Books, Books

I read The Ballad of Black Tom last night and when I finished it, I just said, “God damn.”

Whew, it’s…not just good. It’s…I don’t quite know how to say it. It’s perfectly realized. It’s like a beautiful egg of completeness and unwasted space. It’s the tragedy to Lovecraft Country‘s comedy, but reading them both so close together is really interesting.

I’m also a little way into The Geek Feminist Revolution and I just have to say that I spent some time earlier this week stumbling accidentally across opinions of this book–that the pieces in it weren’t real essays, not essays like this dude teaches his students to write; or that it’s filled with untruths about the history of genre fiction and women’s place in it; or whatever. The thing is that, as I’m reading, I find myself laughing at those opinions.

Like, you know, it’s one thing to not like a book. I can see why you might not like this book. Some people have been lumping it together with Shrill, but Shrill is a pitcher of lemonade and a sunny backyard where someone inducts you into a secret society of women who’ve run out of shits to give. The Geek Feminist Revolution is a dunk tank filled with ice-cold lemonade those same women have thrown you into. It’s bracing.

So, fine. It might not be for everyone. But lying about the contents of the book to mask your discomfort with it is just…I mean, when we read the book, we’re going to see you’re lying. The jig will be up. So, why was the jig so important in the first place?

I also have to laugh at the “I teach my students to write better essays” gambit. Like, dude, fine. We all see you positioning yourself over her in many ways. But who are you again?