michelel72: (SGA-RodneySam-Reading)
I've been trying to do more non-internet reading lately, as well as checking out more shows now and then. Two recent works have been outside my comfort zone in different ways.

(I've tried to avoid spoilers for the works discussed here.)

'Redemption in Indigo' by Karen Lord ... )

Meanwhile, for probably over a year now I've been reading the "reviews" and many of the comments at the Mark Does Stuff sites. (Without those sites, I might never have discovered the Newsflesh series or Tamora Pierce's books, just for two book examples. I can't read at his posting pace — see my comments about WIPs above — so if a book he's currently processing interests me, I read ahead and then follow his slower pace for the discussions. I don't have the same problem with visual media, fortunately, though re-watching Buffy and Angel as he discovered them for the first time was highly entertaining.)

He recently covered the short anime series Puella Magi Madoka Magica )

I don't read or watch much outside my comfort zone of standard English-language narratives. Whedon's trope deconstructions (and similar) are about as adventurous as I tend to get, and I've felt ... disappointed lately by the books and TV series that don't give me the resolution I'm expecting. I've always felt a little bad that my narrative consumption tends to be so culturally "sheltered", but I rarely have the time or energy or knowledge to get into works from other cultures or traditions.

In some cases, there are "other-culture" narratives that are tailored to cater to the inexperienced; I think Redemption in Indigo is one such. But for those that aren't, I think I need the "book club" approach to walk me through it. It's odd; I don't tend to go seeking out communities, for the most part.

But I'm glad when I come across these experiences anyway. The works deserve appreciation on their own merits, and working to appreciate them is good brain exercise.
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