Best October 2022 books for geeks and feminists

While all elections matter, this month (and last month, in the case of other early voters like me), many are casting their ballots for the first time in months or years in the 2022 midterm elections on November 8. On whether the House and Senate (not to mention all the important governors, secretaries of state — who oversee elections — and attorneys general) will turn upside down, everyone will be in a desperate race to focus our attention elsewhere while waiting for the results, if only for a moment. This is where The Mary Sue Book Club for November comes in.

This month I’ve selected a great deal of non-fiction regarding disability, dolls in popular culture, and the relationship between the author and the monster in fiction. In addition to non-fiction books, there is a title from every award winning sci-fi and fantasy you can think of, writer Rebecca Roanhorse and Chicago-based noir writer. Written by CL Polk. Finally (although I didn’t list them in order), there is also an anthology made up of many new and established YA writers who are reimagining popular fairy tales.

Strange Girls: Writing an Art Monster by Caroline Hagood.  Photo: Sputin Deauville.
(Spoten Deauville)

A mixture of memoir, cultural criticism and manifesto, weird girls He traces the art monster—a writer, often brutal and male, dedicated to working with one resolve—from ancient myth to modern literature and pop culture to ask: What happens when an art monster is a woman and/or mother? What is the relationship between creativity and brutality? Told in brief, thoughtful and charming chapters, weird girls Offers groundbreaking insight into art, motherhood, and of course, the art monster.

weird girls Released November 1.

Game by Maria Theresa Hart

Maria Theresa Heart Doll.  Photo: Bloomsbury Academy.
(Bloomsbury Academy)

object lessons is a series of short and beautifully designed books about the hidden lives of ordinary things.
The haunted doll has always been a metaphor in horror movies, but like many fears, there is some truth to its core. Dolls are owned by our aspirations. They are most commonly used as a tool to teach motherhood to young girls, but more often than not they are the embodiment of the ideal feminine self. (The word doll even functions as an acronym for a desirable woman.)

They instruct girls what to fight for in society, and reinforce patriarchal, heterosexual, and white-dominant views about class, bodies, history, and fame, in insidious ways. Girls dolls occupy the space corresponding to boys’ action figures, which represent masculinity, power, war and conflict. By analyzing dolls from Japan’s Hinamatsuri festivals in the 17th century, through the 1980s, and even today’s Bimoji dolls, “Doll” reveals how the things we play with encourage us while girls shape the women we become.

Game Releases on November 3.

Although I knew the ending by CL Polk.  Photo: Turdotcom

CL Polk turns their great powers into fantasy noir with Although I knew the end.

A magical detective dives into the affairs of divine beasts in Chicago to secure a future for the love of her life. This piece of the blonde era will dazzle anyone looking for mystery, intrigue, romance, magic, or all of the above.

An exiled Nazir who sold her soul to save her brother’s life is offered one last job before he spends eternity in Hell. When she rejects her, her client sweetens fate by offering one payment she can’t resist–the chance to have a future where she grows up with the woman she loves.

To achieve success, she is given three days to track down the White City Vampire, Chicago’s most famous serial killer. If she fails, only hell and heartbreak await her.

Although I knew the end Releases on November 8.

Angels Tread by Rebecca Ronhorse.  Photo: Gallery / Saga Press.
(Exhibition/Saga Press)

Celeste, a strong card in need of justice, take a turn Provatos Diapolito defend her sister Marielle, accused of murdering Fadila, a member of the ruling class in this mining town, in a new world of dark fantasy from The New York Times Bestselling author black sun, Rebecca Roanhorse.

1883 The mining town of Goetia thrives as prospectors come from near and far to mine a powerful new divine element from the high mountains of Colorado with the help of outcasts from the community known as the Fallen. The fallen are the descendants of demons living among the virtues, victors in an ancient war whose descendants on both sides chose to live by Mount Abaddon in this legendary West story from Rebecca Ronhorse, bestselling mastermind.

tread angels Releases on November 15.

In the middle of the night: 15 beloved fairy tales reimagined by Dalia Adler.  Photo: Flatiron Books.
(Flatiron Books)

A fascinating collection of original and re-told fiction from fifteen bestselling YA acclaimed writers..

Fairy tales have been woven for thousands of years and have remained among our most valuable stories. Weave new tales with unexpected reimagining, at midnight It brings together a diverse group of famous YA writers to breathe new life into the storied tradition. You will find out. . .

Dalia Adler reimagines it rampelstiltskinTracy Dion – the nightingaleYour Excellency Edmond – snow whiteHafsa Faisal – little red riding hoodStacy Lee – The little girl matchstickhibiscus lime – Hansel and GretelDarcy Little Badger – puss in bootsMalinda Lou – Frau TrudAlex London – CinderellaAnna Marie McLemore – NutcrackerRebecca Bodos – thief groomRory Power – Sleeping BeautyMeredith Russo – the little MermaidJetta Trellis – Fisher birdand an all-new fictional story written by Melissa Albert.

at midnight Releases on November 22.

Pride of Disability: Missions from a Post-ADA World by Ben Matlin.  Photo: Manara Press.
(Beacon Press)

A revealing picture of the diverse disability community as it is today, and how attitudes of disability, activism, and representation have evolved since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

in Disability PrideDisabled journalist Ben Matlin weaves interviews and reporting to present a range of individuals, ideas, and events in fast-paced prose. It traces the generation that grew up after the ADA reshaped America, and how it affects the future. Matlin documents how the self-advocacy of autism and the neurodiversity movement has upended the views of those whose brains function differently. The veil lifts the burgeoning disability culture — from social media to high fashion, and from Hollywood to Broadway — and demonstrates how beauty policies for those with marginalized body types and facial features are creating widespread change.

It also explores deficiencies in movement, particularly the erasure of non-white, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTQIA+) people that has aided the emergence of disability justice. It delves into systemic capacity in health care, the right-to-die movement, institutionalization, and the scourge of working without minimum wages that some call legal slavery. He found a glimmer of hope in how people with disabilities do not give up their struggle for parity and equity.

Missions from a post-ADA world Releases on November 29.

Which of these are you most excited to check out? Let us know in the comments if we missed a (non-complete) book you’ve been waiting for!

(Featured image: Tordotcom; Gallery/Saga Press; and Bloomsbury Academic.)

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