredibly hurtful stories about Zack but they’ve taken it to a personal level.

Just yesterday I got into a huge argument with a Critic, who I once had massive respect for, because she decided to make a terrible joke about how she was completely confident that Zack Snyder hated his mother.

Look I understand that Zack isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, hey I consider myself a fan and even I don’t love all of his work.

But please, please, can we stop with the massive personal attacks on this guy. Snyder is a kind man who every single person who has worked with him has praised to the high heavens for being a gentleman. And many actress​ have said that if it wasn’t for him they would have quit acting.

He’s not a misogynist, or some Right Wing Ayn Rand obsessed psychopath, or some edgelord who wants to ruin your childhood.

He’s just a guy who has feelings just like us and that often gets forgotten about.

Right now Snyder needs some time to make peace with a family tragedy and a kind word could a long way. And if you can’t do that feel free to say nothing at all. You have already proven your character.

THE SODDER FAMILY TRAGEDY

On Christmas Eve 1945, five of the Sodder Children—Maurice, 14; Martha 12; Louis, 9; Jennie, 8; and Betty, 5 — were trapped inside the family home when it caught fire at 1 a.m. Their father George tried valiantly to save them, but he couldn’t reenter the house. His daughter Marion raced to a neighbor’s place to call for the fire department, but no help arrived until 8 a.m. By then, the house was nothing but a pile of ash.

The remaining Sodders assumed the children were dead, but the Christmas Day search of the remains showed no bodies. It was suggested by the fire chief that the fire had been hot enough to completely cremate all five bodies.

But there was something else to consider. George Sodder, born Giorgio Soddu in Italy, was no fan of Mussolini — and he was not quiet about it. After refusing to purchase insurance from a salesman mere months prior to the fire, the salesman threatened him by saying, “Your goddamn house is going to go up in smoke, and your children are going to be destroyed. You are going to be paid for the dirty remarks you have been making about Mussolini.” Additionally, the older Sodder sons had noticed just before Christmas a man parked near their house, watching the children as they came home from school.

Jennie Sodder, the matriarch of the family, didn’t understand how there could be five children who died in the fire and not leave anything behind. A crematorium employee told her that bones could still remain intact in a two-hour fire at 2,000 degrees. Their house had burned down in 45 minutes. She also noticed that in the basement of their house, household appliances were burned and melted, but recognizable.

Many more odd occurrences turned up as the family wondered how and why this happened to them—their wiring had been cut and was not faulty as previously expected, a witness said they saw someone fiddling with George’s car, a family member said they had heard something hit the roof shortly before the fire—but one of the strangest things that happened was almost 20 years later in 1968.

Jennie Sodder received a letter addressed only to her, postmarked Kentucky with no return address. There was a photo of a dark-haired man in his 20s. On the other side was a handwritten note:

Louis Sodder. I love brother Frankie. Ilil Boys. A90132 or 35.

The man bore a striking resemblance to presumed-dead Louis Sodder. The family jumped at the opportunity and sent a private investigator to Kentucky—he was never heard from again.

The last remaining Sodder, Sylvia, still doesn’t believe her siblings died in that fateful fire, but no one has any further clues as to where—or why—they disappeared.

While I was making cherry almond clusters, I was thinking about that post about Leia being Bail and Mothma’s big plan to deal with the Death Star, and now I’m sad that we never got to see Obi-Wan deal with Leia.

Can you imagine? He sees the message from Artoo and he’s like, “wow, she looks like Padme, wow, Bail and Breha did a great job, but she’s in trouble so let’s go.” And then he’s stuck on the Falcon with Han and Luke and he’s like, it will be so nice to talk to a calm, reasonable person again, because Han is amusing but annoying and Luke is–Luke is too many memories of his father and a sweetness that Obi-Wan doesn’t want to see stripped from him, and it’s not the boy’s fault Obi-Wan has all this baggage, but Leia will be refreshingly baggage-free.

And then he meets her.

hollywoodreporter.com
Zack Snyder Steps Down From 'Justice League' to Deal With Family Tragedy
The filmmaker's daughter died by suicide in March, prompting him to take a break from work and Joss Whedon to finish the Warner Bros. superhero pic: "I’ve decided to take a step back from the movie to be with my family, be with my kids, who really need me."

