White people, do not do this

21 Jan

This past weekend, that hateful “March for Life,” wherein right wing organizations and schools bus people in to DC to march for the “right” of men to control the lives of anyone born with an uterus, took place concurrently with the Indigenous Peoples March.

One of the schools that sent teens and chaperones to march this year was Covington Catholic High School, an all-male private school in Kentucky. There are long and terrible threads on twitter¹ with personal stories of survivors from both the school and the all-girls school across the street, which Covington assholes have nicknamed “whore school.” Charming boys, no?

At one point, a fairly large group of kids from Covington was facing off with four older members of another hate group, the Black Hebrew Israelites, and things were tense and likely heading to violence, when Omaha Elder Nathan Phillips, on his way to closing the Indigenous Peoples March at the Lincoln Memorial, intervened, placing himself between the two groups–and becoming the target of the white kids’ ire, once they were deprived of their original target.

There is video² and a plethora of articles about this harassment. There are interviews with witnesses AND with Nathan Phillips. Go google them.

There are also people defending the “boys” or rather, specifically, the white male teen wearing a MAGA hat, smirking with hateful disdain to the face of an elderly Native man.

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A Study in Scandal, by Caroline Linden

16 Jan

I am trying to slip this one under the wire, see if I can start the year right.

I got this novella, in print, at RWA National Conference, in July 2017, so it was totally in the humongous, overwhelming, print TBR Cordillera of Doom, and therefore it qualifies wonderfully for SuperWendy’s TBR Challenge 2019, January edition. Yay!

Also, I’m pathetically grateful January’s theme is shorts, because between life and the reading slump from hell, I don’t know I would have even attempted anything longer.

“A Study in Scandal” by Caroline Linden

While this is one of the later stories in the Scandals series, I wasn’t lost, despite not having read any of the other stories.¹ There was a bit of filling in some of the series’ backstory during the first couple of pages, but it was easy enough to follow.

I did have other problems with the story, but we’ll get to that. First, the back cover blurb:
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A house painted like a rainbow

16 Nov

A bit over five years ago, I wrote a post on Karen Knows Best, about Equality House, in Topeka, Kansas.

This past week, someone else wrote a beautiful story about its meaning to him and the community and the state–and what it can mean for all of us. Continue reading

Little girls grow up.

14 Nov

In January this year (yes, that’s like a century ago, but bear with me), over 160 women, teens and girls came forward to confront Larry Nassar, who for DECADES had abused them, while being shielded by the organization that should have protected all those young girls from becoming teens and adult women marked by sexual abuse.

One of those speaking was Kyle Stephens, who said (in part):

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A loving god

30 Oct

(I would advise any religious/devout readers to skip this one)

Today, as I was driving home from work, letting the mind wander while waiting for the traffic light to change, I noticed something about the car tags in this here hellhole that I hadn’t noticed before. You have the state in smallish letters, the the tag number in LARGE letters, then you have…”IN GOD WE TRUST” in smaller capital letters.

And I realized why I don’t.

Trust in god, that is.

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Stormy Nights, by Jules Jones and Stormy Duffy

17 May

There really is no rhyme or reason why books languish in my physical and digital TBR Cordilleras of Doom.

Case in point: it had been a long while since I read anything by Jules Jones, though what I have read, I have liked, and there are a number of her works in my digital TBR pile.

So why I haven’t read more of her stuff? (I got nothing¹)

At any rate, back in August 2017, Ms Jones very kindly sent me a copy of this anthology for review. And while my reading has been iffy at best for a long time now, I read all nine stories in the book in one sitting just a few days after that.

Sadly, then the “can’t write to save my life” curse struck, fueled by current events, and here we are now, nine months later. ::guilty wince::

Warning: there is explicit sex and some light kink in all of these. If that’s not your thing, stop here. None of these are genre romance stories, with HEA/HFN, though all are full of hope and joy. Also, Jules Jones and Storm Duffy are two writing facets of the same author.

Stormy Nights, by Jules Jones and Stormy Duffy

This is a collection of nine short stories of varying lengths and genres; some are very romantic, some are more short erotic vignettes than stories, and one is an incredibly poignant fantasy with very strong romantic elements. There are merpeople, and fae, and just plain contemporaries.

In competition for the shortest blurb EVER:

Sex and love, lies and truth, shades in between. Happy endings and might-have-beens. Nine tales of these things between men.

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Someone to Love, by Mary Balogh

16 May

This is my (very) late entry in SuperWendy’s TBR Challenge for February. As with my January read, I actually managed to read the book on time¹ but I just haven’t been able to string more than a couple of sentences together for months.

Ah well, c’est la vie, non?

Warning: otherization/fetishization of the one Asian character in the novel.

Someone to Love, by Mary Balogh

This is the first novel in a series about the family of the late Earl of Riverdale, and how his death–and the secrets he kept until then–have affected their fortunes and their very lives. I found the premise very intriguing and read the book quickly and with general enjoyment.

While we are introduced to a rather large cast of characters (I had to check the family tree a couple of times during the first few chapters), as the author is setting up a series of books, the story moves along smoothly, at a sustained pace, to the last chapter or so.

But more on that below. Here, have a blurb:
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