More Fantasy and Historical Fiction Featuring Main Characters of Color
someone asked for this rebloggable!
[carryalaser asks: Was wondering (sorry if it’s been dealt with before) if you had favourite/recommended works of fantasy/historical fiction in regards to positive PoC representation? And thank you a lot for the effort put into this blog, one of the finest. My mother wishes it was around when she was homeschooling my sisters and I.]
OMG, Thank you!!! And your mom sounds awesome.
I’m a pretty hardcore Fantasy/Sci Fi fan and have been since childhood. The unrelenting whiteness of the genre (especially the late 70’s early 80’s stuff I was practically weaned on) really did a number on me, especially as a teen. That’s a lot of why this blog exists, in fact.
- The Crown of Stars Series by Kate Elliott
A must for medieval fans! I love the series for the awesome character development, realistic worldbuilding, and instead of “medieval England” going on and on through the entire map, you end up in versions of Hungary, Eurasia, Mesoamerica, Ethiopia and Egypt. Not only that, here’s your protagonist:
For those who are more into Steampunk and Historical Fiction (not me, in other words), I actually DO recommend another Elliott series:
- The Spiritwalker Trilogy by Kate Elliott (Cold Magic, Cold Fire, Cold Steel)
I’m still making my way through this series, but I’m actually really impressed so far. The worldbuilding is really impressive. Also, you won’t read a better summary than the one here.
- The Inheritance Trilogy by N. K. Jemisin (The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, The Broken Kingdoms, The Kingdom of Gods)
OMG. YOU NEED THIS.
Seriously if you pick one, pick THIS one. Characters you never knew you couldn’t live without include Oree Shoth, Sieh, Yeine, Nahadoth, and many, many more. Description:
Gods and mortals. Power and love. Death and revenge. In the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, gods dwell among mortals and one powerful, corrupt family rules the earth. Three extraordinary people may be the key to humanity’s salvation.
- Dreamblood (The Killing Moon, The Shadowed Sun) by N. K. Jemisin
YOUR MIND WILL BE BLOWN OKAY.
Magic system is really unique, and the characters will feel like your new, weird, difficult best friends who have hero complexes and martyr complexes and so much political intrigue and so much EVERYTHING.
- Acacia Trilogy by David Anthony Durham (Acacia, Other Lands, The Sacred Band)
This is a person with a background in Historical Fiction, so to MY taste, it starts a little dry but is meaty and totally worth it. The plot and the politics and the geography are really going to appeal to Historical Fiction buffs. The whole plots hinges around moral quandaries involving power, colonization, slavery, and drugs.
Also, the characters are pretty good. More plot driven than character driven.
- The Elemental Logic Series (Fire Logic, Earth Logic, Water Logic, forthcoming Air Logic) by Laurie J. Marks
AMAZING High Fantasy fare. These books read like a good meal. I don’t even have words for it, just….you’ll feel what the characters feel when they’re tested to the breaking point and beyond. You’ll love who they love, and need what they need. GLORIOUS DESTINIES tempered by incredible grittiness, and villains you will hate so much it’ll feel like a toothache. One of my very favorites. (NOTE: The cover of Fire Logic is whitewashed. Zanja is a woman of COLOR. I will post the cover of Earth Logic instead.)
Well, that’s what I’ve got for now!
Best way to make me late to work: ask me about books in the morning!
A lovely follower reminded me of a glaring, terrible error I made:
ESPECIALLY THE EARTHSEA SERIES
THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS.
THE ANNALS OF THE WESTERN SHORE
And for more Fantasy and Sci Fi written by Women of Color (original list source deactivated):
- Dawn by Octavia Butler
- Redemption in Indigo by Karen Lord
- Wind Follower by Carole McDonnell
- Mindscape by Andrea Hairston
- Racing the Dark by Alaya Dawn Johnson
- Dragon Sword and Wind Child by Noriko Ogiwara
- The Icarus Girl by Helen Oyeyemi
- Salt Fish Girl by Larissa Lai
- Half World by Hiromi Goto
- Silver Phoenix by Cindy Pon
- Guardian of the Spirit by Nahoko Uehashi
- Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin
- The Iron King by Julie Kawaga
- Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor
- Hammer of Witches by Shana Mlawski
- Ico: Castle in the Mist by Miyuki Miyabe
- Orleans by Sherri L. Smith
- Dualed by Elsie Chapman
- The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin
- What’s Left of Me by Kat Zhang
- Filter House (short stories) by Nisi Shawl
- Huntress by Malinda Lo
- Legend by Marie Lu
- Signal Red by Rimi B. Chatterjee
- The Conch Bearer by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
- The Island of Eternal Love by Daína Chaviano
- My Soul to Keep by Tananarive Due
- Cast in Shadow by Michelle Sagara
And, adding one of my personal favorites:
things to remember about animorphs:
- two of the main cast are poc. the alien in his human form is a poc as well.
- the traditionally feminine, concerned-with-looks character, who spends her free time shopping and who has perfect blonde hair and who follows fashion trends, is also the team’s main combat powerhouse and is generally ferocious and terrifying in combat and a Soldier more than anyone else in the team. these things do not negate each other
- the other female character is the kind and gentle one but also strong as fuck and the most talented at the animorph’s Main Skill
- there are love plots, but they are understated and affect the characters without defining them. they are also, in one case, fucking tragic
- realistic portrayals of ptsd and general trauma
- varied family compositions and firm calling out of families that emotionally abuse children
- characters are not portrayed as single handedly able to save mankind, they are just trying to hold out so that the cavalry can arrive
- it is all available free, online, right fucking now
My gift to you is a shitload of free ereader fairy tale books (format fixed)
Okay I just unearthed a TON of free fairy tale books from amazon for you.
No kindle? No problem. You can read these from a computer, phone or tablet that has the kindle app installed.
- Tales from the Arabian Nights
- Greek Fairy tales for my children
- Russian Fairy Tales A Choice Collection of Muscovite Folk-lore
- Jewish Fairy tales and legends
- English Fairy Tales
- More English fairy tales
- Canadian Fairy Tales
- Gawayne and the Green Knight: A Fairy Tale
- Irish Fairy Tales
- Dutch Fairy Tales for young folk
- East of the Sun and West of the Moon Old Tales from the North
- The Magic Bed: A book of East-Indian Fairy-Tales
- Indian Fairy Tales
- Japanese Fairy Tales
- Tales of Folk and fairies
- Aesop’s Fables; A New Translation
- Czechoslovak Fairy Tales
- The Laughing Prince: Jugoslav Folk and Fairy Tales
- The Cat and the Mouse: A book of Persian fairy tales
- Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, illustrated
- Fairy Tales of Hans Christian Anderson
- The Master Key, An Electrical Fairy Tale Founded Upon the Mysteries of Electricity
- The Blue Fairy Book (Andrew Lang’s Fairy Books)
- Dracula (still counts)
(Note I haven’t yet read these myself—these are just books I dug up on amazon that were free, and about fairy tales. I make no claim to quality)
Now go forth and learn yourself a thing.
do you think like 600 years ago book nerds got real mad when the printing press was invented because filthy casuals could get books without having to copy them out themselves
i keep getting reblogs from the exact people i’m mocking with this post
nerds really have no self awareness
“Truly, I am vexed with yon Fake Reader Girls. Forsooth, they doth pretend to like books to gain husbands and consort with the Devil.”
It gets funnier* when you remember that this was an actual argument against giving women access to education.
*and by funnier I obviously mean more frustrating and sad