Snyder tells The Hollywood Reporter he is stepping away from Justice League, Warner Bros.’ all-star DC Comics superhero mega-movie that is in post-production, in order to deal with the sudden death of his daughter. Snyder’s wife, Deborah Snyder, who is a producer on Justice League, also is taking a break to focus on the healing of their family.

Stepping in to shepherd the movie through post and the shooting of some additional scenes will be Joss Whedon, the Avengers filmmaker and creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. With Whedon’s help, the movie is still on track for its Nov. 17 release date.

“In my mind, I thought it was a cathartic thing to go back to work, to just bury myself and see if that was way through it,” says an emotional Snyder in an interview Monday in his office on the Warner Bros. lot with Deborah sitting by his side. “The demands of this job are pretty intense. It is all consuming. And in the last two months I’ve come to the realization …I’ve decided to take a step back from the movie to be with my family, be with my kids, who really need me. They are all having a hard time. I’m having a hard time.” The studio is fully behind the move. “What they are going through is unimaginable, and my heart — our hearts — go out to them, says Warner Bros. Pictures president Toby Emmerich.

One of the first things the studio floated was the possibility of pushing back the release date of the movie, but the Snyders decided against that suggestion. Warners also extended Snyder’s first-look deal to give him time to work on other planned projects when he returns to work.

Snyder, after screening a rough cut of Justice League for fellow filmmakers and friends, wanted to add additional scenes, so he brought Whedon on board to write them. But as he prepared to shoot the scenes in England, Snyder realized it was not the time to leave home. “The directing is minimal and it has to adhere to the style and tone and the template that Zack set,” says Emmerich. “We’re not introducing any new characters. It’s the same characters in some new scenes. He’s handing a baton to Joss but the course has really been set by Zack. I still believe that despite this tragedy, we’ll still end up with a great movie.”

Here’s the thing, I never planned to make this public,” he says. “I thought it would just be in the family, a private matter, our private sorrow that we would deal with. When it became obvious that I need to take break, I knew there would be narratives created on the internet. They’ll do what they do. The truth it…I’m past caring about that kind of thing now.”

(read more)

Family Tragedy

Shiro quickly walked towards Lance’s room, a worry line etched onto his face. He had only heard the tail end of his and Keith’s argument but he knew that Keith had touched a sensitive nerve in the blue paladin, one that was certainly off limits.
“Why can’t you ever be serious?! If you don’t take this seriously, the Galra will go to Earth and kill all of our families and its going to be all your fault!

