opusculasedfera: stack of books, with a mug of tea on top (Default)
[personal profile] opusculasedfera
I've been rereading Patricia C. Wrede's Enchanted Forest Chronicles (comfort reading! <3) which stand up fairly well as an adult, though some of the jokes seem to have changed. There's a running joke about the very academic magician who has some trouble not talking in academic-ese, and I definitely used to find him funny because he sounded nonsensical, whereas now I am very impressed at the plausibility of his technical dialogue and the way that it does fit with his subsequent simplifications (obviously taking for granted the fact that a lot of the things he's talking about aren't real, but if you assume the reality of the bits of spell he's talking about, he says something complicated about how they interact and then something simpler, and the two lines do mean the same thing.) It's quite good, though it probably says some awful things about me that I have to be reminded by the text that the academic-ese is a bit overdone.

I also really want to know if post-HP kids respond to Morwen, the witch, in the same way. There's a whole plotline about people nagging at her because she doesn't fit witch stereotypes appropriately (e.g. is not aged and hideous crone with one black cat, but youthful redhead with nine cats in all colours, though firmly on the sensible and unromantic side of things), which is quite well done and finishes on useful message of 'tradition is not always right for everyone' without being preachy. But I wonder if those stereotypes exist in the same way for kids now or if they are still aware of the image of the Hallowe'en style witch, but more likely to think HP-style witchcraft, which made a fair number of jokes about that stuff in the first book especially, but pretty clearly presented a lot of variation in ways of being a witch, pretty much none of which were that stereotype, so Morwen wouldn't stick out as atypical. Though I frankly have no idea if kids are still reading Wrede so it may all be moot, though I think everyone should read these (Mammoth!Fail aside, these are much better and generally inoffensive.)

They're such charming books and I identify with Cimorene like hell and adore most of the characters. Last year's Yuletide also produced Having the Constitution for It in which the magical kingdom from these books is accidentally made a democracy, which is basically headcanon for me now as it's pitch-perfect and satisfies all of my latent anti-monarchy tendencies.


opusculasedfera: stack of books, with a mug of tea on top (Default)

September 2016


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