Fury of the Phoenix review: this is the kind of gullible tourists I’ve been talking about.
Lush and full of adventure, Cindy Pon’s Phoenix duo will take you to a world like you’ve never seen.
If you’ve never watched a single solitary wuxia show in your entire life, sure.
The books have a very Asian flare, full of Chinese roots, yet they take place in Pon’s own world, Xia.
What does “a very Asian flair flare” even mean. I mean shitty spelling aside, Pon’s fake!China is a slapdash copypasta of superficial research about China that’s so thin and non-specific you can barely tell which dynastic era it’s supposed to imitate. There’s nothing else in it. Unless this ninny believes Asia equals China and Japan. Nah, nobody’s that stupid… right?
Posted by acrackedmoon on July 3, 2011
pippin’s liveblogging of chapters 4-6
Chapter eleven. They have finally reached a country that’s… a generic Western Europelandian thing, apparently. I’m not saying that just to be mean; Cindy Pon admits that she doesn’t base Jiang Dao on anywhere or time period in particular, which makes certain of her decisions particularly telling–but we’ll get to that later in the final analyses.
For now, though, we’re back on familiar ground!
A young woman glided down the winding staircase. She was wearing a dress Ai Ling could never have imagined. It was tight-fitting and a luminous green on top, with a full skirt in a deeper forest green that must have been created from many layers. The sleeves hugged her arms to the elbow, but ended in cascades of cream lace. Her eyes held Ai Ling’s for a brief moment.
Ah Na turned to Chen Yong and extended her arm, a smile playing at the corners of her rouged lips. He bowed awkwardly and took her hand. Jealousy so strong that her stomach cramped swept through Ai Ling.
Ah Na is a thoroughly, plainly, incredibly white girl. Ai Ling sees her, the first white woman she’s encountered in her life, and her immediate reaction is to break into jealousy hives. What is wrong with this picture, class? What do we call it when women of color are portrayed as automatically jealous of white girls? Exactly.
Posted by acrackedmoon on June 24, 2011
BREAKING NEWS: Follow my COMRADE IN HATE, pippin @ dreamwidth, as she also liveblogs the THRILLING TRAUMA that is Cindy Pon’s writing in great detail and fine humor, with more quotes!
Remember what I said about Ai Ling being a creepy, creepy person? Who obsesses very creepily over her abusive romantic interest Chen Yong?
The hesitancy in his voice caught her attention. He was nervous. She tilted her face toward his. His golden eyes slid away from hers before he spoke. “I’m betrothed.”
She was certain her heart stopped for a moment, and she dug her nails into her palms, tried to keep her features a smooth mask. “What?”
“My mother arranged it right before I left. I—”
“Why didn’t you tell me?” she whispered, her entire being numb.
“I didn’t know how to.” He met her eyes then, and she was the one who looked away this time. “It’s not what I want. I should have said something sooner.”
Her lips trembled. She pressed them together hard before replying. “She’s right. It’s time for you to wed. Our first duty is—”
“To our parents,” he interrupted. “You’re repeating my own words to you. Don’t.” His tone was harsh, matching hers.
She wanted to run, to jump into the sea and swim into oblivion. Put an eternity of distance between them. She had no hold over Chen Yong. She’d never had. She pivoted away from the railing.
I’m not entirely sure this is the reaction of a well-adjusted individual.
Posted by acrackedmoon on June 23, 2011
Come one, come all! The story so far:
- the rapist guy was MISUNDERSTOOD all along (This! Is! Important!)
- all chapters begin with either Ai Ling waking up, going to sleep, or at a meal
- all women are PETITE or DAINTY; tall, muscled, or large women do not exist in Cindy Pon’s world
- WEST IS BEST, WEST IS BEST for an exciting bout of INTERNALIZED RACISM
- despite having “Phoenix” in the title, referring to Silver Phoenix, a woman 300 years dead reincarnated as Ai Ling, Fury of Fuck This Shit is entirely about Chen Yong and Mr. Misunderstood Rapist. Ai Ling, as all women should, merely tag along as an admirer and vehicle for their experiences
- Ai Ling’s and Chen Yong’s romance continues to be dysfunctional, creepily obsessed on Ai Ling’s part, and with FUCKED-UP power balance
- many, many, many flashbacks from Misunderstood Rapist’s point of view (one would think that, logically, since Ai Ling is Yin Fenghuang Silver Phoenix reincarnated the flashbacks would be from SP’s point of view but after all, these books are really about men and making sure the rapist is absolved and given a sympathetic viewpoint)
- quality of writing continues to be DEATHLY DULL
- emphasis: Ai Ling has gotten completely creepy and stalkery about Chen Yong
- despite everything MISUNDERSTOOD RAPIST is characterized and written with more nuance, attention to detail, and complexity than Ai Ling, Chen Yong, or any other character who’s appeared heretofore
- Yin Fenghuang Silver Phoenix is a much better and stronger character than Ai Ling, to absolutely nobody’s surprise; however, she is also the only other female character not portrayed negatively… and she is effectively Ai Ling
Stay tuned for the RAGEQUOTES and thirlling HATEBLOGGING! Witness as I write my first series of posts that are simultaneously tagged “poc writers” and categorized under “Racefail”!
Posted by acrackedmoon on June 22, 2011
A copy of Fury of the Phoenix has been acquired! In PDF, LIT, MOBI, EPUB, and RTF!
Internalized misogyny still in, internalized racism exceeds estimates, creepy romance continues! New and improved: fleshed out rapist! Most chapters still begin with Ai Ling waking up or going to sleep! Sexual threat very much in! Dubious gender politics, present!
MAYDAY, MAYDAY. BIOCHEMICAL WEAPON TO CINDY PON’S COORDINATES AND MAKE THAT DOUBLE TIME. REQUESTING REINFORCEMENT OF BRETHEN IN HATE. LIVEBLOGGING TO COMMENCE ETA ???.
Posted by acrackedmoon on June 21, 2011