Shiro winced at the memory, he could only imagine what Lance was thinking about at the moment, he didn’t spare Keith a glance before he was chasing Lance down the hallway toward the paladin bedrooms. He stopped in front of the blue paladin’s.
“Lance? Are you in here?” Shiro asked the dark room, as he quietly creeped in. He saw the blanket on top of Lance’s bed give a twitch at the sound of his voice. He crept forward and sat on the edge of the bed, close enough to reach out and touch, but still enough to give the teen his space.
“What do you want Shiro?” Lance’s muffled voice asked from underneath his blanket barrier.
“I just wanted to see if you were alright,” Shiro replied looking at the lump.
“I’m surprised that you aren’t comforting Keith,” Lance grumbled at the leader. Shiro flinched slightly at that but let out a sigh after a moment.
“I don’t always take Keith’s side for everything you kno-” Shirt started.
“Coulda fooled me,” Lance interrupted peeking his head out from under the covers; revealing puffy red rimmed eyes. Shiro lost his breath when he saw the damage that Keith’s harsh words caused the paladin.
“I know that it seems like I take Keith’s side more often than not; but I know that Keith was in the wrong this time,” He replied looking into Lance’s eyes. He frowned when he saw that tears were beginning to gather in the blue pools.
“Why does he hate me so much?” He whispered. Shiro’s mouth dropped open a little in shock.
“He doesn’t hate you Lance. No one hates you,” He said flustered by the suddenly crying teen, he quickly scooped him up, blanket and all into his lap.
“Then why did he say something like that?” Shiro sighed bringing his hand up to card it through the dark brown locks.
“I don’t know, but I know that one day we will get back to Earth and you will see your family again,” he said trying to sound reassuring to the teen. He felt a slight tremor go through Lance’s body before suddenly he started sobbing against Shiro’s shoulder.
“Oh, did I say something wrong? Are you okay?” He asked worriedly tilting Lance’s face so that he was looking into his eyes. Lance’s lips trembled before he coughed out another sob.
“E-even if we do make it back to Earth, my family won’t be saved,“ he choked out. Shiro’s eyebrows drew together in confusion. Lance looked down as more tears rolled down his cheeks.
“They’re all dead Shiro, I’m the only one out of my family left,” Shiro let out a choked gasp and enveloped Lance in a crushing hug, pressing Lance’s head into his shoulder. His eyes teared up at the thought that Lance was holding onto this information for so long without any of them being the wiser. It brought all the memories of Lance happily talking about his family to the forefront of his mind. The smiles and laughs that he would let out at the mention of his siblings or parents, and the fond memories he would tell them about his aunts, uncles and cousins; and the admiration in his eyes when he talked about his veteran grandparents who met at the Garrison as pilots and wanted to follow in their footsteps.
“I’m so so sorry Lance, I had no idea,” he whispered to distraught teen. He rubbed his back when it seemed like he was at the end of his crying.
“You were never meant to, no one was supposed to, not even Hunk knows,” he stated leaning his head against Shiro’s shoulder to be able to look at him.
“There was a series of unfortunate events, or what seemed like it I guess. Just one after the other they started getting in accidents that would take their lives; house fires, armed robberies, even murders and then, I was the only one left,” he stated giving a small hiccuping sob at the end. “Then Voltron happened, and I guess this is the universe telling me that I’m not supposed to make it back to Earth, I have no family to welcome me back anyway,”
“No! Thats not true!” Shiro yelled surprising Lance, who was shocked to see tears rolling down his leader’s face. “You have us! You’re our family now, and when we get back to Earth we still will be, you can live with me and Keith, or Pidge, or Hunk, heck Coran will probably adopt you. So don’t you ever think that you’re alone; because you’re not, and we will always be here for you,” Shiro cried holding Lance tighter and tighter with every passing second. Lance’s breath hitched before he started sobbing again whispers of ‘thank you’s slipping out every few seconds. It felt like several hours passed before they were both calm again. Lance sat up and gave Shiro a grateful smile.
“Thank you for everything Shiro, sorry for being a burden,”
“You’re not a burden Lance, if you ever need to talk about anything, you can come to me, I’ll listen, I’ll always be there for you,” He replied standing up beside the bed. “Do you need anything before I leave? I could get you some food and water if you want it,” he offered.
“No thanks Shiro, you’ve done more than enough for me,” he smiled at the leader, who smiled back.
“Alright, tell me if you need anything, anything at all, I don’t mind,” he reminded him as he walked out the door. Lance only waved.

friendly reminder to the dceu fans

if justice league is panned by critics, folks will blame zack snyder (like always)

if justice league is NOT panned by critics, folks will say it’s thanks to zack snyder being “fired”

if they even so much as remotely imply that “oh its a good thing wb got rid of snyder”, remind them that zack snyder only left justice league at the end of filming because of a PRIVATE FAMILY TRAGEDY, and everyone involved in the production loves and respects him, and tried to preserve his vision in his absence.

also tell them to shove their bad opinions up their ass.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid isn’t about the gay love between Greg Heffley and Rawley. It’s about philosophy, life and death, growing up, anxiety and depression, family politics, meta-tragedy deconstruction, zoo wee mama, eternity, politics, etc. I don’t want to come off condescending, but I get a little frustrated that the tumblr Jeff Kinney fandom consistently reduces the grand wimp’s work to be simply a collection of secret queer relationships.

You all know I love Star Wars, its family story, its tragedy, the epic adventure, the fall and redemption of Vader/Anakin but…but..in my mind there will always be a little room for AUs where Anakin kills Palpatine when he has to, no one of my favourite characters dies, everyone is happy.

anonymous asked:

Can you recommend some good books for someone in a slump after finishing all the Outlander books? :)

You want me to recommend books? 😍😍😍

Now, for me, recommendations kind of depend on what kind of thing you’re looking for as well as what some of your other tastes include – i.e. the Outlander series is a good starting point, but I’d need to know more of what you like to give a truly effective recommendation. 

