[DWJ] Personal Plumbing was Splatchers and Ransome was branding books was What are you reading?

Judith Ridge judith.ridge at gmail.com
Fri Nov 6 22:54:20 EST 2009

2009/11/7 Katarina Hjärpe <katarina.hjarpe at gmail.com>

> Concerning menstruation, this bit in Isabel Allende's Zorro novel is about
> a
> minor character, but I found it pretty unforgettable:
> *When Bernardo started smiling again, the grandmother decided that she had
> done all she could for him and that the time had come to send him back to
> the de la Vega hacienda. She was occupied in the rites and ceremonies that
> would acknowledge Light-in-the-Night's first menstrual period; nearly
> overnight she was an adolescent. That sudden transition did not distance
> her
> from Bernardo; on the contrary, it seemed to bring them closer together. As
> a farewell, she took him once again to the river and on a rock, using her
> menstrual blood, drew two birds in flight. "This is us, we will always fly
> together," she told him. Bernardo spontaneously kissed her and then ran off
> like the wind, with his body aflame.*
> I'm all for novels talking about bodily functions, but I have to admit,
> this
> made me go WTF.

Oh god, and I've just now remembered the infamous (used) tampon throwing
scene in Aidan Chambers' This Is All: The Pillow Book of Cordelia
Whatsherface...  I generally love Chambers' books but this scene (if you've
read it, never forgotten, if you haven't, spare yourself!) was my all-time
WTF moment in any book I've read ever. If I didn't know better I'd have
actually questioned in Chambers had ever met a living female, which of
course I know he has and he's a lovely man, but this scene was beyond


Judith Ridge
Western Sydney Young People's Literature Officer

Arts and Cultural Development
Blacktown City Council
PO Box 63
(62 Flushcombe Road)
Blacktown NSW 2148

My work blog: http://westword.wordpress.com/
My personal blog: http://www.misrule.com.au/s9y/
My personal website: http://www.misrule.com.au

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