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May. 3rd, 2016 @ 01:45 pm Books and TV
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A Dangerous Energy, by John Whitbourne

Recommended via cjwatson iirc. An alternate history where magic exists, but is subsumed into a practical/academic discipline by the catholic church, from which England never successfully split. I think it's set now, but the politics and technology feel a way before that?

I love stories about the study of thaumaturgy. The main character grows up into quite a sociopathic man, but the journey of his researches, his friends, his sins is very interesting.

Lamentably, stories about the nature of the soul/magic/afterlife are doomed to be disappointing in the end when it is not ultimately revealed; this does better than most.

We are all completely beside ourselves, by Karen Joy Fowler

See woodpijn's brief review here: http://woodpijn.livejournal.com/104297.html

The protagonist is now at university, but lost touch with her sister and her brother when she was about five, and isn't sure which of her memories of what happened are accurate. But it's not deliberate abuse, nor deliberately false memories, it all arose quite naturally out of what actually happened.

And it doesn't dwell only on the negative, she fills in her life experiences at various points, and it's really interesting to hear how she grew up.

I don't have a lot to add, there's an important twist a quarter of the way through, which didn't feel contrived, but I don't want to talk about in case people want to read it.

Justice League Unlimited

This animated series is a pretty good introduction to many of the DC heroes. Especially the 3rd episode where Superman, Batman, Wonderwoman and Green Lantern are turned into younger versions of themselves.

It kind of annoyed me by being 80% really good messages, but kind of annoying in the remainder. Message of "give peace a chance, don't fight for no reason" is good. Portraying anonymous eastern-european countries as prone to fighting for no reason until american heros help them, maybe problematic. Having multiple prominent female characters treated as equal, good. Having them all have lots of cleavage, maybe problematic. etc.

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