Extremely Anti-Climactic: The Conclusion to the Book Series, THE 100

Self went searching all over the fan fiction universe for stories featuring her favorite gal, Glass.

And do you know how many she came up with?

Zero. Zip. Nada.

Which came as a horrible shock. Because, how can that be? This girl is the Katniss of the series. And she isn’t even low-born. No, she was raised on Phoenix, which is the equivalent of The Hunger Games’ Capitol. And she crawls through air vents, space walks (with no prior training in space walking), and hauls her boyfriend’s sorry ass through deep forest while eluding feral Earthborns!

But anyhoo.

(There were hundreds of stories, BTW, on Bellarke — that’s Bellamy and Clarke)

MAJOR MAJOR SPOILERS SPOILERS DO NOT READ; CONCERNS THE ENDING OF THE TRILOGY!

The last self saw of that wishy-washy boyfriend of Glass, Luke, he was heading in one direction with Camille, and Glass was heading in another.

Self really wishes she could reach into the book and slap Luke. That’s the second time he’s dumped Glass. The first was after she was “Confined” (Euphemism for: Incarcerated. Euphemism for: JAILED!), and now, when Glass’s mother has twisted her ankle and everyone is racing for the dropships to get off the spaceship which is running out of oxygen, he dumps her again. All because that stupid rival for Luke’s affection, Camille, has re-surfaced and tells Luke that Glass was the reason Luke’s roommate and pseudo-father figure, Carter, was executed. Luke has the dates of Carter’s birthday and death day TATTOOED on his torso, in case readers need to be reminded how much Carter meant to him.

Anyhoo, Glass manages to get her mother on the last dropship. And just as that last dropship is about to take off, a soldier wants to pull Glass off and take her place, and then who should come running into the dropship at the last minute to bonk that soldier on the head and take his place? Yup, that wandering boyfriend, Luke.

Meanwhile, he seems to have become separated from Camille, who is last seen running into a different dropship, all thoughts of Luke forgotten in her anxiety to LIVE.

The dropship Glass and Luke are on gets its roof peeled off during the re-entry to Earth’s atmosphere, but, regardless, everyone on that ship survives, with only a few concussions and serious-but-not-mortal injuries.

Meanwhile, other dropships have unfortunately crashed or exploded or whatever, and presumably Camille was on one of those, because in Book 3 she never puts in an appearance. Which is just too bad, because self would have loved to see Glass belt her one. And Luke seems to have had his memory slate wiped clean, because he never brings up Camille OR Carter. Ever again. Instead, he injures his hand. Then, while trying to fend off some feral Earthborns (creatures who survived the hell of nuclear radiation and even multiplied and spread all over Earth and now feel threatened by the new arrivals), he gets speared. Bleeds gouts of blood. Glass has to put him on a sled and singlehandedly drag that sled through deep forest, all the while dodging arrows from Earthborns.

This is a very exciting part of the book, dear blog readers. Self lost track of the number of times she found herself gasping in admiration over Glass’s absolute single-minded determination to save Luke’s life. There were so many times she wanted to yell, “Girl! Dump that guy! He’s not good for you! Why don’t you get with Wells instead!” But, no. She let Glass be heroic. And a heroic Glass is REALLY REALLY fun to read. She single-handedly hauled a sled with Luke on it for MILES! Her abs must be so toned!

But she makes it! And the last we see of her, a doctor is telling her that Luke will live. He doesn’t even have to have his leg amputated, which makes him a better survivor than Peeta Mellark.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

The Sequel to THE 100, And the Saga That Is Glass and Luke

Honestly, the way self is storming through this series is simply amazing!

She skips over all the Clarke, Wells, and Bellamy chapters. Because there is only one way this is all going to shake down: SURVIVAL!

SPOILER SPOILER MAJOR FEELZ AND SPOILER

No, what’s really gotten self’s attention is a character called Glass, who was completely vanished by the TV series, mebbe because she has this obstreperous boyfriend named Luke, who’s from a lower class of human. Well, he got her pregnant and she was imprisoned for an illegal pregnancy, but Glass nobly refused to spill the identity of the father, instead she gave the authorities the name of Luke’s roommate, Carter, who’d been lasciviously pawing at her whenever Luke wasn’t around, thereby proving very deserving of his fate: execution.

While Glass is imprisoned for her illegal pregnancy, Luke shacks up with his best friend, Camille.

