Top Things I Liked From 2017

Now in lazy format!

The absolute topmost is Re:Creators. It’s glorious, gorgeous, very surprising, and also surprisingly lesbian. I’ve raved about it at great, frequent length on twitter. Don’t let the cheery tone and seemingly bland premise at first glance fool you. Yes, the woman in the bulky armor is a lesbian; yes the pink one too; yes so is the girl with the infinite swords. It’s all gay up in here.

I’ve also watched Houseki no Kuni, which is not perfect and is a bit more of an acquired taste–Re:Creators is pretty conventional in comparison–and is animated in a very… particular way. But it’s also quite beautiful, unique, and daring in ways Steven Universe isn’t quite (jokes about Houseki no Kuni being an anime SU aside). I’m looking forward to the rest of it airing.

I’ve written a LOT on NieR: AutomataBy Installing NieR: Automata, You Have Agreed to Heartbreak and Love in the Time of (NieR:)Automata. It is just so good and IMO deserves all its accolades, and it’d be nice if it sold even more than it already does (it still doesn’t perform as well as more mainstream AAA titles, despite the fame). Having said that, Fate/Extella is also really surprising. It’s not good, but it’s just the thing if you want a lot of lesbian romancing–three distinct routes, three different romances, all lesbian all the time–played out in a beautifully over-the-top anime way.

My Stuff

I have a new book out. If you follow me on twitter you’re already sick of hearing about it, but, well.

So there. People have said rather nice things about it. Barnes and Noble SFF Blog:

This ornate novella from the John W. Campbell Award nominee drips with lurid fairytale magic. The once-tropical Southeast Asia-inspired city-state of Sirapirat has been frozen in ice ever since the arrival of the Winter Queen, who seeks the shards of a magical broken mirror that will grant her every wish. Those pierced by the shards gain great strength, but are at risk of corruption. Over years, a girl named Nuawa, who has one of the winterglass splinters lodged in her heart, has prepared to strike back against the queen and free her people—but her well-honed plans are shattered when she falls in love with Lussadh, the queen’s greatest general and a traitor to the people of Sirapirat. Sriduangkaew’s poetic prose fairly sings, and this retelling of the Snow Queen legend is a dark delight.

Skiffy and Fanty:

Benjanun Sriduangkaew creates a fascinating and very loose retelling of The Snow Queen folktale with Winterglass, a high fantasy novella that infuses steampunk technology and an interesting form of magic.  With gorgeous prose and a refreshing perspective on fantasy in general, Sriduangkaew’s unique take on a classic tale creates a captivating narrative with twists, turns, and deadly secrets.  Sroduangkaew’s own-voices retelling features an entirely POC cast and lots of queer rep, set in Southeast Asia.  It’s a relatively quick read, and I spent a very enjoyable afternoon in the world of ice and intrigue.

I should probably have more to say about the book and its launch but it has been incredible and incredibly unreal! It’s a book I am very proud of, and it’s good to write long-form once in a while; there’s something very luxurious about having this much room and having a consistent world to work with.

Short fiction wise, my two highlights of the year were these stories. ‘The Universe as Vast as Our Longings’ in The Jewish Mexican Literary Review is a story about resistance through survival, and it’s also about interracial adoption. ‘No Pearls as Blue as These’ in Beneath Ceaseless Skies is secondary-world fantasy that’s taken some things from Attack on Titan, some things from Claymore. I expect you’d be able to recognize the inspiration if you’re familiar with both.