Tanaqui tweaver at
Fri Jul 28 01:26:23 EDT 2000

17th C Spanish literature, hmm?

You could lighten up with some fine stories of a China that Never Was.

Barry Hughart's _Bridge of Birds_ (with sequels _The Story of the Stone_
and _Eight Skilled Gentleman_) is a nice blending of fairy stories from 
ancient China with a good mystery novel.

I enjoy Ernest Bramah's Kai Lung books too, but the enjoyment here is more
in the labouriously elegant circumlocutions. That Shakespeare transcription!
Start with _Kai Lung Unrolls His Mat_.

And for sheer unabashed hilarity, there's always the Internet. tvgohome, the 
onion and brunching shuttlecocks are usually funny, but not really literature.
Try some turkeys. This is what science-fiction fans call the appalling prose 
products common in the genre. I can particularly recommend Sara Cavanaugh's 
appalling _A Woman in Space_, a Tiara Novel where male astronauts are being
abducted, so our heroine gets to break the glassy sky ceiling. "Weird. Eerie.
Far out." (p8) or alternately "It was inexplicable. Weird. Far out." (p7).
"Jameson was smiling like the canary who had eaten the cat". "A few hours had 
passed since they had been pulled away from the moon. A few hours and millions 
of miles. The moon was no longer visible, not even as a star. The whole thing 
was so crazy, weird and far-out. It was as though they were floating in a giant
vacuum." Refreshingly awful, though, alas, I can't find the whole text online.
(there are reviews and excerpts, and I own the novel) You'd have to settle for 
_The Eye of Argon_ a self-publishing venture that was never sold but has become

The Bulwer-Lytton contest home page, for lovers of "dark & stormy night"
openers is quite fun, but I like big blocks of text. It does have _The Eye
of Argon_, but most of the contributions are sadly small.

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