Tag Archives: science fiction

Underrated Ladies! Tag

I’m in one of those pissed at the world moods in which getting anything productive accomplished is a struggle. But somehow, it makes it the best time to catch up on at least one tag that a lovely blogger was kind enough to tag me in. I could use a little feminine appreciation to brighten my day so here we go ladies and gents:

The very awesome blog Livid Lightning is getting my ping back since she introduced me to this tag. 😀

Rules (I will try to follow, but no one’s the boss of me on my blog)

  • PingBack to Kate at Melting Pots and Other Calamities and pingback to a post of hers (I guess she’s the creator of this tag thingy? Good for her!)
  • Answer the questions (That’s the point of these tags thingys, no? See below!)
  • Choose female characters from books, movies, TV, anime, webtoons, etc. (I’ll try my best)
  • Tag as many people (We’ll see…)
  • Have fun! (No doubt)

Questions:

Name a heroine you like but whom you feel is always overshadowed by the male characters in the story.

Ka-Poel from the Powder Mage trilogy. She’s from a tribe and is essentially Taniel’s personal spotter and later servant but she’s so much more than that. She’s a force of her own with her own magic and tricks up her sleeve. She’s clever and feisty and never lets Taniel down.

For that matter, name a heroine whom you feel is always overshadowed by the other female characters in the story.

Peryn’s little monster sister. That’s right, she’s over shadowed enough that I don’t remember her name. But she’s a great character, she gets some show time but I would have liked to see her even more throughout the series.

Name a character who had potential but was greatly underutilized in her story.

Constance Stapleton comes more into focus in this installment of the Golgotha series, however, I still think she’s being underutilized though it appears that may change in the future.

Name a female character who you either find better in her book than her movie, find better in her movie than her book, or whose portrayals you find equal.

Offred (June) from The Handmaid’s Tale is SO much better in the TV series than the book. In the book, she’s actually rather bland and kind of hard to read from her point of view. In the show, her rebellion, her determination and her overall character keep me coming back again and again.

Name a character who you want more backstory on.

Adelia Reyes, the femme fatale assassin. I just want more of this whole universe in general!

Name a character with traits you feel are sadly overlooked by everyone.

Arya Stark is the very first that comes to mind. Although, it’s usually her enemies that overlook her traits and they pay the ultimate price. But,I feel her own siblings overlook her quite often as well.

Name a morally grey character. (Villain or anti hero!)

The Morrigan from the Iron Druid Chronicles. She does some pretty shitty things but a lot of the time she also tips off Atticus to danger. Sometimes, she’s the danger.

A character you’re stunned isn’t more famous.

Stealing this answer from Lightning. Hail is such a bad ass heroine, but somehow I don’t know that many people who have read this series. It’s a high recommend from me if you enjoy space operas.

A character from a piece of fiction you’re amazed isn’t more famous.

Temple grew up during the time of zombies. She’s been on her own for most of it. This is a great story of a teenager surviving the zombie apocalypse on her own, fighting both the dead and the living.

Fantastic Female Bloggers

I’m going to try to tag people Lightning didn’t already tag so we can spread this fun out a bit more, but don’t feel obligated to participate by any means. This is meant to be fun!

Kristin Kraves Books

Books, Bones & Buffy

By Hook Or By Book

Meltotheany

ReadRantRock&Roll

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One Word Kill (Impossible Times #1) – Book Review

Published Date: May 1, 2019

Publishing Co.: 47North

Pages: 201

Goodreads Synopsis.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

A group of D&D playing friends in the 80s struggle with their friend’s deadly illness, life drama and a stranger from the future who needs them to steal something from a tech company.

It’s incredibly hard to review a 201 page book without revealing too much about the plot and any surprises.

I found the characters to be enjoyable, relatable and fully able to carry the story to the places it went. The story itself was fast paced, only slowing down when our MC was dealing with his chemotherapy. Here, I thought Lawrence excelled at how it must feel to be battling a deadly disease. My one is issue is the ease with which they break into a tech company, their only real obstacle something completely unrelated to their mission.

This would work well as a stand alone so I’m not entirely sure where Lawrence will head with books 2 & 3.

Nyxia (The Nyxia Triad #1) – Book Review

Published Date: September 12, 2017

Publishing Co.: Crown Books for Young Readers

Pages: 384

Goodreads Synopsis.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

It’s my theory that if you’ve ever said the words, “Money doesn’t buy happiness,” then you’ve never been dirt-fucking-poor. Money can buy a lot of happiness. Maybe not all the happiness in the world but trust me, it takes a major weight off of your shoulders and puts you on the path to achieving what does makes you happy.

