It is the second week of SciFiMonth 2019. Ship systems are running nominally and the journey is now well underway. Home sickness is likely to be setting in for some of our fellow traveler’s so I wanted to spend this week talking about something Earth related – SF books written by diverse authors who are on my TBR. As a diverse book blogger, I am unsurprisingly here for all of the diverse fiction but SF written by diverse authors (which include authors of marginalized genders, authors of colour, queer and disabled authors for example) have a special place in my heart not only because I love the genre so much but also because diverse authors have been continuously erased from the genre. Diverse authors writing SF is not a new phenomena, they have always been there though they have been systematically erased and obscured by straight white able-bodied cis men. There is a wonderful array of diverse SF out there which deserve to be read, discussed and celebrated.
Whenever I usually talk about diverse SF, I find myself often bringing up the same examples over and over again either as books I have read (eg: Becky Chambers’ Wayfarers and Kaia Sønderby’s Failure to Communicate) or SF books on my TBR (such as poor Everfair by Nisi Shawl which has been waiting forever to be read as well as An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon). To avoid playing the same records (even if they are are wonderful records) to many times, I thought it would be fun to share with you all some books on my TBR that I’m excited to read that I don’t often give space for on my blog. Hope you enjoy.
Osiris by E.J Swift
I was very fortunate to receive a beautiful hardback edition of Osiris from the author during a giveaway on her Twitter but haven’t gotten around to reading it yet, although I am constantly, eagerly eyeing it up on my shelf. I love water-themed SF and this near-future dystopian “cli-fi” looks very much up my street with its story revolving around revolution, politics, class and rising seas.
The Cybernetic Tea Shop by Meredith Katz
This has been on my TBR for so long and I want to read it so bad but keep forgetting about it. It’s an incredibly cool sounding novella about a migrant AI technician and an illegal autonomous robot which is described on the goodreads page as an “f/f retro-future sci-fi asexual romance” and which is “a story about artificial intelligence and real kindness, about love, and the feeling of watching steam rising softly from a teacup on a bright and quiet morning” which sounds like everything I want.
The Outside by Ada Hoffmann
Another fantastic sounding book that I managed to win in a giveaway from Angry Robot at Easter Con this year and one which I’m super excited to read. One of the main things that makes me so excited to read The Outside is its autistic scientist protagonist as it’s still really uncommon to find autistic women as lead protagonists in SF! Unsurprisingly, I am also super here for its AI Gods.
The Little Homo Sapiens Scientist by S.L Huang
The Little Homo Sapiens Scientist is another little novella that I am very interested in which, I believe, I discovered through Alexa’s blog. Usually I don’t go in for retellings but this dark SF little mermaid retelling sounds amazing. It features “atargati”, sentient deep-water beings, and the fascination of a scientist to learn everything she can about the atargati, no matter the cost.
The Prey of Gods by Nicky Drayden
I’m still yet to read my first Nicky Drayden, which is a travesty tbh because I’ve heard nothing but great things about her. I’ve mostly seen bloggers talking about Temper, which does sound great, but The Prey of Gods is one that has really captured my attention. Set in South Africa, The Prey of Gods features a diverse character cast and personal robots, class, politics, and human-AI relations. Also, that cover!!
Accessing the Future: A Disability-Themed Anthology of Speculative Fiction edited by Kathryn Allan and Djibril al-Ayad
Accessing the Future was a very recent addition to my TBR that I discovered the “readers also enjoyed” feature on Goodreads. It contains work by 15 authors and 9 artists on the topic of disabilities and mental illness in the future which makes me super happy as its still difficult to find positive disabled representation in SF.