23 September 2010

Day 180: Blameless

Blameless by Gail Carriger. ISBN: 9780316074155.

Before I get started on the actual topic here, I just want to say I love the covers on these.  This is not my favorite, but I dig the black and white backgrounds with subtle supernatural elements with (one supposes) Alexia in the foreground.

I think the reason I love these books so much is that Alexia and Connall annoy the ever-loving crap out of each other.  To me, this is a realistic and healthy relationship.  Mostly because it resembles my own on so many levels.  Just the other night I was assisting my fiance with editing his guest posts for my upcoming Banned Book Week, uh, postings.  I was attempting to communicate with him, while he was busy A) being purposefully dense B) honestly not getting it C) being a bad listener D) being on a completely different wavelength than me on that particular moment when we normally finish each other's sentences and read each other's minds (usually about food; we are fatkids).

We even take more or less the same roles as the Lord and Lady Maccon.  I tend to be the more pragmatic one, able to socialize with a large range of people almost solely based on my manners, but with occasional blunders due to a habit of being a bit more blunt than is normally considered "polite".  Danny, on the other hand, tends to be a bit more emotional (publicly), relies mostly on a group of friends who share commonalities, and socializes according to the already established "pack protocol" rather than a broader, more acceptable set of behaviors.  This is not to say his behaviors are unacceptable or rude, but being part of the nerd culture sometimes involves "odd" customs and an even odder set of knowledge and conversational topics.

Strangely, I think these things actually make us closer to each other.*  If I didn't get absolutely irritated with him on occasion, we would lead terribly boring lives.  If we were both so agreeable that we gave way on every little thing that annoyed us, we wouldn't be happy with each other..  We aren't exactly happy with each other now, but the occasional victory or defeat is somehow more rewarding than watching my lover cave in every time I make a demand for him to change his behavior or the way he dresses or OMG stop exhaling breath into the phone every 10 minutes like you're some kind of telephonic whale beast.**

And on some level I even enjoy the bickering and raising our voices to each other out of frustration over stupid things.***  It makes it easier to have those really difficult discussions and not get upset about it just because the other person is yelling and oh shit, we've never had a fight before.  Instead, when we are actually fighting about something that actually matters, we are able to sit down and listen to what the other person is saying and to address those concerns and come to a solution.  We don't always necessarily do it without hurting each other first, we don't necessarily do it within 24 hours, and we aren't always 100 percent mature adults in our resolutions, but we also aren't afraid to call each other assholes when it's merited (and sometimes when it's not).****  At the very least it prompts us to fix minor problems before they become big huge hairy werewolf-sized problems.

An excellent and mostly spoiler free review can be found at this ain't livin'.  The blog author does an excellent job of summarizing the flavor of the book without going into boiled down summary (I am not a fan of summaries).

*Deeble. <3  (These are responses Danny left during the editing process, thought I would share.)
**No. >:-[ 
***I'm glad one of us does.
****Which is all the time.

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