No. 118 (essentialsaltes) wrote,
No. 118

Book & Videogame medley

Jesmyn Ward (I really liked her Sing, Unburied, Sing) edited The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race, which was chosen for a different book club. The book is an homage to Baldwin's the Fire Next Time, incorporating poetry and essays generally on the topic of race.

On the whole, it didn't captivate me or reveal anything that hasn't been made obvious to anyone paying the least amount of attention. I will point out my particular favorite:
'The Dear Pledges of Our Love': A Defense of Phillis Wheatley's Husband, by Honorée Fanonne Jeffers. It's something of a literary detective story and I feel a definite kinship to the author. Wheatley is recognized as the first African American to publish a book of poems. The literary gossip that has come down to us is that her husband was no good. But Jeffers finds this rests really on the recollection of one woman, who may have had her own axe to grind, much as some views of Washington are colored by Parson Weems' fanciful storytelling.


Witchmark, by CL Polk, won the World Fantasy Award, and I did enjoy it quite a lot. It had a little vibe of Deryni with magic users hiding among ordinary folk. A dribble of steampunk. A dash of gay romance. Aristocratic skull-duggery. Not quite enough for me to absorb the full trilogy.


How Long 'Til Black Future Month? by NK Jemisin pulls together 20+ short stories by the multi-Hugo-winning author. They are quite varied and a lot of good ones. Despite the provocative title, the content is not 100% racial justice warrior-bard (not that there's anything wrong with that).


Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order has one great thing going for it -- immersion in the Star Wars universe. Yes, you get to be a Jedi and have a droid sidekick, and yes it is awesome. That said, there are some really annoying bits, like these parts where you slide on ice or whatever and die in a pit a hundred times in a row (if you're me, anyway). Also, I actually found the game too hard. This is the first game I can think of where I had to bump the difficulty down.


But getting some melee practice in was good for segueing to Ghost of Tsushima. I'm not finished with it yet, but really enjoying it from beginning to end. If Fallen Order let you be in your own SW movie, this puts you into an epic samurai film. Glorious look and feel, and some of the rethinking of game mechanics is clever. Instead of having a map with radar to lead you to your goal, the wind blows in that direction, and you can follow the scatter of cherry blossoms to your destination.
Tags: book, film, game

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