Read Passing Strange by Ellen Klages Online

passing-strange

Inspired by the pulps, film noir, and screwball comedy, Passing Strange is a story as unusual and complex as San Francisco itself from World Fantasy Award winning author Ellen Klages, and a finalist for the 2017 Nebula Award for Best NovellaSan Francisco in 1940 is a haven for the unconventional Tourists flock to the cities within the city the Magic City of the Worlds Fair on an island created of artifice and illusion the forbidden city of Chinatown, a separate, alien world of exotic food and nightclubs that offer authentic experiences, straight from the pages of the pulps and the twilight world of forbidden love, where outcasts from conventional society can meet.Six women find their lives as tangled with each others as they are with the city they call home They discover love and danger on the borders where magic, science, and art intersect.At the Publisher s request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software DRM applied....

Title : Passing Strange
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 0765389517
ISBN13 : 978-0765389510
Format Type : EPub
Language : Englisch
Publisher : Tor.com 24 Januar 2017
Number of Pages : 599 Pages
File Size : 660 KB
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Passing Strange Reviews

  • Moyas Buchgewimmel
    2018-12-07 11:56

    Vom Film Noir, übers Kabarett, hin zu den Groschenheften (genauer: Pulp Fiction) mit ihren grotesken Illustrationen auf dem Deckblatt: Passing Strange ist ein Buch für NostalgikerInnen und entführt uns in die 1940er Jahre von San Francisco, wo sechs Freundinnen versuchen in einem patriarchalisch bestimmten Alltag ihr Leben zu meistern. Diese Frauen sind intelligent, stehen für Wissenschaft, Kunst und einen Hauch von Mysterium. Viel Spielraum haben sie dabei aber nicht. So schön das Buch ist, so froh bin ich nach dieser Lektüre auch, dass sich die Frauenrechte seither deutlich verbessert haben. Angesichts der aktuellen politischen Lage kann ich nur inständig hoffen, dass wir nicht in diese Zustände der 40er zurückfallen…Aber genug schwarzmalerische Zukunftssorgen. Passing Strange ist ein kurzweiliges Lesevergnügen mit einem lebendigen Blick auf die damalige Zeit. Die Handlung springt dabei in der Erzählung von der Gegenwart in die Vergangenheit und später wieder zurück. Ich kann nicht behaupten, dass ich sehr viel über die 40er weiß oder über San Francisco, aber die geschilderte Szenerie, die Bars mit ihrem bunten Publikum, die feinen Zwirne und Satinkleider, die feiernden Matrosen auf Landgang, das starke rechtliche Ungleichgewicht zwischen den Geschlechter und denen, die aus der Norm fallen, das alles wirkt überzeugend und sehr lebendig. Genauso lebendig ist auch die Kunst in dieser Geschichte. Sie springt einen in Form der Art Deco Architektur an, in Form der Wände füllenden Malerei eines Pablo Picasso, einer exzentrischen Frida oder der Kreidemalereien einer Loretta Haskel. In Passing Strange stolpert man öfter mal über namhafte Persönlichkeiten, die ganz normal und beinahe ruhmlos erscheinen. Nachvollziehbar wenn man bedenkt, dass sie erst nach ihrem Tod zu solchen Ikonen der Kunst wurden.Die Hauptcharaktere dieser Erzählung sind Frauen, die im Verborgenen soziale Normen brechen und ein Leben führen das sie die Freiheit kosten würde, wenn irgendjemand davon erführe. Manche von ihnen müssen sich Rassenvorurteilen unterwerfen, andere dem Verbot von Homosexualität und Cross-Dressing, eine der Freundinnen ist womöglich eine Hexe und wieder andere müssen gegen gewalttätige Ehemänner bestehen. Mit wenigen, aber dafür sehr wohl platzierten Strichen, zeichnet die Autorin eine ebenso kunstvoll schöne, wie deprimierend detaillierte Ära, deren optische Eleganz wir heutzutage bewundern, während wir die Schattenseiten nur zu gerne übersehen. In Passing Strange aber treffen sich beide Seiten der Medaille.Es gibt in diesem Buch einen leichten Hauch von Magie, den ich leider etwas unglücklich eingepflegt empfand. Der magische Trick, der hier zum Schluss hin ausgeführt wird ist zwar unheimlich interessant und herzerwärmend, wirkt aber nach einem zu 95% magiefreien Plot etwas fehlplatziert. Es wäre schöner gewesen, wenn die Autorin diesen magischen Teil durchgehend eingebracht hätte und nicht nur als praktische Lösung zum Schluss. Es ist aber nur ein kleiner Mangel in einem ansonsten stimmungsvollen und kurzweiligen Lesevergnügen, das seine witzigen Momente hat.Passing Strange ist ein bitterschöner Ausflug in eine romantisierte Ära, die trotz ihrer harten Züge auch sehr viel Herzlichkeit enthält und eine Art von Zauber, der nichts mit Magie zu tun hat. Ich kann diese Erzählung schon wegen der imposanten Kulisse und der allgegenwärtigen Kunst nur empfehlen.

