i. I'm going to uni to get out of the kitchen, aren't I? How did I end up in catering?
ii. Hamlet was awesome, not least because I saw it with just_marzipan. *waves* Just to show you how much of a dork I am, I posted about it on the anonmeme the moment I got home.
iii. fannish5: What are your five favourite book cover designs or book cover illustrations? Book covers are weirdly important to me, though they're not the be-all and end-all. I was put off reading romance (still am, a bit) because of the horrible, horrible clinch covers. I can't tell you how many fantasy novels I've prevaricated over buying because the covers were so boring and generic.
1. Paul Kidby's anything, but especially Night Watch and Thud! I truly hope Paul Kidby carries out his threat of redesigning the covers of all the Discworld books, because I'd love to see what he makes of them. Terry Pratchett's not had much luck with covers (Josh Kirby's bizarre, weird-looking people, the boring American ones, the even more boring UK black covers) but he's struck gold in Paul Kidby.
2. The Worlds of Chrestomanci covers. They always have a centrepiece, usually Chrestomanci, and around him the world swirls. I don't care for the art so much as the idea behind it, though. And they've been redesigned, too, so now they look horrible and brightly-coloured and boring.
3. I really like the new Georgette Heyer covers. They all have a single unified theme - a painting of Regency women, with cursive handwriting spelling out the title. I suppose they could look a bit alike, and I see how it could get confusing...but they're so classy and neat and clean and it's clear that what you see is what you get.
4. Wicked! I think everyone knows this one - I like it because it takes the run-of-the-mill picture-of-protagonist fantasy novel cover and turns it into something not new, but different. I love the contrast of colours and how it suggests the contrast between Glinda and Elphaba.
5. The Handmaid's Tale. This is creepily effective (I thought I'd have nightmares after seeing it the first time, and I was so glad it wasn't the cover of my copy), and symbolic of the book's major preoccupation (a woman with her mouth sewn shut). That said, look at the latest cover. Yes, they did make The Handmaid's Tale look like your average supermarket quirky romance novel. I know.
i. I'm going to uni to get out of the kitchen, aren't I? How did I end up in catering?
( Small Gods, by Terry Pratchett )
Last but not least, The Turtle Moves.
1. Hermione and Benvolio, Romeo x Juliet. Yes, I'm totally cheating here. They start off as complete drips - I think Hermione's only lines in the first seven episodes or so consist of "Romeo-sama!" repeated ad nauseam. Benvolio, meanwhile, is like a less interesting version of Romeo. And anyone reading this journal knows my opinion of Romeo. But then something changed, i.e. them. Hermione was so damn miserable and ignored by all that I became protective of her. And by "protective", I mean that when Mercutio started trying to manipulate her into turning against Romeo, I laughed with glee because I was so delighted at the prospect of Hermione becoming Lucrezia Borgia or whatnot. Which, er, didn't happen. But something almost as good did: she ran away to Mantua and tried to kill Juliet and then became BFF with her (sort of). And Benvolio! He's utterly useless, and I mean that in the nicest way possible, because after Episode 7 he gets shoved into a situation where he has to be useful or he'll die. So he fetches and carries for Cordelia and Francisco makes fun of him (no, I still love that scene where Francisco suggests that he and Curio should have sex, complete with Rocky Horror hip-thrusting) and his very uselessness and irrelevance becomes endearing.
Note that both of these characters became interesting once they were away from Romeo. I think the only character I've liked in their scenes with Romeo is Mercutio, and that's because Mercutio is so awesome.
2. Yuki Sohma, Fruits Basket. Yes, I'm aware that this is sacrilege. I didn't really start liking Yuki until he had more scenes away from Tohru (I thought their relationship in the early volumes was sweet, but fairly boring in comparison with everything else). I think it was Volume 8 which made me genuinely begin to care for him as a character - his scenes with Haru in that are gold. It's the first volume where Yuki begins to develop away from his initial characterisation of "Prince Yuki", where we see his deep-seated insecurities ("I'm so selfish" "No one truly cares for me" "I wish I had friends") and also his good qualities. Nowadays, one of my favourite aspects of Fruits Basket is Yuki's relationship with Haru, how they look out for each other. Haru used to be in love with Yuki. Yuki was the first person to see Haru as Haru, rather than as the Ox. Haru teases Yuki with a completely straight face. Yuki tries to mend fences between Rin and Haru. Haru thinks they were sisters in a previous life! (No, really, for non-Furuba people on my flist. He really does think that.) And then there's the student council chapters - I don't think Yuki will ever find a better friend than Kakeru (except maybe Haru), however annoying he thinks he is. And Yuki is totally the Pink Power Ranger.
3. Sansa Stark, A Song of Ice and Fire. She's actually my favourite character now. She's a bratty, spoilt princess in her first chapters in A Game of Thrones, who you're already expecting to dislike from her sister Arya's chapters, and then of course there's ( spoilers for ASOIAF in general, just to be on the safe side ) Her role in a less shitty world than that of ASOIAF is, well, Arwen: she's the beautiful woman who bestows her favour on a gentle knight, and who supports her love with a handmade banner, and who is ultimately passive and overshadowed by the woman who fights back (in Sansa's case, Arya). But I've always liked Arwen and Cosette and Lavinia, and any number of women who don't get much in the way of characterisation but a lot in the way of the hero's love. I'm hoping Sansa does get her opportunity to fight back - and that the people who hate her come to understand the power of passive resistance and that there are more, and better, ways to get things done than to stab someone. Also, please, please don't let ( spoiler! ) rape her. Please, GRRM, I'll do anything.
