5 March 2012

Ladies First

With International Women's Day on Thursday, I would like to highlight a few of favourite authors who so happen to be to be women; each with extensive catalogue of works. Before Before diving into my little fandom crushes I would like to dedicate this post to Kage Baker.
It was a very sad day in 2010 when the news of her passing was announced. The literary world lost not just a great story teller, but a very talented, uniquely hilarious lady.  So Kage, here is to you, dear. Thanks for entertaining me, (continuing to) and inspiring me to write.  





Kage Baker: The Company Series


The basic premise involves The Company:  a 24th century company that is in the treasure business.  They recruit children from various points in the past to become immortals. These immortals are then sent back in time with each one specializing in one very specific theme.  For example, Mendoza was saved from the Spanish Inquisition trained as a biologist whose passion is for maize.  Okay, okay sounds boring right, but it is not, trust me on this.  You want to take a wild ride into the past, follow believable characters and grieve with them as they fall in love and out of, these books are for you.  

Connie Willis:  Black Out/All Clear
I cannot gush over these two books enough. Masterfully written, Willis takes us back in time to document the Blitzkrieg of London during World War II.  These two books are probably the easiest of all the science fiction books I am going to present to you.  Yes, you will have to take a leap of faith over the fact that there is time travel and that historians in the future use this device as their research tool; honestly, is that not fascinating?!  I beg of you, read these books. You will not be disappointed.     


Octavia Butler:  Lilith's Brood  (First Contact)
Octavia is probably better known for her Parable Series but I am really tired of the Armageddon theme.  From 2003-2006 I gorged on  "end of the world, mankind implodes on itself" literature and am done with it.  If you are familiar with the movie "Dawn of the Dead" or the book Blindness by Fernando Meirelles (brilliant piece of work) then you know what I am talking about. Lilith's Brood introduces us to the Oankali: biological traders whose main purpose is to share their genes with other species. Through this series, Octavia explores the story of Lilith, Adam's first wife by following the genetically altered children of Lilith ( one of the few humans saved by the Oankali after, you guessed it, Armageddon.) I am not going to lie to you, it is pretty out there as far as sci-fi goes. You going to have to read about aliens. The good thing is you end up loving them.

Margaret Atwood:  Oryx and Crake
I find it rather annoying that Margaret refuses to categorize some of her works as Science Fiction.  It is as if she is embarrassed of the genre. I don't know what she is thinking, you cannot get any more sci-fi than Hand's Maid Tale or or for that matter Oryx and Crake.  I know I just said that I was over, "Armageddon, all hell breaks lose" books but being an Atwood fan, I have to add this. The book is what you think it is about, society has imploded, all shit breaks lose.  

Lois McMaster Bujold:  Vorkosigan Saga
I end this very short list with another cherished series of mine. The Vorkosigan Saga follows Miles Vorkosigan, a physically impaired interstellar spy and mercenary admiral from the planet Barrayar. If you are interested in reading a good ole' space opera, filled with likeable characters this is for you. You won't be bored, trust me on this.  Bujold has full control of the world she has created. She takes her readers on a fantastically emotional ride filled with all those good things:  mystery, love, humour and passion. Miles Vorkosigan is probably the most debonair character in sci-fi. You cannot but fall helplessly in love with him. (or maybe that is just me, but I doubt it).