Millenium Rock

February 25, 2013

gibraltarI’ve been on a fiction craze lately and have finished another series of books. I was totally captivated by the Millennium series (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is the first and most famous of this trilogy). Apart from learning about Sweden (where they take place) and about the interesting story of the author (who died not long after submitting the completed trilogy to his publisher), there were other interesting tidbits I latched onto.

One of those is the territory of Gibraltar. It’s famous for its location (at the straight that connects the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea) and for eponymous rock mountain. The limestone rock is roughly 1,400 feet tall and dominates the landscape, as you can tell from this photo. While this photo is taken from Spain, Gibraltar itself is a British Overseas Territory and the 30,000 inhabitants squeezed onto 2.6 square miles are mostly British citizens. Naturally Spain isn’t too pleased with this arrangement, but they are being a bit hypocritical since they have a similar setup in Morocco on the other side of the straight, a mere 10 miles away.

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Addicted to heroines

February 10, 2013

heroinesI’ve recently noticed that my favorite characters is popular fiction tend to be similar in a lot of ways.

1. They’re almost always women or girls.

2. They are usually the smartest characters.

3. They are highly capable.

4. They don’t really fit in / they aren’t popular.

5. They don’t care that they aren’t popular.

6. They challenge societal norms and follow their own paths.

7. They have their own personal belief system.

Lisbeth, Hermione (doesn’t follow #6 as well) and Arya generally fit these criteria. Dagny Taggart (Atlas Shrugged) is also a good example as she’s bright, capable, principled and liberated. Elizabeth Bennett (Pride & Prejudice) also fits this mold, as does Lyra Belacqua (The Golden Compass).