But, there are plenty of books that I can recommend generally, so…

Originally posted by arrowreactiongifs


Lenny’s Book Recommendations Masterlist

Highest recommendations are in all caps. Sorting by genre/category but in no particular order. Also including links to my reviews for the ones I have reviews for. If anyone ever feels like talking books, please, please, please don’t hesitate to drop by my inbox/chat me up. If you have questions, recommendations, etc. I am always ready to talk books.

*These are by no means the only books I recommend. If you send me a list of your 5-10 favorite books/series, I can probably give you a more specific list of recommendations (this is an open invitation to do exactly this; I love tailoring recommendations). 

Update: Newest additions are bolded

Young Adult Fiction

HUNGER GAMES TRILOGY by Suzanne Collins **cannot recommend highly enough** - dystopic young adult fiction at its best

Heartless by Marissa Meyer - Queen of Hearts origin story

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer (second book is the weakest but all the rest are fantastic; Winter is my favorite) - if you like reworked fairy tales

The Selection Series by Kiera Cass (mostly just the first and fourth books though) - a bit of a The Bachelor/reality dating show but with a dash of dystopia

Graceling Trilogy by Kristin Cashore - some humans with magical/superhuman abilities; fighting against an oppressive ruler; fantasy setting

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher - intriguing narrative structure; does explore a teen’s suicide

HARRY POTTER SERIES by J.K. Rowling (cause duh) - wizard school shenanigans and defeating a dark wizard (if you aren’t already aware)

The Circle of Magic Quartet by Tamora Pierce - fantasy; four children brought up learning specific magical skill sets based on unique, elementally linked abilities

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson - teen girl’s struggles with school and friends after her rape

A COURT OF THORNS AND ROSES SERIES by Sarah J. Maas *recommended to me by @bonnie-wee-swordsman​/ @acotargaryen​; fantasy (very sex positive); a human is brought into fae territory as war appears to be brewing and threatening her own human territory as well; as the series progresses, themes related to consent and agency grow stronger in ways that are ideal for YA audiences; Book 2 (A Court of Mist and Fury) is the best as far as both content and pacing

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard - (I’m just starting Book 2) a bit of a cross between dystopic fiction and fantasy (so right in my genre sweet spot); Silvers rule over Reds but one Red girl threatens to upset that balance

Young Adult Historic Fiction

Mine Eyes Have Seen by Ann Rinaldi - John Brown’s raid on Harper’s Ferry as experienced through one of his daughters

A Break with Charity by Ann Rinaldi - Salem witch trials through the eyes of a young woman who knows the accusers

Sisters of the Quantock Hills Quartet by Ruth Elwin Harris - four sisters (artistically inclined) deal with the trio of brothers they love as WW I impacts their lives

ANNE OF GREEN GABLES SERIES by L. M. Montgomery **not really historic fiction as it was contemporary, but SUCH an important book/series for young Lenny** - an eccentric and imaginative orphan girl is adopted by an elderly brother and sister on Prince Edward Island in the nineteenth century

Time Travelers Quartet by Caroline B. Cooney - a teen girl stumbles through time to the Victorian era where she meets a young man and gets caught up in his family’s troubles

Summer of My German Soldier by Bette Greene - a young Jewish girl encounters a young German POW during WW II

Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse - a young girl’s reminiscences of family tragedy during the Dust Bowl; presented in poems, free verse

Non Fiction

What We Talk About When We Talk About Clone Club by Gregory E. Pence - bioethics and philosophy in Orphan Black

The Romanov Sisters by Helen Rappaport - the lives of the Romanov daughters with quite a bit about their mother as well; also a lot about the family’s life under house arrest and their ultimate deaths

Dead Wake by Erik Larson - the circumstances and events surrounding the sinking of the Lusitania

The Pope and Mussolini by David I. Kertzer - the relationship between the Roman Catholic Church under Pius XI and Mussolini as he rose and took power of Italy

Zealot by Reza Aslan - an exploration of the life of the historic figure of Jesus of Nazareth (what history has recorded as opposed to the Bible’s understanding of the man)

In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson - the rise of Hitler and the Nazi party in Germany as experienced by the American ambassador in Berlin and his family

QUIET by Susan Cain **an empowering MUST read for introverts** - exploring introversion, its many facets, and how business culture/society at large works for and against introverts

The Lost Painting by Jonathan Harr - the search for and discovery of a lost Caravaggio painting

