Tuesday, July 01, 2008

6.30 reading weekly

This week's reading was a wild swerve away from last week's. While I am slowly making my way through Sea of Sorrows by Michelle West, I certainly have not been a one book woman this week.

1. Nine Coaches Waiting by Mary Stewart
2. The Nine Tailors by Dorothy Sayers
3. Madam Will You Talk by Mary Stewart
4. Wingarden by Elsie Lee
5. The Unknown Ajax by Georgette Heyer

Old favorites, one and all. And a new book:

6. The Snow Queen by Mercedes Lackey

This is a new entry in her Five Hundred Kingdoms series; a set of fairy tales retold with a charming twist to the basic concept. In her introduction to this book, Ms. Lackey references Dorothy Sayers comment that mystery books are where the reader can know that the good will prevail and the evil get their comeuppance. This, of course, not always true in the modern mystery, but it is most of the time. The modern fantasy and the modern romance novels also fall into this category.
There are those who point out that this attitude sets up unreasonable expectations in the minds of the impressionable, that life will always be perfect. While this may be true for some people, I think that an grim insistence on complete realism in one's reading is a mistake. A little escapism is good for the soul, once in a while.
This is not to say that I don't enjoy reading books that are a bit grittier at times, and I have moved past the stage (long since) where I was deeply crushed by any book that didn't have a happy ending. I do certainly appreciate stories that allow all genders to be equally competant at solving problems, and Ms. Lackey's books fit that bill as well.

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