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Reviews by Contributor: Russ, Joanna (2)

A Picnic in the Rain

Picnic on Paradise

By Joanna Russ  

26 Dec, 2021

Because My Tears Are Delicious To You


1968’s Nebula-nominated Picnic in Paradise is part of Joanna Russ’ Alyx sequence1. Although two previous James-reviewed entries in the series (here, and here) were fantasy2, this Alyx outing is closer to the entry in Orbit 6 (Alyx’s descendant, a time traveller, visits a 1920s American family). In this short novel, a fantasy protagonist is dropped into science fiction.

Retrieved from the depths of time, hardened swordsperson and professional thief Alyx is the Trans-Temporal Authority’s foremost agent. Because time scoops do not retrieve the living, and the circumstances that led to Alyx being dead enough to retrieve and alive enough to revive were extremely unlikely3, she is also the TTA’s only agent. However, she has the very skillset needed to guide a group of tourists from point A to point B via unexpectedly hostile territory C.

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I think from now on, I will not trust anyone who isn’t angry.”

How to Suppress Women’s Writing

By Joanna Russ  

16 Mar, 2016

Miscellaneous Reviews


I owe my awareness of this book Joanna Russ’ 1983 work How to Suppress Women’s Writing to the ancient Usenet newsgroup rec.arts.sf-lovers. I am shockingly under-read in Russ’ works1, but this one I made a point of hunting down, because then, even mentioning the title could be reliably counted upon to start a flame war. Combustible = interesting. I suspect the main reason this work is no longer flame war fodder is because it is annoyingly difficult to acquire. It has been, what’s the right word? Oh, right. Suppressed.

As I will show, it’s not enough to have good will towards women’s writing. One also has to be continually on guard against tendencies one may not be aware of having. Tendencies one may have convinced oneself one does not have.

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