Added to Wishlist
- Headstrong: 52 Women Who Changed Science – and the World – Rachel Swaby. Yes! Yes, yes, yes, yes!
- Outriders – Jay Posey. I have a weakness for military sci-fi and I blame Stargate.
- The Lustre of Lost Things – Sophie Chen Keller. I also have a weakness for baking in books, especially if that baking is somehow magical.
- The Alice Network – Kate Quinn. Such an underwhelming cover but this is about female spies and it sounds like an amazing read.
- Shall I Be A Poet Instead? – Lianne M. Bernardo. How can I resist reading Lianne’s debut poetry collection?
- Radiance – Catherynne M. Valente. Described as ‘decopunk pulp SF alt-history space opera’ *cries*
- Too Loud a Solitude – Bohumil Hrabal. A lone man does what he can to save books from intellectual purges.
- Devil’s Call – J. Danielle Dorn. Another one with an underwhelming cover that sounds really freaking good.
Articles of Note
- Check out the best LGBTQIA Comics With This Year’s Prism Award Nominations. I didn’t realise that Mariko Tamaki was writing Supergirl!
- Taco Bell Set To Open First Scottish Branch in Glasgow. PLEASE let this be true! And if it is true, please don’t let it be the let down that root beer was.
- DCU Names Three Buildings After Inspiring Women Scientists. Yaass! Visibility is key to acceptance.
- Squirrel Girl Found: New Warriors Announces Milana Vayntrub as the Unbeatable Heroine. It’s really happening!
- 13 Times Andy Murray Spoke Out Against Sexism. Fuck. Yes.
- Grilled Pork Chops with Pear and Ginger Sauce. Colour me intrigued.
- 14 Fruity Slab Pies That’ll Feed an Army at Your Next Cookout. I’ve never had a ‘cookout’ in my life but that’s not going to stop me trying some of these pies!
- 7 Chicken Marinade Recipes You Can Freeze. I’ve never been particularly inventive when it comes to marinades so this post looks super handy.
- Rhubarb and Ginger Gin. I need this in my life.
- Strawberry Gin Sorbet. With bonus instructions on how to turn it into a cocktail!
Watching: Anne with an E and Anne of Green Gables (2016)
As a massive fan of L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables series, I was delighted to discover that there were two new adaptations. Anne with an E (titled Anne in Canada) has been available on Netflix for a while now but I’ve been saving it for a time I knew I’d be able to watch the whole thing interrupted, which finally happened yesterday. To look at, Anne with an E is gorgeous and the casting is spot on, with Anne and Rachel Lynde being particularly well cast. The opening credits, which use a song by The Tragically Hip (!), are beautiful and not what I expected at all. From the start, this series is much darker in tone that the 1985 adaptation – Anne’s story has always been a dark one. The terrible things that happened to her before coming to Green Gables are right there in the text – but it’s still full of warmth and humour and joy. When it does things right, it does them really, really right so I spent the majority of the first episode absolutely loving the whole thing (I cried, I admit it) and then it all starts to go wrong when Marilla accuses Anne of stealing her brooch and sends her back to the orphanage. Wait, what?? This is a massive departure from the text, and one that seems to exist to create a sense of peril and danger in the story. And then, as if that’s not bad enough, Marilla never really apologises. Scenes that didn’t exist in the books come thick and fast after that, all of them dark, dark, dark and bad. Anne knows about sex now, and the inhabitants of Avonlea are all total arseholes. Anne changes her name to Shirley-Cuthbert (NOPE!) and Gilbert takes off to work on the docks. Plus there are a lot of overtly feminist moments, some of which work and some which seem to reach through your television screen to slap you about a bit. I’m a feminist, Anne Shirley is certainly a feminist, and the women of L.M. Montgomery’s world are all feminists in their own ways. But apparently the type of feminism that exists in the books isn’t quite enough for the 21st Century, so things get ramped up considerably and in ways that all seem to add to the dark, dark, darkness of what’s going on. I’m not against reimagining Anne of Green Gables for a modern audience, but by inserting peril that didn’t exist in the books to further a ‘gritty’ tone, the programme loses much of the charm that is an essential part of the appeal of the books. You guys, I wanted to love this so bad but it made so many changes for no reason!!
Well, I thought naively, the other adaptation can’t be as frustrating as Anne with an E, and in a way I was right. It wasn’t frustrating, it was straight-up terrible. From the opening scenes with a positively chatty Matthew as played by Martin Sheen (possibly the worst casting choice they could have made), to the first appearance of Anne with red hair straight from a bottle and face full of make-up, this version is hopeless. Anne lacks charm, Marilla lacks warmth, Gilbert needs a slap and Diana, well, Diana’s alright. Apparently there are two more parts of this, but luckily I can’t find them anywhere on the internet so I can spare myself the horror.