January 15: One Good Knight by Mercedes Lackey. Apparently after last week’s Agatha Christie spree I’m now on a Five Hundred Kingdoms spree. (And so is spouse, though she’s two books ahead of me). I do wish they weren’t quite so heteronormative. (When the princess finds out the knight is a woman, she says “I guess you don’t have to worry about me falling in love with me now.” To her credit, the knight answers “I could have done without that particular remark.”) Passes the Bechdel test with flying colours, though, when all the virgins the dragon has carried off band together to put an end to the cause of the trouble. I miss the twelve-year-old and the middle-aged nun who definitely were carried off: in those scenes they all seem to be about the same indeterminate late-teens/early-twenties age. Ah well. Some writers I know (me for one) and some publishers (Ellipsis Press for one) would have made sure everybody was there, especially the ones that didn’t fit the mold. But the HEA here is unexpected and very happy.
January 12: The Fairy Godmother by Mercedes Lackey, first in the Five Hundred Kingdoms series. Oh my, if only it hadn’t been published by Harlequin, then it wouldn’t all (well, 60-70% I estimate) have had to be about the het love story. I do like the way Alexander reforms, and I don’t mind that there’s a HEA, but there’s no room for all the other stories that could have been in there. (It’s a lot better than some other stuff ML has written, though. Or perhaps Harlequin has good editors.)