Around the Bookish World: News Week-in-Review

Filed in Brandon Sanderson , Christine Cody , Gena Showalter , Karen Mahoney , Larissa Ione , Lisa Mantchev , News , The Smutty Lover Posted on April 1, 2011 @ 2:00 pm 13 comments
Well after last week’s bonanza of news – things are pretty quiet this week, but I have some fantastic books/covers to watch out for and a few tidbits that will please a few people.
We have a bit of an update of Trisha Telep and the Wicked Pretty Things anthology.More authors have pulled out , Brenna Yovanoff, Seanan McGuire , along with Karen Mahoney and Lesley Livingston, Lisa Mantchev and Jessica Verdey. While Melissa Marr has announced she does not want her name to be associated with this anthology in any manner to recommend it. But that is not all, authors Ann Aguirre and Saundra Mitchell have also pulled out in a different anthology again edited by Telep. I definitely think now, Wicked Pretty Things anthology wont go ahead with its current form with only 7 of the original 13 authors left and I suspect it will be canceled.
This update leads to my second bit of news which has been really disappointing for me – I was pointed out to this fantastic write up about homophobia in publishing.
Like the case with Telep and the anthology another author, Brandon Sanderson has embroiled himself with the subject and ironically at the same time the fallout over the YA anthology happened. Brandon Sanderson’s views on homosexuality was highlighted in his blog post about Dumbledore and homosexuality. This was posted around the same time as the brohaha with the anthology meltdown which I think overshadowed it but it definitely touches on the same issues that was raised last week. 
It is important not to marginalize gay readers or to keep gay literature and issues as a niche, and I totally disagree with Brandon Sanderson’s views about homosexuality and religion, especially with some of his points about Dumbledore and views about Gay sexuality which he touches on in his blog post. I can see Sanderson’s viewpoint about the incompatibility of his religion towards homosexuality, yet I can’t condone or agree with his stance on this view and I can’t not help think that this may mar future enjoyment of his books. I don’t see why a religious stance should actually BE such an issue anyway and I just feel that religion is used as a smokescreen to hide homophobic views because loving someone who is the same sex wont harm or cause the world to end and I am in two minds about getting his future books due to this.
That is not to say this hasn’t happened before, there have been other authors who have spoken about this issue, authors like Orson Scott Card who actively campaigns against gay rights and is apologetically opposed against homosexuality and due to this has upset and disappointed a lot of people who regarded him as an integral and important author in the field of scif/fantasy genre. While a few years ago I came across a romance author, Autumn Dawn who wrote a similar statement on her site explaining she couldn’t accept homosexuality and was against it due to religious reasons. I can understand why some people have believe this due to religious reasons but I can not help see that it is used as a smokescreen or that they use religion as a moral argument to full into a discriminatory viewpoint. But there is also a lot of authors who are religious and have written strong gay characters who have healthy love lives/romances and don’t hide behind the shield of religious dogma, I just find this issue really really sad.
For more info on the discussion about Sanderson’s blog post click here for the Reddit discussion, which has some thought provoking and interesting points about this issue that expands on his views.

The Ritas was announced last weekend – for the full nominees, Dear Author has the titles and the authors posted here

