Sunday, July 24, 2011

Women in Fantasy and Science Fiction

Serendipity - or do I mean synchronicity? Actually, I'm not sure. In any event I'm talking about similar things happening at the same time.

During my recent marathon reading session when I was confined to bed after surgery I read Tansy Rayner Roberts'The Shattered City, Book Two of her Creature Court trilogy. I had thoroughly enjoyed the first book, Power and Majesty, not only because it's a good read but also because her female characters are so strong. Even better the heroine and her friends are women who, when they are not involved in saving the world, make their livings as a dressmaker, a wreath maker and a ribbon maker. There are other women too, the young Duchess who is having to assert herself against the expectations of her mother and her Court and the women of the Creature Court, who have their own agendas, but always act in defence of the city. This is not to say the male characters are not well drawn. They are but it is a delight to have women who make a living in what are traditional female occupations while at the same time they perform heroic tasks. They are both great books and I'm looking forward to the final one in the trilogy.

Then I was looking at Tansy's blog for the latest on the Galactic Suburbia podcasts (always an interesting listen) and took a wander back over a few posts I had not yet read. That's where I found this link where N. K. Jemisin (another writer I discovered during my marathon. I loved The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms and I'm looking forward to the next instalment in the trilogy) talks about womanhood in fantasy. I love it when a good idea spreads, don't you.

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