I have a confession to make – I haven’t read any of Kameron Hurley’s novels. Don’t get me wrong: I have every intention of reading them, but they’re currently buried on the TBR mountain along with a couple dozen other authors I know I want to read. I just haven’t yet, and honestly, while I know they’re going to be fantastic books, they aren’t why I’m a fan.
I stumbled onto Kameron Hurley on Twitter when someone linked to one of her blog posts on the writing industry (probably Chuck Wendig, but I can’t be sure – I’ve been following her blog for too long to narrow it down at this point). It was an instant ‘yes’ for me – Hurley’s no-nonsense, honest approach to talking about what really goes on behind the scenes in the publishing industry was both informative, depressing as hell, and encouraging by turns (depending on my mood when I reread it – and I did reread it multiple times, along with a good number of the rest of the blogs in her archive).
I shared the blog with my writing group; they shared it with other writer friends. All in all, it was more than worth a read.
After than I followed her on Twitter, signed up for her newsletter, supported on Patreon; basically if there was a way I could get access to her words, I went for it. I knew there were others floating around in the ether – ones published on different sites or far enough back in the blog that I hadn’t seen them. But hunting down all of them was going to take more work than I was up for at the time.
Then I got word she was publishing THE GEEK FEMINIST REVOLUTION, a collection of various essays she’d previously written plus new ones written specifically for the book release. I preordered so, so fast, guys.
As it happens, one of Hurley’s most well-known essays, “We Have Always Fought,” is one I hadn’t read before, but damn is it ever fantastic. All of this book is, quite frankly. Essays are a format I rarely read in book form; I think the last one was FINDING SERENITY, and I bought that one mostly to appease my Browncoat sensibilities. Essays just aren’t something I go looking for often.
That will be changing after this one, though damn but the bar is set high now. I could give an in-detailed review, but honestly it’s hard with the breadth of topics Hurley covers here. Just trust me when I say if you’re a geek and even remotely feminist, this really is an essay collection you’ll want to read.
I’ve lucked out in that I’ve got the type of friends who, whether they’ve heard of Hurley or not, have seen the book cover and gone, “Ohhhh….” And most of them promptly asked to borrow it when I finished. A good chunk of those ended up ordering before I could lend it to them.
Following Hurley online, I saw her say over and over again that this book was released almost in a rush due to just how topical, just how “right now” the premise is, and I think she and her agent were right to put a rush on it.
However, I don’t think it’s a book that’s going to go out of style anytime soon. I’ve re-read her blogs multiple times, and I have a deep suspicion the essay collection will be no different.
It’s just – hell, it’s worth a read, y’all. Not sure whatever I can say in praise. It’s worth a read (or reread – or several). You can get your own copy on Amazon here, btw https://www.amazon.com/Geek-Feminist-Revolution-Kameron-Hurley/dp/0765386240 It's also for sale a half a dozen other places, but apparently some physical bookstores are shelving it in weird places.
Have you joined the llama revolution yet? Have a favorite essay out of the collection? Let me know @C_L_McCollum