A Links Roundup But Not Really

using this gif at every oppurtunity
   I was going to do a round up of things here on the World Wide Web, but it was just so I could link to two albums I've been listening to pretty much non-stop (I can't say "non-stop" anymore without thinking of Hamilton, THANKS, LIN-MANUEL). So instead of finding some interesting reads for you I am just going to leave you with these two albums.

   The first album is Purpose and YES, I am 100% on the Bieber Fever train AND I'M NOT EVEN SORRY ABOUT IT. This album is full of "face-melting bangers" as was written in that amazing interview which I hope you have read/will read (HERE is the link for it). This album has Something For Everyone and I hope you give it a chance, if you somehow haven't heard it already.

   Secondly I have on offer an album which...is not for everyone. Ex Deo is a bonkers metal band that decided to make a concept album about Emperor Caligula, and it is amazing. It's called Caligvla and the first track, I, Caligvla is catchy as hell, which is fairly unusual for metal (I've been wandering around my house singing "I, CALIGVLA, AM GOD MADE OF FLESH, THY ROPE AROUND THY NECK, THIS IS THE WILL OF THE GODS" and "WHO AM I BUT THE TRUE FACE OF ROOOOME"). Caligula the man was a bad dude but this album is dope. I'd say it's fairly accessible, as far as metal goes.

My Boyfriend Barfed in My Handbag / Jolie Kerr

   This book is about cleaning and I am totes smitten with it. Who knew. My Boyfriend Barfed in My Handbag...And Other Things You Can't Ask Martha came into my life via the Get Booked podcast and promptly used some dish soap mixed with warm water to wash away my reading slump (thank you for your cure suggestions, you lovely people) and by the time I was on page 8 (literally) I had given it am emphatic five stars, with some of my enthusiasm drained by the end but only because this book seems overtly aimed at het/cis women who are, ostensibly, in charge of cleaning (why you gotta be like that, Kerr). HOWEVER, that does not detract from the SHEER USEFULNESS of this book, I used it THIS VERY MORNING to help me clean something.

   This is a book that makes liberal use of all-caps and exclamation marks and drrrrrrragged out words and is exceedingly self-aware. Marie Kondo is probably a genius but probably also crazy. Jolie Kerr is also probably a genius and knows that she can come off a bit bonkers. These two women (along with Gretchen Rubin, if I ever actually manage to finish a book of hers instead of starting it and saying "yesssss" and then falling off the wagon a third of the way through) are going to whip my life into shape, I can feel it.

   This book has it all, including a well-laid-out index which you can use in case of emergency. I got this book from the library but I'm going to buy a copy to keep on hand (and I'm in the midst of a serious possessions-purge so that is SAYING SOMETHING).

   Jolie Kerr also has a column!


Treasure Island!!! / Sara Levine

   If you look at the Goodreads page for this book, there are a lot of complaints about how the protagonist is just a straight-up awful person and ugh how can you read something with such an unlikeable main character? You know what? She really is awful and this book is so good. And if she wasn't awful, where would the story be? NOWHERE, that's where.

   SO, she (I am like 99% sure she remains nameless throughout the book) has a dead-end job and is generally malcontent and ends up reading Treasure Island instead of returning it to the library for her sister, like she said she would. Please note that this is the first in a series of escalating events showing that our heroine has a selfish disdain for the feelings of others (plus conceit and arrogance in spades).

   After reading Treasure Island and deciding that it has Changed! Her! Life! she swears to live by what she deems are the book's Core Values: boldness, resolution, independence, and horn-blowing. She stuffs this up so spectacularly badly. Instead of bold she is brutal, instead of independent she quickly becomes practically parasitic, instead of resolute she's aimless, although I guess she grabs onto horn-blowing pretty well. She spends the book generally messing up the lives of the people (and birds) around her, and convincing herself that it is they, not she, who are in the wrong.