THE DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY by Erik Larson - looking at serial killer H.H. Holmes and the development of the Chicago World’s Fair; both in action at the same time and in the same area

War is a Force that Gives us Meaning by Christ Hedges - a look at nationalistic wars in the 20th century and the patterns, similarities between them

Eats, Shoots and Leaves by Lynne Truss - humor, punctuation, and history

Alternative History

The Boleyn Trilogy by Laura Andersen - what if Anne Boleyn had given birth to Henry VIII’s son after having had Elizabeth? A novel centered on that son’s reign and the friends he and Elizabeth have in common

The Tudor Legacy Trilogy by Laura Andersen (a sequel trilogy to The Boleyn Trilogy) - what if Elizabeth I had had an heir? Elizabeth’s marriage to Philip II of Spain is falling apart but she has her daughter Anne Isabel as her heir

Science Fiction/Dystopic Fiction

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (LOVED the adaptation; definitely recommend checking it out along with the book) - looking at women’s lives when reproduction falls under state/government control

THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER/THE PARABLE OF THE TALENTS by Octavia Butler - environmental disaster ensues and chaos reigns but Lauren finds and creates a functioning community amongst fleeing survivors sharing her new and developing religion with them

MADDADDAM TRILOGY by Margaret Atwood (I seriously need HBO to get their shit together and get moving on the adaptation of this trilogy) - the world has ended as we know it thanks to one possibly mad scientist but some of humanity survived along with the humanoid species that scientist engineered

THE FIRST FIFTEEN LIVES OF HARRY AUGUST by Claire North - some people turn out to be capable of being reborn into their same life over and over; they can affect the world around them but largely agree altering things drastically should be avoided… but not everyone is willing to follow the rules

Lilith’s Brood (the Xenogenesis Trilogy) by Octavia Butler (not going to be to everyone’s taste, even for sci fi lovers, but I just LOVE Octavia Butler) -aliens save what’s survived of the human race but seek to adapt themselves so that they can continue a new race/species with the humans; those children face trials of their own as the generations continue to develop (really good series if you’re interested in gender identity/non-binary sexuality, etc.)

Fledgling by Octavia Butler - a young surviving alien whom humans mistake for a vampire must find her way after the rest of her family are destroyed but others of her kind consider her an abomination and want her destroyed too

The Space Between the Stars by Anne Corlett - science fiction lite; a virus wipes out nearly the whole of the human race leaving the survivors scattered across space (where population and government issues had forced many to colonize) fighting to find each other and decide what their collective future should be

Historic Fiction

THE KILLER ANGELS by Mike Sharra - the battle of Gettysburg through the eyes of some of the commanders on both sides

The Stargazer’s Sister by Carrie Brown - a novel about Caroline Herschel

The Girl from the Train by Irma Joubert - a little girl escapes one of the trains headed to the death camps in WW II Poland but after the war is transported out of Poland (which is falling under Communist Russia’s thumb) and adopted by a family in Africa

Orhan’s Inheritance by Aline Ohanesian - deals with the Armenian genocide during WW I

Vanessa and her Sister by Priya Parmar - a novel about the Bloomsbury Group, specifically Virginia Woolf and her sister, Vanessa

Poldark Series by Winston Graham - the lives and trials of a mine owning family in Cornwall in the late 18th century; social/class issues a central theme

Silence by Shusaku Endo - a 17th centuryJesuit goes to Japan to investigate apostasy of a priest there and witnesses the plight of the local Christians **I had no idea until now that Silence movie I’ve seen advertised briefly was an adaptation of this book**

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy by John le Carré - Cold War espionage in England; there’s a mole giving valuable information to the Soviets and he must be found before too much is compromised

The True Story of Hansel and Gretel by Louise Murphy - a novel about the concentration camps in WW II and two children who try and manage to escape

North and South Trilogy by John Jakes - two young men bond at West Point and their families become fast friends but as tensions rise and war breaks out, they’re on opposite sides of the Civil War

Literary Fiction

The Golem and the Jinnie by Helene Wecker *recommended to me by @dingbatland - two mythical creatures rooted in different cultures find themselves unexpectedly in New York at the turn of the 20th century

Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood - a young woman is accused of murdering her employer and coworker in the mid-19th century and is convicted but there are many who doubt her guilt (inspired by a true case)

