Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The Pleasures of Reading, Viewing, and Listening in 2017: pt.6: Liz Bourke

The Pleasures of Reading, Viewing, and Listening in 2017
by Liz Bourke

This will be a short list. It's been a long year, and this December is being a strange month. But L. Timmel Duchamp has graciously invited me to commend some items for your attention, and so I will:

 - J.Y. Yang, The Black Tides of Heaven and The Red Threads of Fate

- Cynthia Ward, The Adventure of the Incognita Countess

- Ruthanna Emrys, Winter Tide

- Ann Leckie, Provenance

- Nnedi Okorafor, Binti: Home

- Erin Bow, The Scorpion Rules

- Helen S. Wright, A Matter of Oaths

- Elizabeth Bear, The Steles of the Sky

- K. Arsenault Rivera, The Tiger's Daughter

- Fonda Lee, Jade City

- Foz Meadows, A Tyranny of Queens

- Martha Wells, All Systems Red

- Fran Wilde, Horizon

- A. Merc Rustad, So You Want To Be A Robot

- Jared Shurin and Mahvesh Murad, editors, The Djinn Falls in Love

- Max Gladstone, Ruin of Angels

- Ursula Vernon, Clockwork Boys

- Star Trek: Discovery

- Wynona Earp season one

- Killjoys season one and season two

These are the fictions that gave me joy this year, that lifted me up and kept me going when I felt low. Some of them gave me hope. Some of them argued deeply for the power of kindness. Some of them showed people with the determination to keep caring, even as the world crumbles. All of them gave me something ineffably, indescribably powerful: the feeling that the world, or at least one's life, can be different -- can be better, at least incrementally -- if we don't give up.

Liz Bourke is a cranky queer person who has opinions about science fiction and fantasy a lot. She holds a PhD in Classics from Trinity College Dublin, which means she also has a lot of opinions about history. Her reviews and nonfiction have appeared in Locus, The Cascadia Subduction Zone, and Vector, and online at, Strange Horizons, and Ideomancer. Earlier this year, Aqueduct Press published her collection of reviews and essays, Sleeping with Monsters.

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