We have another book giveaway starting up today! This one is the second installment of the Earth's Final Chapter series Captain Taylor: the Starship Ceu. If you haven't read the first book yet, don't worry about it! This series is designed so you can drop in at any point and start reading.
Here is a review by Abby Adams:
Captain Taylor: The Starship Ceu is an excellent and intriguing expansion on the world. Here, the setting jumps from an isolated North America in “Avinon” to a busy starship potentially making first contact with alien life. The character development and dialogue improve from the previous book, and the characters are well rounded with believable motives. The reader learns more about the world’s past, and the villainous Planetary Council gains much more nuance. Thematically, this book explores questions of personal ambition versus a greater good, and who gets the right to determine ‘greater good’ in the first place. It is fascinating to watch characters grapple with questions and judgement calls in grey areas, knowing they lack all the information. “Captain Taylor” is a solid addition to Earth’s Final Chapter and certainly clinches the reader’s interest in the rest of the books.
I'm giving away 25 copies. Want one? Enter the giveaway by clicking the button below. The giveaway ends on Wednesday, August 31st, at 11:59pm.
Note: this book is also available on the Blog Giveaway Directory.
Hello lovelies! My graphic novella Homestead Hunts, the eighth book of the Earth's Final Chapter series, comes out in November. So this week, I am giving away 25 copies of the first installment in the series: Julian Fernandes's Avinon.
Deep in the Blackened Forest at the end of a long hunt, Avinon is drawn into an unexpected situation. It is only the start of the young man's adventure. A group of youths learn to trust each other and survive the harsh and toxic world. Their journey is part of something bigger, a quest that will forever change their lives. The introduction to, "Earth's Final Chapter."
This giveaway will go until next Thursday (August 24th). Winners will be announced the next day.
All entrants must sign up via e-mail (because that's how I'll deliver the code for your free book). But you can get extra entries by visiting the Facebook page, following me and the publisher on Twitter, and more!
Click on the link below for more details! Or you can sign up right away.
This was first posted on my Blogspot blog in September 2015. It’s since been rebooted for this. I admit it’s unusual for this site because it’s not a review or commentary on a modern book or movie, but it was very popular in ‘15, and I like the story. Ironically, I never heard of it when I was a Christian. It wasn’t until I converted to Buddhism that I read the original tale of Lilith. I’ve now written a modern version of the story for you lovelies. Enjoy!
Ever hear of Adam's ex?
They broke up over vanilla sex.
In the garden of Eden, God created man, named Adam, from the earth. Also from the earth, He created a woman, named Lilith.
(Yes, I know Lilith isn’t mentioned anywhere in the Bible. Shut up and keep reading.)
For a while, Adam and Lilith were a happy couple. They were living in a garden of plenty and immortality. It's hard to be upset about that.
But there was a problem. Adam was a bit traditional in the bedroom. The guy liked missionary style. That's fine every now and then, but Lilith wanted to try something new. She wasn't getting crazy with costumes and dildos; she just wanted to be on top.
Adam said no. He was "the superior one" and Lilith, as a woman, was "only fit to lie in the inferior position."
Lilith argued that they were both created from the earth. Ergo, they were both equal. But Adam wouldn't listen to her, and she wouldn't listen to Adam.
When she realized this was getting nowhere, Lilith said, "Fuck this," and left the Garden of Eden.
(I am not making this up. They seriously broke it off because of sex and Lilith was so angry she willingly left the garden of immortality and pleasure for crappy Earth. That's got to be the worst divorce in all mythology.)
Outside of the garden, Lilith met hundreds of demons, and had sex with a lot of them. Even Satan was there, and he didn't mind taking the bottom bunk one bit.
God was just grossed out, and you can't really blame Him. If you're all-knowing, then you're constantly subjected to way too much information that you'd rather not know. He was also stunned with the number of babies Lilith was having. I don't know why He was surprised. If you have a lot of sex before the age of birth control, you're going to have a lot of kids.
He tried to talk her into coming back to Eden and being Adam's wife. When she refused, He cursed her, condemning her kids to an early grave. Every day, one hundred of her descendants will die.
Lilith wasn't too happy about that. Unless an amulet with an angel's name is hung over a newborn infant, she'll kill it.
You're not going to find this story in the Bible. Its earliest recording is the Alphabet of ben Sirach, a medieval text (dated around 700-1000 CE) that's a collection of Hebrew and Aramaic proverbs. Whether or not this story was widely known before the book was written, nobody knows, although there are a lot of possible origins to Lilith's story that go back centuries earlier.
I like this story. I think someone took a look at Genesis and asked, "If Adam was created from the earth, why was Eve created from his rib?"
And someone probably said, "Well, that would've made women equal to men."
"Well, what's wrong with that?"
Cue Lilith, who dared to ask for equal treatment and better sex.
Obviously, Lilith didn't get a lot of sympathy in ancient times. There's the child-murder, for one thing. These days, that part's usually dropped in modern retelling. But aside from that, ancient people had a bigger problem with Lilith. This was a woman who didn’t take shit from any man--human, god, or otherwise--and who decided sexual freedom was better than married life. *gasp* Scandalous!