ATONEMENT by Ian McEwan **my favorite Ian McEwan novel and a fantastic movie adaptation** - perspective and appearances matter as a young girl’s accusation changes the lives of her sister and the young man she loves with fall out that carries the family through WW II

THE POISONWOOD BIBLE by Barbara Kingsolver - a missionary brings his wife and four girls to the Belgian Congo in 1959 and it changes the family forever; the story is told in first person narration through each of the girls’ perspectives and is unparalleled

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon - an autistic young man tries to make sense of an incident that happened and what it means for his important routines

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden (currently my favorite recent release recommendation) - Russian folktales are woven into a story where the traditions of the rural outskirts of society clash with the power and will of the Church

The Star-Touched Queen Series by Roshani Chokshi - the daughter of a raja is rumored to be cursed but there is one suitor who wants her and brings her to a realm she’s only heard of in stories; rooted in Indian mythology; Book 2, A Crown of Wishes follows the sister of the lead from Book 1 as she accompanies a young (and powerless) prince to the Otherworld to compete in the Tournament of Wishes

The Life and Death of Sophie Stark by Anna North - a young film maker’s life and death are told and examined by some of the people in her life: former lovers, friends, acquaintances, family

MOTHER NIGHT by Kurt Vonnegut - a politically indifferent playwright who ended up working for the Nazis writes his memoirs while on trial for the role he played in the regime

Room by Emma Donoghue - a young woman and her son escape the man who kidnapped the woman and kept her in isolation for years but then must adjust to the real world again; told from the young boy’s perspective

The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison - a young, poor African-American girl grows up in Depression Era Ohio; explores race relations, societal concepts of beauty, etc. (Morrison’s first novel)

A Mercy by Toni Morrison - explores the origins of slavery in early America (1692), namely through the women living and working on a farm in Virginia (a group including immigrants, natives, and Africans)

Mystery/Crime/Thriller/Horror

The Yard by Alex Grecian - in the wake of Jack the Ripper, the new homicide division of Scotland Yard is under scrutiny but there also appears to be someone out to kill their detectives; interesting look at the early methods of both the detectives and forensic science

Cormoran Strike Series by Robert Galbraith aka J.K. Rowling (the second is my favorite cause I read revenge tragedies in one of my grad classes) - Cormoran Strike is a private detective in desperate need of paying clients; when a young woman shows up from a temp agency determined to do more than just reception work about the same time an old friend appears looking for answers in his famous model sister’s death, things begin to change for Strike’s business prospects

The Godfather by Mario Puzo - Italian mafia battles in New York following WW II

The Shining by Stephen King - a family settle into an enormous hotel in the mountains to live as caretakers there for the winter but the hotel appears to have other plans for them and especially the gifted son

The Millenium Trilogy by Stieg Larsson (but watch out for book four; it was ghost written after Larsson’s death a few years ago and is not based on his notes for book four) - a disgraced reporter looks for a project to work on while his infamy blows over but gets dragged into a decades old case; a young hacker with her own issues with the Swedish government and social work system becomes involved too and an odd partnership is born; later the woman’s personal and family history begin to cause problems and garner the public’s attention for the wrong reasons

AND THEN THERE WERE NONE by Agatha Christie - a group of houseguests arrive at a large and secluded island home for a weekend away but their host doesn’t appear to be present and what’s more, none of them have met him or her; when people start dying, those remaining begin to suspect one another

I Let You Go by Clare Mackintosh - when a child is killed in a hit-and-run crash, the authorities investigating find themselves dealing with a confusing mess while a woman somehow connected to the case and who recently relocated tries to rebuild a life for herself 

Fantasy/Fantasy-ish

The All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness (third book was my favorite) - a young woman who’s long denied her calling as a witch stumbles across an ancient and powerful text that just about everyone in the supernatural world (that she’s done her best to ignore) wants

The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman - a man returning to his hometown for a funeral begins to recall some strange events from his childhood and the young girl he had been friends with

THE NIGHT CIRCUS by Erin Morgenstern **going to do a reread of this sometime this year** - magicians battle with one another through proxies but those two proxies form an unexpected relationship

THE CHILD THIEF by Brom - a very dark and intriguing take on the Peter Pan story that borrows some Avalon mythology, the accompanying artwork is amazing, even in digital form

