Posted by Sari
Category 10, An SF book made into a movie: Susan Cooper: The Dark is Rising
In this classic, young Will Stanton wakes up on his 11th birthday to find out he is last of the old ones, the time travelling chain of servants of light fighting the ever-rising dark. His task is to gather all the six signs of light.
There was a cool Twitter reading group for Dark is Rising last Christmas, where we read the book "as it happened", that is we read the chapters that happened on a particular day on that day. It really helped to get into the book, and managed to capture something from the first childhood reading which totally blew my mind. As a kid this was my favourite of the series, and it still one of the most evocative fantasies ever. But as an adult, I have to say my favourite is Greenwitch with its wonderful depiction of women and bonds between them. The less said about the atrocious american film The Dark is Rising, the better.
Category 34, Academic article or book about SF: Rob Latham (ed.): Science Fiction Criticism. An Anthology of Essential Reading.
This is a collection of writings about Science Fiction, both from writers and critics. It is split into thematic categories, and within those categories the articles are in chronological order, so you can follow through how the thinking on terms and themes have changed through the years. At the end of each category there is also an extremely helpful list of additional reading.
I suspect this collection might well become the standard 101 collection for universities. Teachers can assign either thematic whole or just appropriate articles. As a whole it gives a comprehensive and interesting picture of SF research from the early days when it was mainly people inside SF ghetto who were engaging with their literature to modern day when the dialogue between critics and practitioners is opening up to include more mainstream literary criticism.
English breakfast tea (with milk)
This English breakfast is in classic English teabags (no string), and is from a touristy "Keep Calm and Carry On" tin. I have no idea which firm provided the teabags, but they sure do the job. 95-100 degree water, leave the bag in the cup for so long that the tea basically looks like coffee, add milk and enjoy! The best thing ever on a cold morning.