The Babel Corporation has selected poor teenagers from all over the world to compete for amounts of money they never imagined by going first to space, then onto a new planet. The trick is, they have to survive rigorous training and score high enough through these competitions to make it down to Eden, a planet inhabited by lifeforms known as Adamites, who like human kids but not so much the adults. The teenagers may still encounter trouble while down on the planet, mining a precious resource called Nyxia, the real goal for Babel.

Emmett Atwater was plucked from Detroit. Poor, dying mother with shit insurance, and a father working himself to the bone trying to make ends meet while raising a son and being the support of an ailing wife. When Emmett is offered a chance to make all right for his family, he doesn’t hesitate. All his other competitors are enemies, standing in the way of his goal. Until, a couple sneak behind his wall and make themselves friends instead of only competition.

Almost all of the kids know that Babel Corporation is much more sinister than their outward appearances, but with that kind of money and healthcare for family on the line, you can over look a lot.

This was a fair start to a YA science fiction trilogy. I think the part that will interest me the most will come in book two. Although, I’m not running off to pick up the next book. Time will tell if I continue the series.

The Black Lung Captain (Tales of the Ketty Jay #2) – Book Review

Published Date: July 29, 2010

Publishing Co.: Gollancz

Pages: 442

Goodreads Synopsis.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

I wish I could say that it took so long for me to read this book because life got in the way. Once, I did leave it at work over the weekend but honestly, I felt pretty unimpressed most of the way through.

The biggest problem? Captain Darian Frey. It took me almost ALL of the first book before I even began to like Frey, and then in this one, he just blew it all to shit. He is by far my least favorite character, which was unfortunate for me because he had the most point of view chapters. Why do I not like the down on his luck, rag tag captain? Well, long story short, he’s a misogynistic asshole.

Now, I’m sure you’re thinking; “Cupcakes, this is supposed to be light-hearted fun! I think you’re reading WAY too into this.” And you know, you are probably right. But here’s the thing, I am SO fucking over male protagonists that are womanizers and use women to get off, characterizing them as basically useless otherwise. It’s especially offensive with a loser captain such as Frey. Sure he’s good looking but he’s pretty bottom of the food chain when it comes to males. Yet he has deep thoughts such as;

There weren’t many women Frey respected, but Jez was one of them.”

Of course, he must go on to explain that this is largely because he barely thinks of Jez as a woman. He’s not sexually attracted to her therefore, she’s worthy of his respect.

Do not even get me started on his fucked relationship with Trinica. You know, the woman he knocked up and left at the alter, which led to her killing their unborn child and ultimately ending up as a concubine until she became the pirate queen. Yet, he thinks she should go back to being the way she was before he and the world broke her, so HE can be happy.

Other than all THAT shit, I enjoyed it. The world building is always cool and the rest of the crew are much better characters that I would love to read about until the cows come home. However, if I had to read another book mostly from Frey’s point of view and he doesn’t grow as a character, I might just chuck the book at the wall and quit the series.

Early Christmas Book Haul

Mr. Cupcakes & Machetes isn’t very good at holding out when it comes to giving presents. To be fair though, he had me pick out the books so it’s not like I didn’t already know what I was getting. I’ll consider myself lucky that I don’t have to wait to dig into one of these bad boys if I so choose. Bookoutlet.com was having a 30% off sale on Black Friday and I was drooling in front of the screen so he kindly said, “Buy all the books!”

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Sci Fi November 2018 in Review

Whew! It’s already December? How did that happen?? I hope everyone enjoyed NanoWrimo that participated! And if you didn’t get to the word count goal, you’re still a star because some progress in better than no progress and writing is hard! I dabbled myself a few years back and there’s always the hope that I’ll get inspired again.

Anywho, Science Fiction November! I think mine was pretty successful considering how busy I’ve been. I had hoped to convince Mr. Cupcakes & Machetes to watch some sci-fi TV shows together but that didn’t happen. We were fully involved in Netflix’s Mindhunter. (We’re always behind on the good things.) If you’re into True Crime, I highly recommend giving it a go.

Recap:

Parasite (Parasitology #1) – Book Review

After the Crown (The Indranan War #2) – Book Review

Foundation (Foundation #1) – Book Review

Gotham City Sirens Vol.3 Strange Fruit – Comic Review

Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse #1) – Book Review

Vox – Book Review

Did you participate in Sci-Fi month? If so, how did it go for you?