LORD OF THE RINGS by J. R. R. Tolkien (I’m not a fan of The Hobbit though) - the ring of power must be destroyed to prevent a dark lord from taking over MiddleEarth and an unassuming hobbit is entrusted with the task

The Midnight Queen by Sylvia Izzo Hunter - a (wrongfully) disgraced student of magick meets up with a professor’s daughter who longs to learn and truths begin to emerge along with powers neither understand yet

Classics

The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas - Louis XIII’s musketeers seek to protect the country and their king from the machinations of Cardinal Richelieu

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas - a young man’s life appears to be falling into place before he is falsely accused of conspiring to restore Napoleon and imprisoned for twenty years; when he escapes, he seeks revenge on those who locked him away

North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell - when a young woman’s family circumstances force them to leave their home in the southern countryside and relocate to an industrial town in the north, she becomes acquainted with one of the mill owners and the poor conditions faced by the workers and their families; romantic, socio-economic, and philosophical tensions arise

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE by Jane Austen - bad first impressions can still lead to deep love and understanding… eventually

PERSUASION by Jane Austen - when a woman’s former flame returns, she laments the advice that she’d followed years before in breaking off their engagement but is it too late or does he still have feelings for her too?

CRIME AND PUNISHMENT by Fyodor Dostoyevsky **possibly my favorite novel of all time but it’s definitely not for everyone** - a young man firmly believes that the ends justify the means, even when it comes to murder… until he tries it and finds himself wracked with guilt; can he be redeemed and if so, how?

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy - a flirtation becomes an affair and a woman must decide how to handle her husband and her lover as her life changes against the backdrop of a drastically changing Russia

The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton - a young woman learns the hard way just how difficult it is to keep running in the circles of high society when one has no money and must rely on the generosity of one’s friends, especially when rumors start to fly

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens - a family is threatened by the changing tides in revolutionary Paris and they fight to escape to the safety of London 

(**personally, my favorite Dickens novel is Our Mutual Friend but A Tale of Two Cities and Great Expectations aren’t as intimidating and are excellent for getting used to Dickens’ style**)

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck - a family is forced off their property by the banks and circumstances during the Great Depression and Dust Bowl, so they head west where there are supposed to be plenty of jobs in California but will they survive the journey and will those jobs still be there when they and everyone else in their situation actually arrive

The Moon is Down by John Steinbeck - a town is invaded in WW II and order is imposed by the invaders but it proves not to be as gentle as the invaders would have the people believe and the townsfolk aren’t as compliant as they first appear

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez - **you either love magical realism or you hate it; I LOVE it** - the story of the Buendía family and the town they founded, Macondo, where unusual things tend to happen

Guilty Pleasures

Virgin Series by Radhika Sanghani - a young woman wants to lose her virginity but her embarrassing experiences in the past and navigating societal expectations have her worried it will never happen **very funny and body/sex positive*

The Constant Princess by Philippa Gregory - a novel about Catherine of Aragon and her marriages to two princes of England, Arthur and then his younger brother, Henry VIII

The White Queen by Philippa Gregory - the first in her Cousins War/War of the Roses series (I need to 1. watch the Starz adaptation of this book and 2. get around to reading the next books in this series)

The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory - a novel about Anne Boleyn’s sister, Mary, who had an affair with Henry VIII first and then watched her sister’s rise and fall

Let Me Introduce You To Someone Named Kate Kane AKA....

BATWOMAN MOTHERFUCKERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

KATE KANE!!! FUCKING KATE KANE!!!

FUCK YES! i love Kate Kane’s Batwoman! she is my favorite female superhero. But i am going to put aside my fangirling to explain why she ranks among the long list of good female characters. 

Upon your first look she’s a copy of Bruce Wayne, Heir to a wealthy family, There was a tragedy in said family when she was a girl [Though she still has a living parent afterwards] and of course she wears a bat costume and goes around Gotham fighting crime. She even gets her own personal Robin [Firebird] later. However Kate has come into her own and become a superhero in her own right.

After her mother’s death and her sister’s…death. Kate was brought up by her father and was at one point enrolled at West Point before her expulsion because she refused to hide she was a lesbian. And the next few years of her life were basically her spiraling downwards until her chance encounter with Batman that inspired her to don a mask herself.

