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June 29 2005

'Finding Serenity' Review. Blogcritics review of the essay collection.

I have several books of this type about Buffy and Angel, and they are usually a mixed bag, but there's always some interesting and thought provoking essays...I will probably get this one, too.

But: "Reverend" Book??
But: "Reverend" Book??

Yeah I caught that too. I have this book. Its pretty good, definately worth picking up. I especially like Jewel's thoughts on every episode and the essay about the reavers. Also, a handy translation guide to all the chinese lines throughout the show. Some of the translations are silly funny.

[ edited by Spikecam21 on 2005-06-29 14:33 ]
It seemed like a fairly positive review, except for this-

The collection is broad enough that any individual reader may find a couple essays a bit simplistic for their taste and others too esoteric for what is, after all, a canceled television series.

I hate it whenever people make this comment. I remember reading reviews of some of the books which explored moral or philosophical themes in Buffy, and people made similar comments about how "it seems a little unnecessary for what was ultimately just a fantasy TV series." Most people are so ignorant that they think the programme was just fluff, based on the name. It worries me that people might have the same attitude to Firefly, but I think that it too deserves deep analysis.

And this book sounds great, I intend to buy it.
I bought it a few weeks ago but I've yet to read it. I don't generally read this kind of thing, but I'm just so enraptured by Firefly that I couldn't resist.
I have it, and I've read most of the essays. On the whole, I think the quality is a little patchier than, say, Seven Seasons of Buffy, but that may just be because there's so much less material to work from. Of course, some of the essays are great. In particular, there's a nice little point-counterpoint on the role of women in the show between whedonesque's own Bob Taylor and veteran Nancy Holder. And I love Jane E's little intros to each piece.
I have read it. The nature of this sort of collection is to be somewhat uneven in quality, but that is ok I think. It is a fun and interesting read- good for reading on the train.

I did only skim a couple of the essays, most notably the one by the sex therapist. I do think it is worth reading- there is one very funny set of imagined letters from a network executive to Joss Whedon. Funny! And I must say that although I do think that Jane Espenson's comments should be included, I didn't like them right before each essay. I would have preferred having them all at the beginning or the end. That way I could make up my own mind about each one.
Can this be found in bookshops ok in the States or is it best ordered online? I only ask cause I'll be in Florida soon and I will be popping into the local Barnes and Noble at some stage.
Simon - my guess would be online.

...and apparently I've degenerated into a publicity whore. I feel the need to say that we will be selling this book at our table (A11) at ComicCon, that we have a few copies signed by Jane as part of our charity prize event, and that (hopefully) Keith R. A. DeCandido will be coming by our table for a book signing at some point during the con. for info.

Simon - you be sure to tell me when I've crossed the line from endearingly persistent to just plain annoying. :D and have fun in sunny Florida!
also this book can be found at, as per the other thread
Simon, I think you'd be better off ordering online, a few books stores have it, but the vast majority don't. I bought mine through Amazon and read it right away; I thought it was a really fun read. I loved most of the essays and really found only two of them annoying, but I didn't really expect to agree with every single one of the essays.
My favorite was the one pitting the Serenity crew against the Star Trek Enterprise crew (guess who wins? LOL).
Simon -- FYI -- I picked this up at Barnes and Noble (a store, not online) day one, they had three other copies left. I've been back since and they've run out and subsequently gotten more in.

In other news, I read the whole thing and though it is uneven, it is well worth picking up and I would recommend it to any flan.

[ edited by zeitgeist on 2005-06-29 20:01 ]
Simon, I think it might depend upon which part of Florida you visit. I ordered a copy online last week when I called my local bookstores, including B&N, and it wasn't in stock. I doubt you would be visiting my part of the state, but I would still say your chances are better online.

Although I have not yet received my copy, I had already read that the essays were a little uneven in quality. As has already been said, that is the nature of this format. But I look forward to reading it, anyway.
I bought my copy online. Yes, it is uneven, but I really loved a lot of the essays. And they aren't just "We love Joss" booster blurbs, there is serious critical examination of the show. Favorites for me included the Reaver essay, the Zoe and Wash- More than a Marriage of Convenience, and the essay by the sex therapist. To me, that last one really clarified the role of Companions in the 'verse and helped crystallize why it Pisses me off so much when people refer to her as simple "the Space Hooker". To me, the job is the most interesting thing about Inara.
(hopefully) Keith R. A. DeCandido will be coming by our table for a book signing at some point during the con.

I have every intention of doing so, yes. *grin*
hi Keith!

I don't think I've ever 'talked' directly with you, since other folks in my group have been coordinating with you. so... hi! We're thrilled that you'll be coming to our table. I look forward to meeting you.

If you need anything at all from our end, just give me a holler -

We're at tables A11 & A12 and will also have a meeting room on Sunday for our grand prize giveaway.
Picked up the book when it came out. There are some home run essays in here, along with a few I didn't really care for (easily skipped). All in all, it was an interesting read, especially the essay on Object in Space and the one on the Sawney Beane-ish Reavers.

Well worth the cover price.
I thought this was quite a good collection. Not every essay grabbed me, but overall a very interesting read. Like EarthThatWas, I loved the essays on Objects in Space and the Reavers, and Robert Taylor's essay and several others were great as well. (I loaned the book out a while ago; I can't remember the names of the other essays I particularly liked, alas.) Definitely worth the price.
Welcome to Florida, Simon!

I'm getting together with another fanatic in a week or two to check out the book. Might trade her for my Angel comic for a few days.
miyu: what time is the drawing on Sunday?
12-2pm on Sunday we have a meeting room. The actual drawing will commence around 1:30pm. perchance might we see you there?

and I know schedules are haywire these days, but whenever you get an idea of when you'd like to do the book signing at our table, just let us know.

miyu, we should probably take this to private e-mail...... *grin*

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