by Sabrina Rojas Weiss at MTV: ‘Beautiful Creatures’ Puts The Goth In Southern Gothic: The Book Report
So many of us who’ve grown up in small towns can relate to Ethan Wate, the narrator of “Beautiful Creatures.” He’s lived his whole life in Gatlin, South Carolina, as have generations of his family, but he’s been counting the days until he can escape its Civil War-obsessed, small-minded borders. And as much as Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl’s debut novel, which was optioned by Warner Bros. on the week of its release, is about the new girl with magical powers, it’s also about Ethan’s more common struggle. That’s what sets it apart from the supernatural YA novel of the week.

Ethan is intrigued when he hears there’s a new girl in school — someone from the outside world he longs to join. Lena Duchannes is labeled off-limits by the rest of the kids when they find out she’s the niece of Old Man Ravenwood, who lives shut away in a frightening mansion on the outskirts of town. Still, Ethan is drawn to the beautiful, black-haired girl with sparkling green eyes, and when he comes to her defense against the vicious taunts of the in-crowd, he finds himself an outcast too.

“Beautiful Creatures,” the first in a planned five-part series, is full of deliciously dark, Southern Gothic atmosphere, which Lena matches (or creates?) with her own moody despair. But we readers are saved from doom and gloom by Ethan’s determined pragmatic attitude, and we cling to his hope that that will be enough to save Lena too.

Read the review here

from Patrick Lee at Sci Fi Wire: Firefly to live on in new book of short stories
Joss Whedon’s beloved Firefly/Serenity is long gone, but you can’t stop the signal: Fans can look for more adventures of Capt. Mal Reynolds and the crew of the doughty ship in a series of short stories coming soon from Titan Books.

Writer/producer Jane Espenson—who wrote one episode of the Fox sci-fi series but is a longtime friend and colleague of Whedon’s going back to her days on Buffy the Vampire Slayer—told us that she will be writing one of the stories, centering on the characters of Kaylee and Wash (obviously set in a time period before the events of the movie Serenity).

“I’m writing a short story set in the Firefly universe that someone’s putting together,” Espenson said in an interview on Sunday in Pasadena, Calif., where she was promoting her upcoming Syfy series Caprica. “Titan Books is putting together a collection written by various of the Firefly writers. But [it’s a] very short story, … 2,000 words.”

Read More here

I’m very excited about the short stories. I tried to read the comic book, but I just can’t get into that style. Short stories would be better. Better still would be if the show got renewed, but it’s Fox so there’s no chance.

What do you think of Beautiful Creatures? Will you read the Firefly short stories?