As well as being incredibly competent when it comes to fighting. Kate is also the definition of Tough. She has shown strength both mentally and physically during circumstances such as successfully killing a man after he’d stabbed her in the heart, often pushes through recovery quickly so she can return to work rescued her father while battling nasty hallucinations at the same time and after being crushed by a rock she willingly overdosed so she could be brought back Lazurus-Pit style and then just went straight back to work. [HOW DO YOU EVEN!!!] 

Personality-wise she is extremely dedicated to her work and is respectful and proud of her military upbringing. She’s also bluntly honest, particularly when it comes to topics such as her sexuality and refuses to conform to expectations of her behavior, giving her a rebellious streak. She also absolutely HAS to have a cause to support or she believes she will drift in life again and despite her claims she has a deep-seated need to be loved and this shows through her interactions with Renee Montoya and Maggie Sawyer. But throughout it all Kate Kane is a tough, proud, honest LGBT crime-fighter who hates mornings and is always prepared for the cause. [And she can just marry me right now]

Also she has an action figure so get out your Christmas lists.

Next Time: We go back in time before Wonder Woman to look at a forgotten female superheroine.

So, lets talk about Krem and classism. Fandom tends to focus heavily on Krems backstory and trauma as an issue of transphobia, and while that is true, the reason why it got as violent and dangerous as it did was in great part due to his status as a poor soparati. 

I mean; lets be clear; punishment for being trans in the military was not slavery; it was a heavy fine. A fine that Krem, being very poor, had no chance of paying and therefore was given the choice between slavery or death. This is an excellent example of the ways in which the criminal justice system effects poor people way harder; Krems punishment is slavery or death. A rich trans persons punishment would be a fine and a discharge. 

We also see this difference with Maevaris; she was allowed to marry a man, which implies that she is legally recognized as a woman and given rights that are exclusively given women. This is a right that is explicitly, and violently, denied Krem and we can only assume the reason for that is Maevaris social standing. 

This is also the reason why I disagree that Dorian and Krem’s stories are fundemantally similar. To me, Dorians story is largely a personal tragedy of family abuse and unaccaptence. Krem’s story is largely one of systematic, state-sanctioned violence and inescapable poverty. They’re both queer, and they both left Tevinter for reasons related to it, but that’s about as far as the similiarities go.    

Pa

There once was a man named Pa, a title won over the course of his over 90 years, a big old military man, a joker and a king. He was a Texan and he raised his children to be good, god fearing people. He fought in the navy in world war 2 and was an air force man during both the Korean and Vietnam wars. He was tall, so tall that when I was younger I swore there wasn’t a man alive taller than my Pa. His wife, the woman I’ve only ever known as granny, however is a delicate thing, her skin like paper, her bones porcelain. He was a giant, she a bird. He was, still is one of the brightest memories from my childhood. And today I lost him.

Something in you breaks when a loved one dies. An uncomfortable snapping in your chest, or a terrible crushing weight upon your stomach, or any of the numerous feelings that our bodies use to express the sorrow, the grief. And some people have more of that something within them to break than others. Sometimes there are those that make a bigger crack, or tear it off completely and then there are those that for some reason barely made a dent.

I love my family. Sometimes my mothers side more than my fathers, (but I believe that has something to do with my complicated adoption situation) but I love them all. I have a lot of cracks in my something though, a great grandmother gone, a family dog twice over, my cousin who was barely thirty. I have seen enough of death to think myself desensitized to the whole thing. But I hadn’t noted that all the cracks are on one side.

Pa is the first on my dads side that I have lost, and the crack is new and fresh and painful and oh so very large. He is the first we’ll have to bury, and honestly the family is at a loss. Granny keeps asking for him, incapable of retaining the knowledge that he’s gone. Everyone is sort of shell shocked. We never thought we would have to bury Pa. I naively sort of assumed he would just live forever. His loss is indescribably difficult. 

I’m sorry for the really long post, and for whatever I was trying to get out here. I’m also sorry because I’d like to ask anyone who reads this to do something for me. I’m not religious as I know many of you also are not, but if you could take a moment to pray (or if you’re not comfortable with that send good thoughts) for my family right now. This is a situation we never even thought to prepare for and its hitting us all like a bag of bricks. Thank you, those that read this. And again sorry for the lengthy rant.