> Queer Books Please: July 2013

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Episode 27 - Sporting romances

Mary again attempts a quickie episode--reviews of two romance novels in the wide world of sports. RUNNING WITH THE WIND by Nell Stark and BEAUTIFUL GAME by Kate Christie.

Direct download.

Star Caesar (Possimiste) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0

Monday, July 22, 2013

What would your favorite television lesbian read?



Willow Rosenberg from Buffy The Vampire Slayer reads TIPPING THE VELVET by Sarah Waters to try and maintain her good girl reputation. 

Willow: It's historical fiction! It's educational! ..... it's kinda sexy...

Callie and Arizona from Grey's Anatomy enjoy the medical drama and the sexy inspiration that comes from Radclyffe's romance novels.

Callie: So who gets to be the sexy, dominate butch with a tortured past and who gets to be the sassy femme who wins her heart? 
Arizona: Why don't you pick tonight!


Shane from The L Word is briefly distracted from chasing girls by the captivating world of ADAPTATION by Malinda Lo.

Shane: Yeah it's a YA book, but there's fucking aliens and this Amber chick is really fucking hot. It's awesome. Stop bothering me and let me read. 

Cosima from Orphan Black enjoys a science fiction series that reminds her of her own increasingly complicated  life.

Cosima: In this world, the clones are actually engineered to be homosexual to prevent natural reproduction! They also tend to pair up with clones that share their genetic material.... maybe I won't tell the others about this series....

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Episode 26 - Sports

Lesbians and sports go together like mixy things. Reviews/recommendations of THE SEA OF LIGHT by Jenifer Levin, SWEAT by Lucy Jane Bledsoe, SUDDEN DEATH by Rita Mae Brown, DAMN STRAIGHT by Elizabeth Sims, plus a round up of some of the romance titles that feature sports. Plus some personal stories from me for your enjoyment and my mild embarrassment.

Download or listen below the cut. The show is also always available on iTunes.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Episode 25 - Desert Hearts and Lying Teens

Talkin' DESERT HEARTS versus DESERT OF THE HEART. Plus teen books with unreliable narrators. Good stuff this week! Listen below the cut, download the MP3 file directly, or download/subscribe via iTunes.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Reviewing on Goodreads

I've been on Goodreads for a while primarily using it as a book finder and catalog of books I've read and books I might want to read. It's not something I've used religiously--I rarely find any consistent  success with these sorts of apps and sites that are designed to organize your life, instead using them half-heartedly until I get bored.

But it has occurred to me that writing some reviews on Goodreads might be a good project for a couple reasons.

1. It will hone my reviewing skills for the podcast AND my writing skills for the blog.

2. If I'm writing reviews that people find entertaining and useful, it might draw some new listeners to the podcast.

3. Reviewing on a site like Goodreads should be useful for both authors who want exposure for their work and readers who are looking for their next read.

That third point is the one that I find most interesting and most challenging as I start to write reviews. Because a review written as a supportive gesture to an author might conceivably read very differently than a review written only with a potential reader in mind. The best rule I've been able to come up with as I write is to try and be as fair as possible. That means giving the author the benefit of the doubt if there's something that doesn't work for me, but also not overselling something to readers who are looking for an honest take on something.

I also don't want to write a boring review, which means there is sometimes an urge to get a little snarky to keep things interesting--that in particular strikes me as not particularly fair to the author. In a podcast, my tone can help soften criticisms. When I talk about romance novels, for example, I will often (I think, I try!) slip into a voice of exasperated fondness for some of the conventions of the genre. I don't know if my writing is deft enough to express my complicated feelings for some of the flaws and failures that occur in generally enjoyable books.

Never the less, I will try! Check out what I have reviewed so far here. I've attempted to friend anyone I'm following on twitter. If that didn't work for some reason, friend me!

Let me know how you approach your reviews on sites like Goodreads and amazon. Are you reviewing as a show of support for the author or a way to help fellow readers? Or both? If you do both, do you risk satisfying neither?

Friday, July 5, 2013

Episode 24 - Looking for mojo

Mary has been in a bit of a slump with her reading, and talks about different approaches to kickstart your reading mojo. Plus she answers a couple questions from twitter and discusses the new ABC family show The Fosters. Watch this blog for an update on her plan to take over (or quietly wander into) the reviewing scene at goodreads.com

You can subscribe on itunes, or listen or download below the cut.