More award nominations have been announced in this case its the prestigious Man Booker International Awards. American authors Marilynne Robinson and Philip Roth, Anne Tyler. Juan Goytisolo from Spain. David Malouf from Australia and Dacia Maraini from Italy and Rohinton Mistry from India and Canada and Amin Maalouf from Lebanon. As well as Chinese authors Wang Anyi and Su Tong. The British contingent Phillip Pullman, James Kellman and John Le Carre (although Le Carre asked to be removed from the awards as he wanted to give lesser known authors a chance to win the prestigious prize.)
The winner will be chosen at June 28th and will win a prize of £15000.
Melissa Rosenburg the screenwriter of Twilight has announced that she will adapt the classic Sci FI YA book Earthseed by Pamela Sargent for the big screen. Earthseed is described as Lord of the Flies set in space and is about a ship full of teens who have been created in a lab to colonise a planet with lots of inner conflict and survival. It is hoped that this will be turned into a franchise.
And now its time for book covers!!!
Larissa Ione has twitpiced the cover of her upcoming anthology with G.A Aiken, Alexandra Ivy and Jaquelyn Frank.
Got a very very sexy treat for y’all – Gena Showalter’s latest Alien Huntress novel – Dark Taste of Rapture
And finally – this book is giving me the serious spidey book tingles Badlands by Christine Cody – aka as Chris Marie Green of the Vampire Babylon series. This book is the start of a new series which will have a dystopian Western setting with vampires and a man’s quest to find his missing lover.
And I also discovered this little gem- What A Goddess Wants by Stephanie Julian:

Tessa, aka Thesan, Etruscan Goddess of the Sun, is running for her life. Her powers have been waning for centuries and now Charun, Etruscan God of the Underworld, is hunting her to consume her remaining magic, and is tracking her through her dreams to find where she is… Tessa needs a hero and fast.

Caligo is a warrior who doesn’t feel pain, heat or cold though he’s been burned before by spoiled deities. Still, there’s something about Tessa that makes him lust for a delicate golden blonde goddess. Caligo has never met a woman as warm, sunny and inviting as Tessa. She is a sun goddess, after all.

Their sizzling attraction overwhelms them from the start, and since Caligo has to protect Tessa while she’s asleep, he’s forced to share her bed. They figure, as long as they’re there, they might as well explore the incredible heat their togetherness is producing, and the journey of discovery that starts from there quickly sweeps the two of them into a love story that’s worthy of the gods…
Do you think an author’s personal views about sexuality or religion should matter or not when you choose to buy or read their books? 
Or do you think it can tarnish your enjoyment if they have strong views like this?

About Has

Has is a bookaholic and feeds her addiction whenever she can. She usually can be found lost in a Romance or an Urban Fantasy novel. Her favourite sub genres are Paranormal, Fantasy and some Scifi. Her most treasured authors are, Patricia Briggs, Ilona Andrews, Ann Aguirre, Lisa Kleypas and Tamora Pierce. She loves that discovery of finding a brand new author and falling in love with their books. Has also blogs a The Book Pushers - Book chatter and reviews

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  • Stephanie Julian April 1, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    It's so pretty, yes? I had absolutely nothing to do with the cover, but oh, my I love it. thanks for giving it a shout out.

  • Blodeuedd April 1, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    Oh great *shakes head* I will just pretend I didn't read that post by Sanderson so I later can enjoy the best series in the world

  • Sheree April 1, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    In many ways, I don't particularly care about the personal views of an author unless said views are reflected in the writings. Authors are just people, each with their own beliefs and opinions. Of course, if they are particularly rabid about their stance on something and their views are overshadowing their books, I may be less inclined to buy any more of their books.

  • Has April 1, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    I feel more strongly about the personal beliefs of authors. When authors comments like this – "Homosexuals are genetically predisposed to sin" – I can't condone or support them by buying their books although its their personal beliefs but I do think that religion is used to hide or support homophobia or other discriminatory views.

  • Sniffly Kitty April 1, 2011 at 5:35 pm

    I think authors airing their beliefs is a serious matter. I've written a post in response to Sanderson's views

  • Has April 1, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    Sniffly Kitty – AWESOME response!!!!
    😀 sums up exactly how I feel about his post!

  • Scorpio M. April 1, 2011 at 10:14 pm

    Yes, author's personal views do matter to me, if it offends me I will not read their book(s). In reality you never know who is a racist or anti-anything but if it's aired for public knowledge I can't help but be colored by it.

