|Mom and me ... way back when.|
I imagine now things we might have started to do together, too: She would have adored 12-Step group meetings, for instance, I'm sure of it! (All those stories ... ) Schmoozed excitedly at Sisters in Crime gatherings. Hosted a book club (or two!). Maybe we would have taken some trips as "just the two of us," too.
Most of all, I wonder how she would have adapted to today's feminism. She was always, at heart, a woman who didn't stand for discrimination. But in her time (she was born in 1927), marriage was WAY different, and so was employment.
Still, I am certain she'd be calling (and e-mailing and Facebooking) all her friends near and far about the "Break the Bechdel with Strong Female Characters" badge that landed on my mystery, ALL THAT GLITTERS, this winter. I'm elated that this "syndicate" on Inkshares chose my teen sleuth mystery set in Vermont for the honor. Here's the reason:
All that Glitters hooks you in the first paragraph and doesn't let go! Beth Kanell has crafted a main character who feels real from the first page, and has already introduced a mother whose voice is all her own-- and certainly someone to reckon with! We can't wait to follow Lucky as she tracks down the person who shot her father, with the help of her two friends who also already show great potential for fully developed roles!
|(Pre-order link at end.)|
All these relationships between women, I thought, rapidly recalling the splendid gallery of fictitious women, are too simple. ... And I tried to remember any case in the course of my reading where two women are represented as friends. ... They are now and then mothers and daughters. But almost without exception they are shown in their relation to men. It was strange to think that all the great women of fiction were, until Jane Austen's day, not only seen by the other sex, but seen only in relation to the other sex. And how small a part of a woman's life is that...To run the "test" today, you look at a film or novel this way, which originally applied to a movie in Bechdel's comic strip:
- The movie has to have at least two women in it,
- who talk to each other,
- about something besides a man.
It's not that we sleuth typed don't enjoy all of life -- but, as the Grand Sophy emphasized in a Georgette Heyer novel that I adored in my younger years ... there's a time and place to pay attention to some things (like what you're going to wear). And another time and place to focus on what needs to be solved.
Come to think of it, when Sherlock Holmes focused on "that woman" in his life, his detecting skills weren't quite as good, right?
Mom would have completely understood.
PS - Ready to pre-order your first-edition copy of ALL THAT GLITTERS? It's the first in a series of eight, and I bet each of them will make a good run for the Strong (and Smart and Sassy) Women category. We need to line up 750 orders to get this into print, so it really matters when you opt for a copy (or the special for three, which puts you into the published book as a sponsor!). It's easy to pre-order, just click here.