The Swan Princess C.P. Lesley In “The Swan Princess,” we meet a new Nasan from the once introduced in “The Golden Lynx“: one who’s a little bit older and a lot sadder after the miscarriage of her first pregnancy. She still finds living under her mother-in-law’s rules to be intolerable, she still finds her sister-in-law […]Read more "“The Swan Princess” by C.P. Lesley"
My characters are not only imaginary, they exist in an imaginary fantasy world. But they still have real-world prototypes or examples. Although I thought them up on my own, I’ve found some real-world examples of what they might look or be like. My main country in The Zemnian Trilogy is, of course, Zem’ (“Earth” or “Land”). But […]Read more "Fantasy characters come to life! With music videos, sword dancing, and free books!"
“Hands off Baghdad,” Dino MC 47 raps in his 2009 single “They Tell Us.” “Hands off Gaza.” In a song that was relevant then and even more relevant today, the Russian rapper–his stage name is a combination of his nickname “Dynamite” and AK-47–decries the current state of Russian-US and Russian-Ukrainian relations, exhorts Russia’s youth to […]Read more "“Hands off Baghdad”: Dino MC 47, Russia, Regime Change, and America’s Chickens Coming Home to Roost"
I wasn’t going to write about the circus surrounding Arkady Babchenko’s “murder” and sudden resurrection, which continues to unfold, but I can’t stop myself. It’s just too fascinating, and as far as I can tell the Western press has already moved back to the latest absurdity produced by Trump. So here we go: A bombshell […]Read more "Art and Dissidence in Eastern Europe: #ArkadyBabchenko and #FreeSentsov"
Arkady Babchenko As crazy fate would have it, today was the day that the article I co-wrote with WFU student Logan Stinson, “One Soldier’s War and the New Literary War Hero,” about the memoir by war correspondent and journalist Arkady Babchenko, was scheduled to come out. Crazy fate because yesterday afternoon a notification popped up […]Read more "Arkady Babchenko, One Soldier’s War, and Holy Fools"
The Winged Horse C.P. Lesley “The Winged Horse” starts up shortly after “The Golden Lynx” ends. This time it’s Ogodai, the dutiful older brother of spitfire Nasan, the heroine of the first book, whose story gets told. Ogodai, oldest son of the khan Bulat, has been betrothed to Firuza, daughter of a bey amongst the […]Read more "“The Winged Horse” by C.P. Lesley"
Everyone Loses: The Ukraine Crisis and the Ruinous Contest for Post-Soviet Eurasia Samuel Charap and Timothy J. Colton When protest and then war broke out in 2013/14 in Ukraine, many people in the US couldn’t find Ukraine, much less the Crimea or the Donbass, on a map, and for most people that’s probably still the […]Read more "“Everyone Loses” by Charap and Colton"