   This book is absurd and darkly funny. It's ideal for reading when you're feeling directionless. It has this super earnest, heartfelt moment at the end and it doesn't feel forced. Even this person who is so awful to her boyfriend, her friends, her sister, her parents, her boss, and basically everyone else in her life has a chance to make herself better and while it takes a LOT to get to get to the point where you think that she has a chance to be okay, she still has a chance. A good read. Plus it has three exclamation points in the title, how can you go wrong?


"I'll drive"

   LO, THE MOVIES from the last post.
  • Mad Max
  • Mad Max: Road Warrior
  • Mockingjay Part One
  • Stranger Than Fiction
  • Cowboys & Aliens
   I've watched Mad Max: Fury Road enough that I decided I needed to understand where it came from, and thus was born my quest to watch all of the Mad Max movies. Now all we have left to watch is Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome and if it is as much of a step upward/forward as Road Warrior is from Mad Max, I will be very pleased. Mad Max feels like a movie a highschool student would make. It's weird. It's nearly plot-less. It has a very optimistic view of a post-apocalyptic world (there are hospitals? and a fairly un-corrupt police force?). Road Warrior sets Max up as essentially a tertiary character who stumbles on an already-unfolding conflict, and is pretty clearly the visual ancestor of Fury Road. I am enjoying these movies! And now I can look forward to seeing Tina Turner in Beyond Thunderdome and then I'll have a complete idea of the Mad Max story and eventually I'll shave my head and then pretend it isn't because Furiosa is so fantastic.

   SPEAKING OF movies that make me want to change my hair, Natalie Dormer is great in Mockingjay. I still haven't seen the second part, I'm interested to see how they do it. The book wasn't as good as the first two, but was still enjoyable, but this movie is probably on par with the other ones. It's quite good. I don't have much to say about it? These movies do well with representation.

   Stranger Than Fiction was a bit odd but ultimately I enjoyed it! Whoever designed the interiors did really well! It made me think of Good Will Hunting, which is a good flick!


   As a last note, I've rediscovered Polyvore and I've been making some sets inspired by the movies I watch and you can take a gander at them if you want. I like them, maybe you will. Here is a link!


someone help me out of this reading slump before I perish

existential doubt
   Aaaaaaagh, FRIENDS, I have barely read lately. What do you read when you're barely reading? Do you try to break out of the slump or do you just roll with it? HELP ME PLZ. Also slumping? My desire to blog. What gives. I would like to two-hand punch this slump in the chest.

   I usually turn to comics when I want to break out of a slump, but even they are failing me this time. Maybe I need to read a really long comic? Even audiobooks have been feeling like too much effort, but I am currently forcing myself to listen to Better Than Before / Gretchen Rubin, because I want Gretchen Rubin to improve my life.

   HELP ME. What are some slump-busting things I can read/do?

bring my book friends back


January's Reading

   January was a bit of an odd month for me, but now it is February so let's just look back on what I read. It isn't much, unfortunately.
  • World War Z / Max Brooks: A+++++++, read this book asap. So good. 
  • Saga, v. 5 / Brian K/ Vaughan, Fiona Staples: I missed meeting Fiona Staples by mere hours, but at least I have a signed copy of this book, which is a small consolation. Her work elevates this book when the story is somewhat lacking. This volume felt in-between-y. 
  • Bleak House / Charles Dickens: FINALLY I am done reading this book. It took me so long but it was so good so I suppose I can't complain. I was in a bit of a book hangover for a week or so after finishing it, which I busted out of by reading...
  • Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant / Tony Cliff: so fun. Much adventure. Wow. Flying boats. 
   January was movie-heavy and reading-light, hopefully February will reverse that pattern. I now have Media Relations, Geography of the Canadian North, the Television Age, and Gender and Consumer Culture Since 1700 to think about, which will take up a good deal of my movie-watching time. This is my last semester and I am so excited to be finished with this degree, even though it only means two more years of school.

   I also spent January remembering my delight in making playlists, so for your listening pleasure: some Bowie faves, some Monday morning metal, and the songs I have been listing to on repeat lately.

   Here's looking at you, February.