  • LSUReader April 1, 2011 at 10:29 pm

    I’m a religious person. I know a lot of entertainment media includes content showing behaviors that are considered sinful—killing, theft, premarital sex, adultery, homosexuality, abortion, capital punishment, cheating, lying. I also know I can read a book or watch a movie and not mimic observed behaviors. I don’t have to either applaud those behaviors or condemn the people who write about or depict them.

    Recognizing what constitutes sinfulness per my religious faith does not make me prejudicial. As a Christian, it is incumbent upon me to understand precisely that, because I am responsible for my own behavior. And, yes, homosexuality is sinful behavior to many (probably most) organized religions. Acknowledging that isn’t hiding and it isn’t homophobia.

    Has, I support your right to boycott authors who offend you. But don’t belittle their views as a smokescreen or shield. Don’t apply ulterior motives where none may exist. Please consider that these folks may have a concern that goes beyond homosexuality, to the core of their faith.

  • Casey (The Bookish Type) April 1, 2011 at 10:55 pm

    Though I am disgusted by the homophobia on display by these authors and editors, and firmly believe everyone should be free to love and be loved however they choose, I also have to agree with the previous commenter (LSUReader) that religious faith is not a smokescreen to justify prejudice. Many religions do hold controversial views, but I think that stems from the fact that they were created eons ago when things like homophobia weren't controversial. That doesn't make it right, but a person's faith is often an integral part of who they are — they can't change that any more than a gay/straight/bi/etc person can change their sexuality. It's unfair to accuse them of such machinations.

  • Casey (The Bookish Type) April 1, 2011 at 11:28 pm

    I feel that I should add that, even though I think people have a right to their beliefs, I do NOT think they should be able to impose those beliefs on others by trying to control the way they live their lives (i.e. outlawing gay marriage). This is why we have a separation of Church and State, and it's sad to see that division breaking down — especially in regards to this issue.

  • Sheree April 2, 2011 at 12:09 am

    Of course most organized religions are homophobic – religions want more followers and homosexuals aren't going to "be fruitful and multiply", not in the olden days anyway (prior to artificial insemination and surrogates). Of course, I look upon this more in a historical sense than a religious/moral sense.

  • Has April 2, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    @LSUReader and @Casey
    I didn't mean any offence as religion as a faith and peoples' belief and I do respect that. I come from a religious background too and I can see that side very well.

    But my issue is like what Casey said that religious beliefs are personal and that there should be a separation of that especially for social/political issues. And gay rights is definitely the latter. Authors who blog about social/political issues have to be aware they are trending on shakey ground especially if they use religion as an explanation because there are other beliefs and secular views out there that opposes this. Authors who blog about this issue have a platform which can be influential as well and they know this. I am not a fan of censorship and an author can and should blog about any kind of issues they feel strongly about. But they have to keep in mind that if they do they will broach issues that will upset people including their fans. I just think its best to keep quiet about these things because if you check out Autumn Dawn's posts about the reasons why gay people are like this is totally laughable and insulting especially since she uses discredited child abuse studies to explain this is the reason. I was also not impressed with Sanderson's implication that being chaste and gay is the only good way to be and I wont go into Orson Scott Card's issues. 😛

    I can understand and totally respect but there is a distinction between faith and social commentary and I think in this case the authors I have highlighted its more about the latter using faith as a smokescreen by airing their views publicly. I can understand with most organised religions homosexuality is frowned upon and is regarded a sin.

    About Sanderson,he was a bit wishy washy about his views on homosexuality and religion (unlike Card/Dawn's views)but I do wonder why he ever raised this, knowing he would create an uproar. He even said so in his post and that is why I think there should be some things that should remain unsaid.

    I think I hope I make sense 😀

  • Has April 2, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    Oops I just like to add an addendum to the point about religion and sin in homosexuality. (I somehow deleted a sentence :P) I feel that personally we shouldn't interfere into people's personal lives and use religion as a basis for that. I've seen how ugly it can get and I don't think we should judge and control people for that.

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