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Watership Down by Richard Adams

I found this book because a friend showed me a card in a bookstore she thought was funny. It had a small cartoon bunny holding a book called Watership Down with a horrified look on its face. She thought it was funny... Having never heard of the book I naturally didn't get it. Luckily for me I didn't just walk away. I asked what it was about and she explained to me it was a book about "bunnies who get into a war". While this is certainly part of the book it is far from the only part.

This book tells the story of a group of rabbits that are forced to find a new home. Along the way they make some new friends, and some enemies. One important thing to remember is that this is a children's story of sorts. Yes it has some heavy themes and tense moments but it is meant to be a fantasy adventure for older kids. Despite that I found was a fantastically written story that has introduced me to one of my favorite characters I have come across named Hazel. Hazel is the rabbit…

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Science Left Behind by Alex Berezow and Hank Campbell

In a time where we are so divided as a nation on every topic it is important to look back and realize that whichever side you are on has flaws and extremes. The "left" loves to pile fact checking onto the "right" about everything from climate change to school lunches. But what if some of these topics aren't so black and white? What if the "facts" the progressive left are leaning on so heavily are not quite as science based as the media and we all think? These are the questions this book asks and also attempts to answer and it is a very intriguing read.

While at times the authors gloss over topics and simplify there are some pretty strong points made that everyone should read. The main idea remains however, that science doesn't care about your political leanings. It doesn't care if you believe something to be true of just have a squicky feeling about things like GMOs or big pharma. I want to point out that this book is not an attack on the poli…

American Gods by Neil Gaiman

I do not remember who recommended this book to me but when I heard about it I instantly wanted to read it. The gods are real? They're all going to all fight? HELL YES! Sounds awesome! Unfortunately, at least for me, most of the actual story was far less interesting (but keep reading).

We follow the a man named Shadow as he fulfill his promise to help and mysterious man named Mr. Wednesday. Along the way he meets some very interesting characters and finds himself in some interesting and precarious positions. I put this book down and picked it back up maybe 4 times before I could finish it. Now, this isn't to say it was bad, far from it. Neil Gaiman's writing is fantastic, the characters are interesting and their interactions are just as authentic and original as the story itself. The problem for me was that parts of the story seemed disjointed and far removed from the actual plot. It is almost like these asides are pigeonholed into the story more for the sake of their inclu…

Nights Master by Tanith Lee

This was one of the first books fiction I actually physically read cover to cover. It is a wonderful adventure that follows a demon named Azhrarn. This book is broken into three parts each telling a different but very loosely connected story about his dealings with humans in the world.

At times complex but always fascinating and rich this story sucked me in and I could not put it down. If you like fantasy fiction I highly recommend this book!

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Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueine Carey

Kushiel's Dart is the first book in Jacqueine Carey's Kushiel's Legacy series. There are 9 books in totals and all take place in a wonderfully imagined fetishistic alternate medieval history. Here Carey shares a world where the people of Terre d'Ange (what would be France in our world) follow a simple tenet, "Love As Thou Wilt". This simple message comes from the teachings of Ellua, the son of Yeshua (God). It is told that he turned his back on his father to live a life of love and piece on Earth and was followed by eight angels, each of whom embody a human quality including knowledge, love, healing, and pride as well as punishment and sexual desires. As you might have guessed these last two play heavily into the plot ;)

In this book we follow the main protagonist Ph├Ędre begining with her coming to age and the first of her many adventures. Initially sold as a child into the service of Naamah, whose worshipers perform religious prostitution, she was thought to…

World War Z by Max Brooks

I saw the movie based on this book staring Brad Pitt in the theater when it came out and liked it well enough. I do believe the book is way better but will say to me tells a very different story. It was recommended that I read this when I was talking to a friend about The Walking Dead.

I will start out by saying that what this book is does best is it takes a completely implausible theme (zombies) and tells a story using 100% plausible personal stories as well as descriptions of economic and political fallout that you read and thing "hmm... yeah, that could actually happen". This is impressive given the basic underlying story and works on almost every level. Yes, there are a lot of unanswered questions and some of the story forces the reader to suspend a bit of belief in logic but overall the story is solid and it is a great read.

What I won't do is really talk to much else about the differences between the book and movie because they really only share the zombie war the…

Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity By Julia Serano

I wrote this book review almost seven years ago on my other blog Silly Trans Woman but I find myself still suggesting this book to others. In fact after just repurchasing it about a month ago I have already lent it out again! Very few books have left such a lasting impression on my thoughts on gender, feminism and identity. Below is my original review:

This book is a mind opening and thought provoking read that is great for just about anyone. Many of Ms. Serano's arguments on how society views femininity and the resulting opinions of what it means to identify as female (especially for transsexuals) are well thought out and based on sound reasoning. I found myself reexamining many of my very own ideas about who I am and how others preserve me.

I recommend this book not only to transsexuals, but just about anyone who wants a fresh perspective on how our culture views and reacts to differences in gender expression.

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