Vox – Book Review

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Published Date: August 21, 2018

Publishing Co.: Berkley

Pages: 336

Goodreads Synopsis.

Rating: 2 out of 5 stars

Whenever there is a novel about the subjugation of women, it almost always immediately draws comparisons to Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale. Once you actually read it however, the only commonality is the subjugation of women. Vox begins as an almost complete rip off of Atwood’s tale. Replace the same concepts with different names, slight variations here and there but add a wrist device that counts women’s words, subtract the handmaids andsplash on a massive helping of current society references and you have the major workings of Vox. If you’ve never read or watched The Handmaid’s Tale, you’ll probably be able to read it without much fuss.

I had a hard time finding much respect for the main character, Jean Mc-whatever, I’ve already forgotten. This is largely due to her cheating on her husband and this is probably a personal point of view preventing me from connecting. If you don’t love someone anymore, woman up and break it off. Cheating is weak. Now, you might be thinking, “But she has to depend on a man in this new society!” Sure, that’s true but she’s basically just runs from one man to another for protection anyway.

This was very closely going to be a one star read but the ending did drag me and keep me interested in how the story falls out. It was cleaned up fairly neatly but when I sit back and think about it, I wouldn’t really care whether the story had a good or bad ending for the characters. There are some important messages to society in this so it gets points for that but I was largely unimpressed.

Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse #1) – Book Review

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Published Date: June 2, 2011

Publishing Co.: Orbit

Pages: 561

Goodreads Synopsis.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Holy space battles, Batman!

If there is one thing this book wasn’t, it was boring. I felt like there was hardly a moment when something important wasn’t happening. Something was either getting blown up or about to get blown up and barely escaping. Not to mention the introduction of a bioweapon to change the entire game.

James Holden worked a small ice hauler until the day the crew he was on found an abandoned ship in the far reaches of the Belt. They learn the hard way that sometimes, you shouldn’t play with lost things that aren’t yours. It could just start an interplanetary war and when you’re the one that accidentally starts it, you feel obligated to help stop it.

Holden and crew race from situation to situation in attempts to set things right and save all of humanity. Helped along by a down-on-his-luck detective and a rebel organization, they just might be able to pull it off, if only they’re fast enough and smart enough. And since there is more than one book in the series, I’ll leave you to your own conclusions.

Or that might be a red herring.

You won’t know until you read the book.

This book was fantastic. I enjoyed all of the characters while also not being particularly drawn to anyone specific. I loved the non stop action. Somehow, I didn’t quite fall head over heels in love with it but I foresee future books changing that. I have the feeling that this series is going to go to the top of my favorite Science Fiction list.

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Gotham City Sirens Vol.3 Strange Fruit – Comic Review

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Published Date: August 23, 2011

Published By: DC Comics

Pages: 144

Goodreads Synopsis.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

A better volume than the last. We have aliens who try to best Ivy, Batman’s identity almost stolen from Selina, and Harley making a dangerous and deadly plan.

For the first time in this series, I very much look forward to the next edition.

Foundation (Foundation #1) – Book Review

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Published Date: 1951

Publishing Co.: Del Ray

Pages: 285

Goodreads Synopsis.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

When this began with the talk of mathematics and using it to predict the future, it almost lost me. Math has never been my subject, but luckily that part was short lived. There never came a point where I was absolutely hooked into the story but this is at the very minimum, one of the classics that I understand all the reasons why it is considered a classic. It still won’t be hopping on my favorite sci-fi list but it is one I would encourage other sci-fi fans to give a try. I like character driven stories and this is almost completely plot-driven and riddled with political intrigue.

The basis is that the Empire is going to fall in three hundred years and the scientists are attempting to save all possible knowledge on an unpopulated planet. The plan is to store the knowledge so that it is not forever lost and it can be redistributed to the galaxy. At least on the surface that’s the plan, in all actuality there is much more than just saving knowledge. There are mathematical projections and psychohistory theories about the challenges predicted to come and hidden messages to help the remaining humans of the empire along.

The story jumps from crisis to crisis in the first hundred years after the fall. Each crisis features a different character and details how they solve the problem presented to them.

I’m glad that I read it but I don’t think I’ll be continuing the series.

I did however end up with a copy of this from 1986 and had the gleeful pleasure of finding an old library card in the back from 1989.

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