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BOOK NEWS FOR NOVEMBER 12TH: THE LOOKING GLASS CLUB, STEAMPUNK, ANTI-HEROES, RAPE IN FANTASY FICTION

by Dawn, November 12, 2010

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“The Looking Glass Club” — An Addictive New Thriller Now Available

via PR Web
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A new Sci-Fi thriller entitled “The Looking Glass Club” has just hit the North American market, and is currently available at Barnes & Noble and Amazon.com, where both hardcopy and electronic copies are offered. The book, independently published by Brit author, Gruff Davies, shot into Amazon UK’s Best Sellers Charts this week, listing 28th in the Thrillers section. The book is based in both Manhattan and London, and is highly original, witty and terrifying in equal measure. This fast-paced thriller grips from page one and won’t let go. Crammed with big ideas, and written with boundless imagination, this thought-provoking novel will delight and consume intelligent readers everywhere.

Additionally, the book offers readers more than 32 puzzles to solve and 2 competitions to go along with it. From now until Dec. 20th, the author is offering an iPad to one lucky and clever person who can solve all the puzzles in the first four chapters of the book. All the readers who have correctly solved the first four puzzles will be entered into a drawing being held on Dec. 21st. The lucky winner will receive an Apple iPad, courtesy of Gruff.

Read More here

Samhain’s Silk, Steel & Steam Anthology Now Available

by Heather Massey at The Galaxy Express
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Break out the brass goggles! Samhain Publishing just released it’s steampunk romance anthology! Titled SILK, STEEL, & STEAM, it features three e-novellas. Here they are:

BLUEBEARD’S MACHINE (Mari Fee)

Love, science, death. She is all three.

A Silk, Steel and Steam story.

Determined to discover what new experiment is stealing her husband’s attentions, Annette Parker ventures into forbidden territory—his study—only to discover a secret he would kill to keep. She is his fifth attempt to clone the original Annette and, according to his journal, he’s planning a sixth…after he dissects her dead body.

Warning: This book contains gadgets, guns, death rays, dirigibles, sexy scientists and a smoking hot Victorian spy who’s as much steam as she is punk. Don’t blame us if it makes you want to slip a pistol into your garter and abduct the man of your dreams.

Read An Excerpt here

Nathalie Gray on Anti-heroes and a Free Contest at Literary Escapism

by Heather Massey at The Galaxy Express

Nathalie Gray (THE DEMON’S SECRET) guest blogs about anti-heroes at Literary Escapism:

I don’t think I ever created a hero who had no issues, who couldn’t be called anti-hero, and who didn’t do a bad thing when the circumstances called for them.

Ah, good ol’ anti-heroes. Can’t live with ‘em, can’t live without ‘em! Nathalie Gray definitely delivers on the anti-heroes…

Read More here

Rape in Fantasy Fiction: A Narrative Necessity, Thematic Taboo or Just Plain Bad Taste?

by paulgoatallen at Barnes and Noble
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I usually don’t seek out and read a novel because of an intensely negative review but that was exactly the case with Beth Bernobich’s debut novel, Passion Play, the first installment of a fantasy saga set in a decidedly patriarchal society and revolving around Therez Zhalina, the 15-year old sheltered daughter of an affluent merchant who runs away from home when she discovers she has been essentially sold into a marriage to an influential – and quite possibly masochistic – leader of the local shipping guild. After buying a spot on a caravan, the naïve girl soon finds herself hundreds of miles from home and penniless. The morally bankrupt caravan master ruthlessly manipulates her and soon forces the girl into becoming a caravan whore.

The review I read online was an explanation as to why the reviewer couldn’t finish reading Passion Play – and her reaction was a severe one: “I don’t remember ever feeling this enraged or disgusted by a book… I wanted to hurt Passion Play…”

The controversy associated with this book does raise an interesting question: is rape in fantasy fiction an acceptable topic, a narrative necessity – integral for character development, etc. – or should it be taboo, even though it’s categorized as fantasy?

Read More here

The author of the rape posts talks about rape sequences in other books (like The Color Purple) which I don’t have a problem with. They are shown as traumatizing and something the character has to get through, NOT something that the lead female eventually enjoys. I promise, NO ONE enjoys getting raped. That’s why it’s called rape, not consensual sex. Rape is already downplayed in the media (and in courts), and things like this that prop up rape are part of the reason. So many times the victim gets blamed because she was in the wrong place at the wrong time and “should have known better” or was dressed provocatively and “asking for it”. And books and movies that feature rape scenes like this only encourage the idea that women will be ok with it. Using something that is actually an incredibly traumatizing experience as entertainment to sell Romance belittles victims experience. And in this case especially, with child rape, is terrible. I understand that it’s a fantasy, and that things like this happened in history, but that doesn’t make it ok to romanticize.

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