The View from the Cheap Seats by Neil Gaiman (UK edition)
Title: The View from the Cheap Seats
Author: Neil Gaiman
Publisher: HEADLINE PUBLISHING GROUP (11th April 2017)
‘Literature does not occur in a vacuum.
It cannot be a monologue. It has to be a conversation’
This collection will draw you in to exchanges on making good art and Syrian refugees, the power of a single word and playing the kazoo with Stephen King, writing about books, comics and the imagination of friends, being sad at the Oscars and telling lies for a living. Here Neil Gaiman opens our minds to the people he admires and the things he believes might just mean something – and welcomes us to the conversation too.
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (4 stars)
In THE VIEW FROM THE CHEAP SEATS Neil Gaiman dips his toe into the non-fiction genre with a series of essays on a variety of topics. It is hard to sum up this collection, as the topics covered are so varied and different; they have also been written at various stages of the author’s life. To try and create some form of cohesion within the book the eighty-seven (if I haven’t miscounted) articles are split into ten loosely themed sections, but even those are chaotic in nature. It is, despite being non-fiction, very “Gaiman-esq” in theme and style – by which I mean, a hodgepodge of non-connected ideas that somehow mesh and form a solid and entertaining whole.
The Queen’s Readers: A Collection of Essays on the Words & Worlds of Tamora Pierce ed. by Amanda Diehl and Holly Vaughn
Title: The Queen’s Readers: A Collection of Essays on the Words & Worlds of Tamora Pierce
Editors: Amanda Diehl and Holly Vaughn
Genre: Anthology, Essays, Fantasy
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (25th August 2004)
Over the course of her career, Tamora Pierce has created two worlds that continue to inspire readers more than 30 years after her first book was published.
In The Queen’s Readers, contributors explore a myriad of topics as only fans can: with love and a critical eye. With more than 30 essays covering topics from feminism to Pierce’s mythical creatures Stormwings, no fictional stone is left unturned.
Rating: ⭐️⭐️ (2 stars)
THE QUEEN’S READERS: A COLLECTION OF ESSAYS ON THE WORDS & WORLDS OF TAMORA PIERCE edited by Amanda Diehl and Holly Vaughn contains more than thirty essays about Tamora Pierce’s books. The essays cover a variety of topics from the author’s experiences with the book, to feminism and other academic based topics; each essay varies in length. They are described in the introduction as being “by her fans, for her fans.” The collection also contains a foreword by Mark Oshiro about his experiences in the Tamora Pierce fandom where he says fans “want to make sure that people are enjoying the books”.
Moranifesto by Caitlin Moran
Authors: Caitlin Moran
Genre: Autobiography, Essays, Feminism, Humour, Non-Fiction
Source: The publisher via NetGalley
Publisher: Ebury Press (9th March 2017)
‘I’ve lived through ten iOS upgrades on my Mac – and that’s just something I use to muck about on Twitter. Surely capitalism is due an upgrade or two?’
When Caitlin Moran sat down to choose her favourite pieces for her new book she realised that they all seemed to join up. Turns out, it’s the same old problems and the same old ass-hats.
Then she thought of the word ‘Moranifesto’, and she knew what she had to do…
This is Caitlin’s engaging and amusing rallying call for our times. Combining the best of her recent columns with lots of new writing unique to this book, Caitlin deals with topics as pressing and diverse as 1980s swearing, benefits, boarding schools, and why the internet is like a drunken toddler.
And whilst never afraid to address the big issues of the day – such as Benedict Cumberbatch and duffel coats – Caitlin also makes a passionate effort to understand our 21st century society and presents us with her ‘Moranifesto’ for making the world a better place.
The polite revolution starts here! Please.
Rating: ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ (3 stars)
MORANIFESTO is the latest book to come from Caitlin Moran. It is a collection of essays and musings on a variety of topics from the wearing of tights to reviews of TV shows to periods to austerity to interviews to obituaries to advice and finally a posthumous letter to her daughter. The subject matter of the book covers several years, and the variety of topics reflects this large period of time. The length of Moran’s musings on these topics varies, but all are started with a preface showing how they link into the overall section of the book and the overall idea of the book being Moran’s manifesto – or Moranifesto if you prefer.