Naturally, this story line sucks. Especially when Glass ESCAPES from her evil captors just as she’s about to be shipped to Earth with 99 other juvenile delinquents, and crawls through air vents and all manner of obstacles, only to make it back to Luke’s flat, where he opens the door to her knock, and she sees — Camille.

Luke redeems himself by dumping Camille almost immediately, but come on. Redhead vs. blonde? No question.

Then, Camille gives Glass all manner of side-eye, talks trash, swears she’s going to kill her or some such. But doesn’t actually get an opportunity until the whole space ship has to be evacuated because there’s an unfortunate oxygen leak, and in the crush to  make it to the dropships — think Titanic, only outer space — Glass’s mom sprains her ankle, can’t walk, has to be carried by Luke, and then Camille materializes, whispers to Luke the damning secret that Glass has been carrying around all this time: that in fact Glass gave up Luke’s dastardly roommate Carter so that Carter (and not Luke) could be executed for the crime of illegally impregnating Glass. And what does Luke do at this moment of terrible uncertainty? He has no problem with ditching Glass and her unable-to-walk mom and dashes off hand-in-hand with Camille.

Camille, you @@!!###

But this is no time to fall apart, because self is fervently wishing that Glass survives so she can meet up with Luke again and PUNCH THAT NO-GOOD BOY IN THE FACE!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Creepy 3: Sutro Tower, San Francisco; Holocaust Memorial, Miami, Florida

Still working off the WordPress Photo Challenge this week: CREEPY.

  • “Grab a shot of something you find disturbing.”

First, welcome to creepy San Francisco. It’s little wonder the city served as the setting for the Donald Sutherland movie, “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” The pods arrive from outer space and take root in Golden Gate Park.

Sutro Tower, San Francisco: Waiting for The Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Sutro Tower, San Francisco: Waiting for The Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Snapped from the lawn in front of the Conservatory of Flowers, Golden Gate Park.

Next, in Miami’s South Beach, the most gut-wrenching Read the rest of this entry »

The Comet (p. 270 of THE 100)

Self, what are you doing? She means, what are you doing? This is so — AARGH!

She skips all the Earth chapters because she isn’t interested in Wells, Clarke, Bellamy, Octavia, Earth creatures, Earth bugs, or Earth anything.

Everything she wants to know about is back on the spaceship where Glass continues tip-toeing around her socialite mother (The future has socialites? On a space ship?) and her mother’s paramours and Glass’s love for Luke, the boy who has a convenient friends-with-benefits relationship with his “best friend” Camille (Why does the best friend have the same name as Marcus Bane’s vampire lover in The Infernal Devices? It is such a distraction, the two sharing a name!)

Since Glass’s chapters are only a third of the book, that means self is really only reading 1/3 of The 100.

Anyhoo, the entire spaceship has a viewing party for a comet. At least, the swells on Phoenix have a party (It’s rather lame: the mother has to wear old, stained gloves, but gloves are an extreme rarity in this dystopian society. Whenever self thinks of Glass’s mother, she thinks of Audrey Hepburn brandishing a cigarette, she knows not why.)

To intensify the mood of the excerpt self is about to share with dear blog readers, she’s including a picture self took of her cell phone in her handbag. She knows everything is too blurry to distinguish any objects in the picture. But the lighted strip actually did emanate from her phone, which was tucked inside her bag.

DSCN0979

“Look!” a little girl called out. A white line was rising over the outline of the moon. Instead of fading away like most comets, it grew larger, the tail expanding as it blazed through space. It made even the stars look dim.

Glass stepped forward almost unconsciously, and a couple leaning up against the nearest window shuffled aside to give her space. It was so beautiful, Glass thought in wonder. And terrifying. It was growing larger and larger, filling up the entire viewing space in the porthole, as if it were coming straight at them.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Pardon, It’s Back to THE 100

The coolest story line isn’t even in the CW TV series: It’s Glass. Glass. Glass.

SPOIIIIILEEEERRRRS!!!

