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Stargate Monuments


Martha Wells

My Flying Lizard Circus

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A few things

* I got the editorial notes for The Edge of Worlds, the next Raksura book, and I'll be working on that for the next few weeks. I can't wait until I can show you guys the cover.

* I need to start up Martha's Guide to TV Mysteries again, since I have a few more to add to it. I was watching both versions of the Miss Marples, the ones with Geraldine McEwan and Julia McKenzie, and I finally figured out why I don't like the ones with McKenzie as much. It's like they often have McKenzie having to almost beg people, especially the police and other authority figures, to believe her. It's kind of exhausting for me because it feels like it's the position women are put in so often. You say "this is happening" and people say "no it isn't" "you're imagining it" "it is but not like you think" etc, etc, infinity. It may be more realistic but it's just disheartening to see it played out on the show with Miss Marple, who's been portrayed as a fairly powerful older woman in the past. When McEwan played her, Miss Marple seemed to never end up in that position. She was a strategist who made allies and leveraged influence and manipulated the situation so she was never put in that position. In "4.50 from Paddington" you see an instance where a cop mocks her and she and the friend with her verbally rip his face off. So many of the female characters in the McEwan series are better written, more complex, less in need of rescue, more active in their situations.

* I read Ms. Marvel volume 1 and 2 and really loved it. I thought it was interesting when there was a line about wanting to take Kamala away from her family, and my reaction was immediately to get angry and think "No! Do not take this adorable person away from her family!" In most YA adventure stories, getting the kid away from their family is the jumping off point. But in these books the family members are such great, complex, realistic characters that they add a lot to the story and you just don't want to see them split up, you know how painful that would be to her parents.

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I agree with your assessment of the Miss Marples. Not that I won't watch McKenzie if she's on, but I don't love her the way I did McEwan.

My favorite TV Miss Marple is Joan Hickson from the 1980s. If you've not seen this series, you might want to give it a try.
I've seen the others you mentioned and agree that McKenzie's interpretation of Miss Marple is rather a throwback after McEwan's more forceful version.

That's funny you should mention this, since I just last night watched David Suchet's Poirot in 'Cards on the Table'. It's the one where he's invited to a dinner party and whilst Poirot, two other detective-type men, and a murder mystery novelist are playing bridge in one room, the host and 4 other people are in another room. The host gets murdered. The three men, Poirot included, investigate and the murder mystery novelist (who happens to be a woman) has to beg (and I mean BEG) to be included. It was quite striking. It's been so long since I've read Poirot that I can't remember if this is at all how it happens in the novel. Actually, it's been so long since I've read any Miss Marple novels that I am really not sure how forceful Agatha made her. I may have to reread a few.

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