Off the Shelf: Library Wars, issue #7

Library Wars: Love & War, Vol. 7 (Library Wars: Love & War, #7)Library Wars: Love & War, Vol. 7 by Kiiro Yumi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A librarian trainee that writes harsh, opinionated book reviews is only the start of the Library Defense Force’s troubles. After both Kasahara & Tezuka separately confront trainee Sunagawa, the troublemaker reveals that he is a sympathizer for the pro-censorship cause. This faction growing within the library supports’ ranks is led by Tezuka’s older brother Satoshi, who believes that giving into the MBC now will end the war & pay off in more autonomy for the library later. But as the Defense Force finds out, Sunagawa’s nasty reviews are just the tip of the iceberg. Shibazaki gets a tip that Sunagawa’s been burning books & when he’s called before a review board, he names Kasahara as an accomplice!

Trouble! Intrigue! Yelling at jerks who don’t take responsibility for their actions! While this issue does have all of that, I joke about my excitement. (Kasahara putting Sunagawa in his place is very satisfying though.) The relationships that readers began exploring in issue #6 deepen here. With the arrival of Tezuka’s brother, I thought for sure that Tezuka himself would start to isolate and begin to break off from the group, especially since pride is such a large part of his characterization. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that I had guessed wrong: the team pulls together in different ways from Kasahara trying to draw him out to all of them brainstorming to figure out what Sunagawa is up to to Tezuka coming clean about his estrangement from his brother.

This new sense of belonging for Tezuka is well-contrasted with Kasahara’s isolation during her inquiry before the review board. Her teammates support her just as whole-heartedly as before but her ostracization among the other recruits is painful, especially with her determination to bear it without complaint. In short, the author zigged when I thought she’d zag & the story was definitely more satisfying as a result. I’m curious now if the original novel is as good as the manga series.

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The Power of Guilt Compels You (To Blog)!

Just a quick blog–I’m fighting through a draft & I need to feel like I’m accomplishing something.  Typing random strings of swear words at the bottom of the piece isn’t helping.

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Food, Thoughts

The Food Critic’s Wife

I keep bouncing this idea for a story around in my head: one about the relationship between an English professor and his lower class wife.  He is cultured, published in academic journals & attending fêtes where he & his colleagues discuss the latest encroachment of new media studies on “traditional” literature courses.  She is mostly high school educated (possibly her husband’s former student), has a thick accent, secretly reads popular genre fiction & eats mayonnaise by the spoonful when he is away.

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Checking In For the Day

My last post was awhile ago, so I thought I should write something as part of my daily (writing) practice.  Class at WriterHouse has been satisfying.  Even though it takes me an hour and a half to two hours to get to Charlottesville, my classmates are equally eager to be there as I am.  Part of our ritual is that after we all exchange hellos, someone asks me about my drive down.  Once I tell them which route I took this time & how the scenery looked, we get down to the wordy business.

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Sunshine & Puppies & Rallying

Last month was rough, which is why I’ve been pretty bad about posting.  On top of draining family complications, I had a biopsy last week.  A thing I thought was a freckle showed up on my leg about 4 years ago & recently started looking pretty scary.  It was a good size spot on my leg that was a dark black-purple.  While it fell within the ABCDE guidelines, I still went to the doctor.

Luckily, it is not cancerous.  Both my primary care doctor & the dermatologist agree that the damned spot is a blood vessel or a vascular oddity.  But I must admit that only after they cut the little patch out of my skin, I let myself cry.  Once it was all over, I finally realized just how scared I had been despite all of the inappropriate jokes my husband & I had told each other in the weeks leading up to the check-up.  For example, if they had to amputate my leg, I would be a better mom to our three-legged cat or I could be like Lance Armstrong & bike the cancer off.

So it’s only been in the last few days that I’ve gotten myself together.  I thought I would share some of the things that have made me happy in the last few weeks.

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