Glass is Point of View # 4, which means she appears in Chapter # 4 (So tiresome, this multiple point of view thing. Self is skipping all the Clarke and Wells chapters. It’s just so un-interesting, what’s happening on Earth: The planet survived the radioactive apocalypse and is now some kind of fecund tropical garden, Clarke is becoming the Florence Nightingale of the group, Wells suffers acute unrequited love for Clarke, and Bellamy, aside from being very protective of Prim — ah, excuse self, she means Octavia — has very toned abs)

Unlike Bellamy and Wells who had to claw their way (metaphorically) into the ship headed for Earth (or Destruction, depending on the motives of the Chancellor/ Ruler/ Despot), Glass is smart. She figures she wants OFF the space ship to Earth. So, she manages to elude the guards and get off the space ship, and she manages to slip through all the search parties who are looking for her, and of course, it’s all because she is in love with a boy, and she fights like a tiger to get to the boy, Luke, and when she finally finally reaches his flat, and knocks on his door, he opens it, and SURPRISE SURPRISE there’s another woman right behind him, and Glass belatedly notices that the flat had been dark when Luke opened the door, so whatever he and this other woman had been doing before she interrupted was something they did in the dark, and . . .  and . . . self’s heart just breaks for that brave girl.

Moving on.

The other really cool thing about The 100 (aside from the fact that the author admits in her closing remarks that she didn’t think up the plot herself; someone gave it to her, and all she did was write it. Oh no, she dreamt up the characters. That’s right. Profuse apologies!) are the cornea slips.

That’s right: when a character gets a distant look in her/his eyes, and suddenly stops speaking, it doesn’t mean they’ve been hit by a tranquilizer blowdart. It means there is an incoming. Message, that is.

It is so cool not to have to dart to a cell phone or laptop to retrieve messages. Just have them transmitted to your cornea slip. That way, you don’t even have to look down and you will never ever be accused of having bad posture or worry about developing a double chin. You just tilt your chin upwards and read what’s on your cornea slip. Who ever thought of such a cool thang?

Thank you! Self would like to have one of those, if it can happen in the next 10 years (or while she’s still alive)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Self’s Very Own Apocalyptic Dystopia

Why on earth would self be quoting from The 100 when she has written her own story of apocalyptic dystopia that was published just a few months ago?

Right? Right?

Here again is something from “The Freeze” (Bluestem, Spring 2015). When she realizes how long the story is — it’s a miracle. It’s written in very hallucinatory prose. And she was able to go on like that, without switching voice, for almost 20 pages? Self is always surprised when she can pull something like that off.

To tell the truth, every one of her speculative fiction stories is an experiment. Beginning with the extremely short story, “The Departure,” published in Philippine Genre Stories (thanks to Charles Tan, who solicited it for their very first issue).

She likes applying the dreamy voice to her science fiction.

Moving along.

There is a very terrifying scene in “The Freeze.” But she will skip right over that because she is quite distressed herself after reading it.

No sign of Annie. She had been taken by a great, invisible force. Up, towards the light? Or down to the sea. Who knew?

If there was no body, there could not be a death. That comforted me.

I walked in the gloomy dark until I heard, far away but distinct, the sound of waves pounding the cliffs.

Descend.

Almost overnight, the temperature dropped, and dropped, and dropped.

Mr. King, the old man who lived next door, said, It’s just a cold spell. It will pass.

But two weeks later, it was dark almost the whole day.

The roses blackened, my teeth chattered in my head.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Life on Earth, After the Apocalypse (THE 100, p. 97)

See, this is not at all how self would have imagined Earth to look after centuries of deadly radiation from a nuclear war.

SOMEWHAT SPOILER-Y!!!

But anyhoo, the Intrepid 100 have survived a crash landing. Now they have to find a way to survive on Earth. Or there would be no ANGST!

And angst is the be-all and end-all of self’s very existence.

Back Cover Blurb for Kass Morgan's THE 100

Back Cover Blurb for Kass Morgan’s THE 100

Lucky for them, Earth has made a remarkable recovery.

The sky was growing brighter, filling the clearing with an almost golden light that made everything look like it’d been polished overnight. The grass seemed greener, glistening with tiny drops of water. Purple blossoms began unfurling from what seemed like an unremarkable shrub. The long, tapered petals stretched toward the sun, twisting toward the air as if dancing to music only they could hear.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Beneath Your Feet 5: Oh the Places Self Roams! In Her Imagination and Elsewhere

Early this year, while self was in Mendocino, she got sent an illustration by Matthew Park (son of an ex-classmate, Mavee Park). He based his illustration off self’s story, “The Freeze,” which was as yet unpublished.

About two weeks after she got sent Matthew’s illustration, the piece was picked up by Bluestem. How’s that for synchronicity? And then, at the AWP Book Fair in Minneapolis, in April, she picked up her author copies.