These days, Lilith's getting a lot more sympathy. During the feminist movement of the 1960s, there was a surge of Liliths. Essays, stories, articles...there was even a whole magazine called Lilith in 1976 written by Jewish feminists. The movement upgraded Lilith from demon/monster to strong feminine symbol.
Modern Satanists (yeah, these guys are a thing, and some of the nicest people I've ever met) elevated Lilith to a goddess, since she's often seen as Satan's consort, and therefore, Princess of Hell. She's seen as a strong female presence in Satanism, often as a deity of contraception and sexual freedom.
Personally, I see the evolution of Lilith as a positive sign in the world of women's rights. For thousands of years, a woman's worth was determined only by the man she married and the amount of children she had. If she did neither, then the only other option was being a nun. Above all, the men were in charge. You did not question that. That's why Lilith was so feared and hated: she ran counter to everything a "respectable" woman was.
Now, we see through Lilith's transformation the transformation of women as a whole. Or, rather, the transformation of people's perspective of women. Obviously we still have a long way to go; I’m sure plenty of people reading this see Lilith only as a dirty slut not worth the scum of your shoe. But overall the Lilith lifestyle has become more acceptable in Western society.
So for women, Lilith’s story is one of sexual freedom and power. And for men? The moral is: make sure your lady gets at least as many orgasms as you do, or you’ll end up with the literal mother of demons.
What do you think of Lilith? Comment below!
For those of us who grew up watching Avatar: the Last Airbender , we were peeved. It was an amazing show, but it only lasted three seasons and there were a lot of unanswered questions. Starting with, “What the hell happened to Zuko’s mom?” and ending with, “How did we get from there to the craziness of Republic City?”
Well, ask no more. Because Gene Yang and Gurihiru started a series of graphic novel trilogies to answer those questions. We see what Zuko is like as a Fire Lord, Sokka and Katara re-visit the South Pole, and Toph starts her own metalbending academy.
Even if you’re new to the Avatar franchise and are wondering why this post features a distinct lack of blue people, you can jump into the comics. Especially the first trilogy, The Promise . That’s got a nice “FYI here’s what happened in the show” at the beginning.
One thing that has always impressed me with this series is the fact that it sees several different layers of conflict. There’s the obvious war, but then there’s the clash between different cultures within the same society, the clash between friends, and a single person’s inner struggles. You’d think that after a war is over and done, that’s it. But it’s not. And I love how these books address the craziness and growing pains of the world after a century of war. That ain't going away overnight, and it's so refreshing to see a kids' series not only acknowledge that, but make it the centerpiece of their story.
Starting right where we left off, we see the Fire Nation, Earth Kingdom, and Avatar working together to heal the scars of war, starting with the Fire Nation colonies in the occupied Earth Kingdom. But after a year, Fire Lord Zuko suddenly stops shutting down colonies, and instead insists that they stay.
This is problematic for a number of reasons, the first and foremost being his relationship with Avatar Aang. More than that, Zuko's number one fear is that he'll turn into his father. So what's a guy to do? Why, make the Avatar promise to kill him if he turns evil. What could possibly go wrong?
It's actually cheaper buying the three books of this trilogy separate on Amazon than together. Weird, right? Click here to learn more.
This one is probably my favorite, probably because of the abundance of Zuko and the flashbacks to his mother's past. After the collision in The Promise, Zuko decides it’s high time he find out what happened to his mother. Aang and the rest of Team Avatar (sans Toph, who’s busy terrorizing metalbending students) agree to help him.
The catch? They need Azula.
Where The Search focuses on Zuko’s problems, The Rift focuses on Toph. She and Aang butt heads when he tries to bring back old Air Nomad traditions that rub her the wrong way.
Oh, and her dad shows up.
Smoke and Shadow
North and South
The old vs. the new is a common theme throughout the series, and it’s even more prominent here. Katara and Sokka return to the South Pole after being gone for years, only to find that it has undergone dramatic change. Sokka is, unsurprisingly, all for this “progress.” Katara, on the other hand, is warier. She, and the villain, is seeing her culture and way of life slip away.
This one is a great example of what happens when an economically more powerful country (re: the North Pole) tries to “help” a less prominent country (the South Pole). It usually doesn’t end well.
My only problem with this one is that Zuko swings by to help them out. The last time he was here, he smashed through the wall, terrorized the village, and kidnapped Aang. I was really looking forward to seeing him get confronted by the Water Tribe and face the wrath of Gran-Gran, then being forgiven at the end. But they kind of glossed over that.
The good news is they make up for it with Hakoda's awesomeness and Sokka's sarcasm. Totally worth it.
North and South came out this year, making it the most recent collection. I haven't heard anything about any more graphic novels, but the writers have left enough loose ends that another trilogy isn't far-fetched.
If anyone hears anything, let me know ASAP!
The first Dragons, Zombies and Aliens blog was started in 2015. Somewhere between college coursework, paying rent with door-to-door sales, and keeping up with my sorority sisters, I wrote reviews, rants and commentaries on books, TV shows, and movies. Now, this blog has moved, improved, and the sky's the limit!