This challenge runs for one week from November 20th to 26th and provides two fun daily prompts to choose from (or you can do both!) a recommendation or a reflection.
Wednesday 23rd November
“The Great Outdoors”
Favourite settings // Literary location you would like to travel to
While I mostly think of myself as a spec fic reader, over the past couple of years I have fallen in love with historical novels. I think it’s a combination of the setting and the exquisitely polite manners of the often middle class characters. I particularly love the Victorian era (1837-1901) and the Edwardian era (1901-1910) although I also love the early 1800s so I have to include the Georgian era (1714-1837), and of course I adore Shakespeare and that was during the Elizabethan and Jacobian eras (1558–1603 and 1567–1625), although I haven’t read any books that take place in that time except for Shakespeare’s plays, and I have to admit I certainly wouldn’t like to travel there and experience it myself. But I certainly do love the older settings. There’s something romantic about no telephones, horse-drawn carriages, corsets and courting and manners. I would probably miss showers, though, and toothbrushes and toothpaste.
Some books with these settings include all of CJ Archer’s Young Adult series, starting with Emily Chambers Spirit Medium and continuing on through the Freak Houses #1-3 (even though they’re technically paranormal novels as well as historical), and Andrea Berthot’s The Gold and Gaslight Chronicles (even though they’re a bit paranormally and maybe even urban fantasy but mostly science-y), and Heather Dixon’s two books Entwined and Illusionarium probably fall in here as well, even though they’re also fantasies.
Other settings I love include Maria V Snyder’s Study world, where you can learn to do anything by magic if you have the gift, or if you’re born in the north you’ll always have work and shelter and food due to the dictatorship regime they’re under. It’s a cross between fantasy and dystopia, but they have soap and ride horses even if they don’t have telephones.
I also love Lyra’s world in Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials and would love a daemon of my own. I could happily live in that world, even if it is a bit restrictive to women and the Church is the Government. talkign bears and witches and real magic! It would be cool.
Of course, I can’t forget Harry Potter. Imagine going to a school for magic and learning everything those kids learned. It would be so wonderful. Harry’s story was told in 1990s. I wonder what kind of updates Hogwarts would have for 2016?
Similarly, I love the dual-world setting in Garth Nix’s The Old Kingdom series, but I’d only want to go there if I was a full trained Charter Mage accompanying the Abhorsen or Abhorsen-in-Waiting. I really hate the undead, see, so I would want someone accomplished with bells to help protect me. I think it’s clever world building and I’d love to visit Belisaire and the Clayr’s Glacier and even Ancelstierre.
So technically, dystopia is a sub-genre of sci fi, and I really do love the setting of The Hunger Games. I love it. It’s beautiful in the films and the arenas are amazing and the cities are so futuristically modern. I acknowledge how hard and horrible life is for the outer districts, and I wouldn’t want to go there, but I do love the setting.