The story of “The Freeze” is: The earth is slowly dying from a precipitous Ice Age that descends without warning, right after an Obama broadcast about the Russians. Self knows this is far-fetched but, hey, that is only the backstory.

She would love to see this made into an animated film, some day.

Here’s an excerpt:

My group was walking south along the coast. Why? In the cold, we became migratory birds, heading south unquestioningly, thinking: South, it will be warm. Or, anyway, warmer than here.

Can you imagine a time when . . .

Coffee. Waving good-bye to my girls every morning. Inspecting the roses. Peeling off the leaves that were mottled with blackspot and rust.

TheFreezecover_concept02-3

Self combed her archives this afternoon and found more pictures that relate to this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge:  BENEATH YOUR FEET

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, 2013, just before it shut down for renovation.

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, 2013, just before it shut down for renovation. It should be open again now?

The vaporetto stop on Ca' San Toma, Venice, early morning, May 2013

The vaporetto stop on Ca’ San Toma, Venice. Margarita Donnelly and self shared an apartment: May 2013. Margarita passed away December 2014.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Here’s What To Do With Your Incorrigible Juvenile Delinquents: The 100, pp. 45 – 46

Ship them all off to a deserted planet, in a decrepit space ship, that you hope will explode in transit!

SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS

From the back cover of The 100, by Kass Morgan

  • Ever since a devastating nuclear war, humanity has lived on spaceships far above Earth’s radioactive surface. Now, one hundred juvenile delinquents are being sent on a dangerous mission: to recolonize the planet.

P.S. You only get sent to Earth if you’re a beautiful juvenile delinquent. Because only the best genes get to re-populate. If you’re a not-beautiful juvenile delinquent, unfortunately you have a 88.9% chance of being executed.

pp. 45 – 46: The Re-Entry (Not Been Tried — FOR CENTURIES!)

Clarke looked out the windows, which were now filling with hazy grey clouds. The dropship jerked suddenly, and the buzz of conversation gave way to a flurry of gasps . . .  The shaking increased, followed by a strange hum. Clarke’s harness dug into her stomach as her body lurched from side to side, then up and down, then side to side again . . .  The hum became a piercing wail, punctuated by a sickening crush. Clarke opened her eyes and saw that the windows had cracked and were no longer full of gray . . .  Bits of white-hot metal began raining down on them. Clarke raised her arms to protect her head, but she could still feel the debris scorching her neck. The dropship shook even harder, and with a roar, part of the ceiling tore off.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

First Sentence, New Story/ And Self’s Discovery of a New Fantasy Book Series

  • Let me tell you about wind.
Self was going to take a picture for this week's WordPress Photo Challenge, instead she got distracted by bars of light . . .

Self was going to take a picture for this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge, instead she got distracted by bars of light . . .

It is a red-letter day. Self started a new series by Christopher Paolini. The first book of the series, Eragon.

Over the years, she has had much cause to thank various nieces, nephews, sons of friends who tell her, “Read this! You won’t regret it!” She thought it would be fun to compile a list of series she started because niece/nephew/children of friends brought them to her attention. Here goes:

MASSIVE SPOILER-Y ALERT:

  • The Hunger Games: Thank you to Niece G, who saw self reading Twilight and told her: “You should read The Hunger Games.” Self put off finishing Book 1 (the last 50 pages) because she thought Peeta was going to die. Until, one fine day, she spilled her angst to Niece G and Niece G said, “Peeta makes it.” Then self had to rush back home because she needed to finish the last 50 pages she’d put off reading. For three years. Two books later, self was a goner. How deep into this stuff is self? She even entertained the notion of meeting up in Dallas for a convening of Everlark fan fiction writers)
  • Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief:  Thank you to son of Gayo A.
  • The Infernal Devices: Thank you to niece in Calgary, Karina Villanueva.
Karina in Calgary: So Adorbs!

Karina in Calgary: So Adorbs!

  • Eragon: Thank you to Isaac S. At first self thought she would never get over The Infernal Devices — the angst! The Victorian Steampunk! London and York! — but Isaac thought she just might like this new series, so anyhoo, she gave it a shot. Hoooooly Smoke !!!! The Prologue was — mind-blowing.

Also just began reading Kass Morgan’s The 100 (which she heard is very different from the CW TV series). The plot goes something like this: 100 juvenile delinquents get sent to Earth to re-populate it. YAY!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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