KATE YOUNG: I can travel through what these characters are eating and what they're doing, and travel to places, to countries I've never been, but also to fantastical worlds that I've never been to and versions of this world that feel very different to my own or are 200 years older than this or one hundred years in the future or any of those thingsRead More
When you’re not feeling well, which books do you turn to to make yourself feel better?
I asked this question on the Allusionist Facebook and Twitter, and hundreds of you responded, but a few answers came up again and again:
Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, JRR Tolkien.
Makes sense. Science fiction, fantasy: what’s more escapist?
Jane Austen. PG Wodehouse.
Also escapist, thanks to period setting - and, rich people problems not health problems.
Things you read when you were a child: Moomins, What Katy Did, Anne of Green Gables…
Taking you back to a time in your life that perhaps felt safer, or simpler...
Boarding school shenanigans! Wizard problems not real life problems!
And, Agatha Christie.
Poison! Gunshots! Stabbing! Hang on, why would stories about murder make us feel better?
Well, they’re kind of supposed to make you feel better.Read More
LEAH KOCH: There is a certain amount of defense in being a romance fan; if you're going to be a vocal romance fan, unfortunately, you're going to have to spend some of that time explaining to people why what you like is valid and why their opinion is stupid.
HZ: Do it.
LEAH KOCH: OK! The most basic response is: "Why on Earth do you care what I am reading?" I never say that, but that is the honest question - it's like, why do you care? I like it! But let's get slightly more academic than that. Romance is primarily written by women for women. Let's not diminish the contributions of men, but let's set them aside for a second. It's a female-dominated genre.
BEA KOCH: And historically it's associated with a female readership, which is very important in the critical perception of the genre.
LEAH KOCH: Right. So it's books where women's thoughts, emotions, sexuality, take centre stage; and there's a lot of other stuff that happens around it, you know, that's what subgenres are. So it's surrounded by carriages and dresses or surrounded by vampires and werewolves or surrounded by FBI guys on the run, whatever: that's all secondary. The thing at the heart of it is a woman's experience.