4. Granny Weatherwax, Discworld. And let that be a lesson to all of you: don't start reading Discworld with Equal Rites. In retrospect, it's probably an excellent book, but to a twelve year old - no. Just no. It bored me senseless. I went on and I read the Watch books and the Death books and the Rincewind books quite happily, but I refused to return to the Granny Weatherwax series. Ever. And then I decided, finally, that I'd have another go - and read Wyrd Sisters. And then Witches Abroad, too, in the same sitting.
5. Susan Pevensie, Narnia. Actually, this is mostly in reaction to The Last Battle. Because I honestly didn't care for Susan all that much (she suffers from what I've heard called the Curse of Susans - usually the second eldest of four and the "mother", forced to be the sensible one and to curb all the gung-ho adventures). Edmund was - and still is - my favourite Narnia character. But Susan gets the short end of the stick all round - she doesn't have a chance to shine on her own, she even gets made into a damsel at one point (The Horse and His Boy) after accidentally starting a war, she's forced to leave Narnia early, she never returns, doesn't go to Aslan's country and, oh, yes, her entire family are killed in a train crash. Musn't forget that part. So I like her, because someone should.
N.B. All the titles listed are the titles of real zombie films.
( Dead & Breakfast [Anne of Green Gables, 608 words] )
( Zombies by Design [Chrestomanci, 622 words] )
( The Mental Dead [Discworld, 580 words] )
( Boy Eats Girl [Fruits Basket, 129 words] )
( Living Dead Lock Up [Murdoch Mysteries, 699 words] )
( Z: A Zombie Musical [Pushing Daisies, 708 words] )
( I Was a Teenage Zombie [The Silmarillion, 691 words] )
( Hot Wax Zombies on Wheels [Top Gear RPF, 450 words] )
( The Quick and the Undead [Wicked, 571 words] )
In what five fictional locations would you love to live?
1. Narnia. Because visitors to Narnia from another world are always righteous in what they do, and it would be nice to be righteous for once. Only, I'm working-class. I suspect that working-class people don't have the same luxury of being Always Right that upper-middle-class people do. (The Telmarines were pirates, right? Good enough.)
2. The Discworld. Because I am good at narrativium, having read a lot of books, and should therefore hopefully survive longer than five minutes.
3. London Below. Not to live, but to visit, with Warrior!Richard as my guide. I want to find out what the other place names mean, damn it.
4. Rainbow Bridge - the Norse one, not the Japanese one. I think it would be pretty. I could take photographs and then Thor would probably smash my skull in with Mjollnir, because taking photos is strictly forbidden. (It makes the colours fade. Delicate material.) The Asgardians take their "no heels, no shouting, no photos" policy really seriously.
But not Arda, I think. Valinor would bore me and Middle-Earth would scare me shitless. The Noldor were made of stern stuff.
Snow White and Rose Red (What Katy Did | Clover/Rose Red)
"O, my luve is like a red, red rose/That's newly sprung in June." Clover and Rose Red are living a dream.
Spider's Web (Greco-Roman mythology | Odysseus/Penelope)
Odysseus thinks that it was all his own idea. Penelope knows better.
Adore Our Own Athena (The Odyssey | Odysseus/Penelope, implied Odysseus/Athena/Penelope)
Penelope takes comfort in religion. Athena fulfils her promises.
call no man happy until he is dead (Count Cain | gen, implied Riff/Cain)
At this moment, Cain is happy.
The Truth of Others (A Song of Ice and Fire | Rhaegar/Lyanna)
All people know about Rhaegar and Lyanna is what suits their purposes.
The Cub's First Cub (Devil's Cub | Vidal/Mary)
Vidal awaited the birth of his first child with characteristic patience; that is to say, none.
Some Justice (Discworld - Night Watch | Carcer, Death)
A long drop and a short stop and Carcer's always got a plan. Pity it doesn't work.
Cry for Yesterday (The Chronicles of Narnia | Lucy, Edmund, Susan, Peter)
Susan finds it hard to cope with normal life. Lucy just doesn't want to.
A Splendid Orgy (Venetia | Damerel/Venetia)
The aftermath of a frankly magnificent orgy.
Something Less Than Ideal (Arthurian legend | Galahad, implied pairings)
Galahad's vow of chastity doesn't stop him wanting. Even if he wants to.
do not take thy flight (Emily of New Moon | Dean/Emily)
During their engagement, Dean is free to indulge in some adoration.
Claustrophobia (Swordspoint | Alec/Richard)
After the events of Swordspoint, Alec lies awake.
Mistletoe and Wine (Eight Days of Luke | Luke/David)
Luke comes home for Christmas.
the physicians of a mind diseased (The Secret History | Francis, Francis/Charles)
Francis loves words. He just wishes they worked for him.
Like David and Jonathan (The Bible - Old Testament | David/Jonathan)
"Like David and Jonathan". But what does that actually mean?
Turnabout (Chrestomanci - The Lives of Christopher Chant | Rosalie/Mordecai)
During TLoCC, Rosalie and Mordecai have a short, but quite important, conversation.
The Time For Parting Come (Chrestomanci - The Lives of Christopher Chant | Millie/Christopher)
Millie is going away to school again. Christopher sulks.
Duologue For Would-Be Lovers (Shakespeare - Romeo and Juliet | Romeo/Mercutio)
Romeo pines. Mercutio taunts him, to his own ultimate detriment.
The Wandering Jamie (The Homeward Bounders | Jamie, implied Jamie/Helen)
Jamie moves on.
Persuasion (The Prisoner of Zenda | Rupert of Hentzau/Count of Luzau-Rischenheim)
The Count of Luzau-Rischenheim, I am sorry to say, was entirely under Rupert's thumb.
Out of Narnia (The Chronicles of Narnia | Lucy)
Lucy, not feeling very valiant at all.