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Media diet for June 2018

Books

Swearing Off Stars — Danielle Wong

Started off alright, but quickly telegraphed to an all-to-common “I can’t really be with you until it’s too late” lesbian novel. I also kept thinking an editor had asked her to just add tons of adjectives, willy-nilly. It was an odd read, and the time-jumps didn’t help. If you can write a lesbian romance in 2017, why would you lean so hard on tropes of one woman dying? Super annoying. It was a pretty quick read at least. Read for a lesbian book club.

Little Fish — Casey Plett

Outstanding and devastating. This is a book full of people I’ve known,

slept with, and smiled at across the room. Family is a tenuous thing, and Little Fish finds space for it throughout. I’m not sure what I would’ve made with this years ago, but now, it’s a sad and good ache. I hope Casey keeps writing, and sharing her work with us for years to come. I read this in one go, and it was a wild ride that had me laughing and crying.

Paprika — Yasutaka Tsutsui

A fantastically bizarre story of science, dreams, desire, and the smallness of men. I’d seen the anime adapted from this book years ago, so I had some predisposition towards envisioning characters a certain way, but this book goes to way different places than I remember the movie going. I liked this quite a bit, save for the weird shit with sexual assault. Like many books written by a guy, it shows.

Infidel — Kameron Hurley

Really loving this series about a tough AF bounty hunter lady named Nyx. The world-building is pretty interesting, and the story moves forward at a pretty good clip. All-told, this is a fun sci-fi action novel.

Movies

Solo

This was probably tied with Last Jedi for my least favorite of the new Star Wars, but I liked it better than pretty much any of the old or prequel ones. It was fun, had a few rad women, and didn’t go overboard on “remember this?” fanservice. I laughed a few times, and I’m hoping they make sequels.

Appropriate Behavior

This was a fun movie about being a Persian Bisexual woman in NYC. Shirin goes through a major breakup, then struggles to date, and heal, while dealing with a family she doesn’t think will understand her queerness, and the strange world of the NYC queer and poly scene. I laughed out loud during a lot of this, even as I scratched my head at the confusing references to trans guys—like, why are they a joke? Overall, I dug this movie, and hope the director/writer Desiree makes more films soon.

Red Sparrow

I will never believe for one second that the protagonist would fall for Joel Edgerton’s bland spyman. For some reason, I expected this movie to be set during the cold war, but instead it’s vaguely now. This had more sexual assault than I expected too, which is a fucking bummer. The saving grace in this film is that by and large Jennifer Lawrence kills or beats all the men in the movie. I can only hope she gets cast in more movies where she doesn’t have to participate in misogynist porn first.

Unlocked

I’m a sucker for middling spy movies, and Noomi Rapace, so I now own this film. It wasn’t great, but it was fun, and dammit, sometimes that’s all I need. TIL Michael Douglas is still around.

xx

Terrible title unless everyone involved had to get a karyotype test to be involved. Most of the horror was related to having kids, which meant this movie hit me hard, because kids are the worst and deeply frightening on the best days.

Ocean’s 8

All. Ladies. Heist. A+. I hope everyone involved in this comes out as gay. Points for literally every outfit, and double points for Rhianna’s devil-may-care overalls, and Cate Blanchett’s Carol-as-a-Timelord character.

Oh Lucy!

This movie ruled! The world feels pretty rough these days, and this movie doesn’t shy away from difficult topics, but the overarching feeling of Oh Lucy is a kind and happy one. It was also cool seeing an actor I’ve watched in lots of Kiyoshi Kurasawa films show up in a very rad role.

brook is a noted sapphist who lives in a cave with her cat snorri. she loves travel, food, and satan.