Discount Armageddon

Discount Armageddon is the first book of Seanan McGuire’s InCryptid series, and it’s basically what Dresden Files would be if it weren’t terribly written by a terrible person. It’s cheesy pulp urban fantasy, but it’s also sharp-witted and self-aware, and stars a competent protagonist whose whole MO is that she’s not a murderous psycho. If I were in a better way I’d really want to do a Let’s Read of it, because it’s such a great counterexample of fluff done well. I honestly loved it; it was tightly written, the complete opposite of high art, and lots of fun.

Incidentally, the old guy at the register at the Harvard COOP gave me a shitfuckton of condescension for buying this book while talking to my husband about how Clearly Learned he was for his purchase, and fuck that guy.

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The Other Pokeauthors, Part 79

“But what truly amuses me is that the people on the Capitalization-Thread do not realize that you are actually the troll, the one who is attempting to rile them up over a petty argument, and seem to be succeeding, unfortunately. But that will not work for everyone, and sooner or later you run into a wall headfirst. You must have been lucky for the past 16 years on this site, nothing less, nothing more.

Just know this. Your attempts to toy with other authors will come back to haunt you, for even if you had written a thousand stories, it would negligible compared the great number already on this site, the ones written by the general populace. Banning others is not a solution, and neither is it an option one can use in repetition. Because sooner or later, you’ll run out of people to ban.”

Why are we getting so many people who have apparently never seen a real troll before?

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Zahrah the Windseeker

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Continuing my adventures through Nnedi Okorafor’s catalogue, Zahrah the Windseeker is Okorafor’s other, earlier kids’ book, and I thought it was really great. It has a kind of Alice-in-Wonderland vibe to it, but without the drugs, if that’s possible. It’s set in a fantasy world where all technology is based on plants, and the titular Zahrah has to journey into the Forbidden Greeny Forest to save her best friend.

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Knights in the Nightmare

oh hai

Knights in the Nightmare is the third entry in the Dept. Heaven series, although in-universe it’s chronologically second and IRL it’s titled ‘IV’ because who the fuck knows (wiki does, don’t tell me about how everyone knows I too know).

KitN (kitten?) is different from the previous two games, Riviera and Yggdra Union, in a few important ways. First, it’s a much more conceptual game, with the story told so far out of of chronological order there’s no way to simply explain it. Second, it’s nihilistic as fuck, where the other two were a bit more nuanced and had more a ‘people are flawed but will overcome’ kind of stance. I don’t think it’s grimdark or even unrealistic, but it’s very bleak, and as a result (I thought) philosophically weaker. It’s also neither turn-based like Riviera or a tRPG like Yggdra, but something else entirely unlike anything I’ve ever seen before.

I still really liked it overall, but unlike the other two it’s not something I’d rec generally for people, or even for people who like jRPGs. You really will get the most out of it if you’re specifically looking for a kind of out-there experience.

Spoilers inside; ye be warned.

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The Other Pokeauthors, Part 77

“I suggest going to a library somewhere around you and finding the Warrior cats and Ranger’s Apprentice series to read. Those will help you with grasping many different forms of emotion and writing, and possibly help you to grow beyond what you currently are.”

(It’s funny because I actually have read Warrior Cats and it is… not good.)

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