  • Byron
    2018-11-25 08:12

    It is basically historical literary fiction involving the LBGT scene of early 1940s San Francisco with a little magic thrown in here and there. I first heard of Ellen Klages last year, when I read her short story collection Wicked Wonders. I absolutely loved it and recommended it to everyone I knew that liked sci-fi/fantasy. The stories varied from nostalgic childhood reminiscences, hard science fiction (with a touch of wistfulness for the simpler pleasures of the past), and fantasy. It's rare enough to find authors that can write genre fiction well, even rarer to find one that can write ALL the genre fiction well. I didn't love Passing Strange as much. Its point-of-view switches were a little clumsy, sometimes alternating between chapters, sometimes between paragraphs, occasionally between sentences. The characters were a tad underdeveloped, with a slightly too-big  cast for a novella-length story. I never really got a good feel for each of the characters individually.But there's a lot to like about this book. The author's affection for the city of San Francisco shines through the work. The beginnings of the LBGT culture and club scene- and the need for such spaces - are organically explored. Klages does a wonderful job highlighting the beauty and magic of the past and the start of something important while also not shying away from portraying the ugly and revolting discriminatory and violent aspects of that past (that is still all-too present). All of the main characters are women who exhibit a range of personalities, skills, beliefs, and interests, and I love seeing that level of character variety. The love story at the heart of the book is sweet. It's a short book that takes about 4 hours to read. An electronic version costs about $4 on amazon. For that relatively small investment of time and money, you'll be treated to pretty dang good story of a magical past that, at times, wasn't all that magical.

  • Kindle Customer
    2018-11-30 09:52

    This wonderful slice of the past is informative, entertaining, intriguing, and beguiling. Ellen Klages' characters come to life in the streets and night clubs of 1940 San Francisco, as does the city itself. Catching a glimpse of the less than glorious past, in terms of the equitable treatment of the LGBTQ+ population and minorities in general, is a reminder that, even in these times when it seems we have so far to go to reach where we should be, we really have come a long, long way!The initial two chapters, which set up the ending of the story, are also expertly written. While the jump from the present back to 1940 leaves the reader with more questions than answers at first, it at least begins answering some of them right off the bat. (Like who exactly the artist Haskel was...) However, that device serves as a solid hook into the story, leaving a hint that a mystery is waiting to be puzzled out and compelling the reader on to the next page to find out just why the venerable old Judge took the actions she did so many years after the events the story is set to depict.The characters in the story are rich and well developed, especially for a story of this length. While I would like to know more about each of them, I felt that I got to know them fairly well in the limited number of pages available, which is an impressive feat in a shorter work of fiction. All in all, I found the story a wonderful tale and I found Haskel and Emily in particular to be fantastic characters with an incredibly believable relationship. (Having been in a situation similar to Haskel's once myself, where a friend invited someone to a party with the express intent of introducing them to me, but not informing either of us of the fact, and now being married to said person for over 25 years... I totally get their relationship!)

  • Justdar
    2018-11-30 08:04

    How and why did I wait so long to read this book??! It checks all my boxes: historical fiction, a taste of magic, takes place in one of my favorite cities, San Francisco, and best of all it features lesbian characters. My only complaint is that it's a novella, so TOO SHORT! I want more of these wonderful rich and fascinating characters. This is my first book by Ellen Klages. I love her voice and will shortly be slurping up all the rest. The characters and their devoted friendships drew me in, the neighborhoods of the city all felt like characters all their own. Bookending the main story from the past with present day scenes was a terrific device. Now I need to go back and re-read the first two chapters to enhance my experience and fully appreciate what Helen did. That's all I'll say. It's a fascinating look at the life of lesbians in 1939, a history lesson mixed in with a sweet romance. If any of the boxes I listed initially are yours, read this book. I'm sorry to leave that world and those people. Did I mention I want more? (less)

  • Rene Sears
    2018-11-20 10:12

    Gosh, how I loved this book. I was wooed by the beautiful cover and the description, and by the time I opened it to read, I had forgotten the description, so I went in without really knowing what to expect.This a love story set in San Francisco in 1940, among a friend group of women, living in a queer San Francisco set slightly apart from the "normal" one, as an artist and a singer find each other. But it's also the story of a painting--the painting pictured on the book cover, and wow, is it perfect--and a magic too believable to discount but too subtle for most people to notice.Klages' writing is beautiful and sets the time and place so clearly I could see it as I read. The lives and relationships of the women are complex and believable. There's a frame-tale set in modern day, with the last surviving member of the friends wrapping up the last thread of the story that was bittersweet and schadenfreude-y. I have the feeling I'll be returning to this story again.