Friday, April 1, 2011

Red Heart of Jade: Why Marjorie Liu is Significant

So, as I mentioned earlier, I am reading Marjorie Liu, I am on the third book of her Dirk and Steele novels.  Really, I think she needs help with names.  Not only do her characters have terrible names, so does the company that she has chosen for them to all work for (but I digress).  I am normally a very fast reader, but I have found it hard to just plow through this series.

I thought about stopping when I hit book three, until the location of her books caught my interest.  I think I shall have to read more.  It is fascinating to see stories set in Russia, Taiwan and Hong Kong.  I am really starting to feel the Asian influence in the stories, which is something I have not seen in other books.  I think this is a marker of what is possible in urban fantasy, when the stories are written by a WOC.  The love at first woo woo can get annoying, and in many places gets in the way of the story; however, I am no longer reading for the story, I am reading for the setting.  I think in the Red Heart of Jade she worked harder to make the romance a bit more plausible than in the first two books.

I really think she has the potential to step outside of the paranormal romance genre and move straight into traditional urban fantasy.  It is clear that she has a story tell and the dependency on romance is completely unnecessary.  It’s almost like she is afraid to just create one character as a protagonist and follow the story all the way through.  Behind all of the l lurve you, there is a story buried there, and if she would just focus on that, people would not be tempted to skip entire sections of the book.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Fangs for the Fantasy Podcast - Episode 8

This week we discuss Being Human (US), Twilight, The Hollows by Kim Harrison, Charlaine Harris' Southern Vampire Series, Christopher Moore and Marjorie Liu's Dirke & Steel We also examine the difference between Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy and also we discuss how "light" leisure is not taken seriously despite its fails.