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Transcendent: The Year's Best Transgender Speculative Fiction

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There are fantastical stories with actual transgender characters, some for whom that is central and others for whom that isn't. And there are stories without transgender characters, but with metaphors and symbolism in their place, genuine expressions of self through such speculative fiction tropes as shapeshifting and programming. Transgender individuals see themselves in There are fantastical stories with actual transgender characters, some for whom that is central and others for whom that isn't. And there are stories without transgender characters, but with metaphors and symbolism in their place, genuine expressions of self through such speculative fiction tropes as shapeshifting and programming. Transgender individuals see themselves in transformative characters, those outsiders, before seeing themselves as human protagonists. Those feelings are still valid. But though the stories involve transformation and outsiders, sometimes the change is one of self-realization. This anthology will be a welcome read for those who are ready to transcend gender through the lens of science fiction, fantasy, and other works of imaginative fiction.


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There are fantastical stories with actual transgender characters, some for whom that is central and others for whom that isn't. And there are stories without transgender characters, but with metaphors and symbolism in their place, genuine expressions of self through such speculative fiction tropes as shapeshifting and programming. Transgender individuals see themselves in There are fantastical stories with actual transgender characters, some for whom that is central and others for whom that isn't. And there are stories without transgender characters, but with metaphors and symbolism in their place, genuine expressions of self through such speculative fiction tropes as shapeshifting and programming. Transgender individuals see themselves in transformative characters, those outsiders, before seeing themselves as human protagonists. Those feelings are still valid. But though the stories involve transformation and outsiders, sometimes the change is one of self-realization. This anthology will be a welcome read for those who are ready to transcend gender through the lens of science fiction, fantasy, and other works of imaginative fiction.

30 review for Transcendent: The Year's Best Transgender Speculative Fiction

  1. 4 out of 5

    Ana

    Wow. Wow. I have yet to encounter a more excellent collection of short stories in a single anthology. Each and every one of these babies is so beautiful, heartbreaking, mind-bending. And they are all so different from one another! I had to space them out because each one was so meaty I wanted plenty of time to savor it. It was so thrilling to see trans characters (especially ones with neo-pronouns!) simply mentioned, just as part of the story without any fanfare or the usual acrobatics required t Wow. Wow. I have yet to encounter a more excellent collection of short stories in a single anthology. Each and every one of these babies is so beautiful, heartbreaking, mind-bending. And they are all so different from one another! I had to space them out because each one was so meaty I wanted plenty of time to savor it. It was so thrilling to see trans characters (especially ones with neo-pronouns!) simply mentioned, just as part of the story without any fanfare or the usual acrobatics required to explain/catalogue/analyze. It just felt so perfect, natural, right. Exactly what I would always want and expect to see in fiction that is exploring and pushing the farthest reaches of expression, imagination, and experience.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Marie-Therese

    A mostly good but never quite outstanding collection of stories featuring trans and non-binary/genderqueer characters. The majority of the stories here are pleasant, moderately well-crafted, and heartfelt, but not very memorable. Exceptions include Nino Cipri's excellent, frequently republished "The Shape of My Name" (I think this is the third or fourth time I've read the story this year), Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam's old-fashioned Asian fairytale "Everything Beneath You", E. Catherine Tobler's vivid A mostly good but never quite outstanding collection of stories featuring trans and non-binary/genderqueer characters. The majority of the stories here are pleasant, moderately well-crafted, and heartfelt, but not very memorable. Exceptions include Nino Cipri's excellent, frequently republished "The Shape of My Name" (I think this is the third or fourth time I've read the story this year), Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam's old-fashioned Asian fairytale "Everything Beneath You", E. Catherine Tobler's vivid "Splitskin", E. Saxey's timely "The Librarian's Dilemma" (a new author for me and someone I'll be looking out for in future), Alexis A. Hunter's unusual, Amish-set "Be Not Unequally Yoked" (again, a new author for me and an interesting voice) and and Molly Tanzer's hilariously dark "The Thing on the Cheerleading Squad".

  3. 5 out of 5

    Anthony

    Absolutely fantastic collection of stories about trans* characters or written by trans* authors, curated by editor K.M. Szpara who did an amazing job of choosing stories that span the speculative fiction field from Lovecraftian horror to hard SF, and spans lengths from almost flash-fiction to novella length. I wish I had the time right now to review every story in the book, because there's not a clunker in the lot. Instead, I'll just list my favorites, in ToC order: "The Shape of My Name" by Nino Absolutely fantastic collection of stories about trans* characters or written by trans* authors, curated by editor K.M. Szpara who did an amazing job of choosing stories that span the speculative fiction field from Lovecraftian horror to hard SF, and spans lengths from almost flash-fiction to novella length. I wish I had the time right now to review every story in the book, because there's not a clunker in the lot. Instead, I'll just list my favorites, in ToC order: "The Shape of My Name" by Nino Cipri "Everything Beneath You" by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam "Contents of Care Package to Etsath-tachri, Formerly Ryan Andrew Curran (Human English Translated to Sedrayin): by Holly Heisey "Treasure Acre" by Everett Maroon "Splitskin" by E. Catherine Tobler "The Need for Overwhelming Sensation" by Bogi Takacs "Be Not Unequally Yoked" by Alexis A. Hunter "The Thing on the Cheerleading Squad" by Molly Tanzer. The whole book was wonderful, but these were the stand-outs to me.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Paul Ataua

    Pretty much hit and miss anthology that probably leans more to the miss side. There are a couple of good stories, a lot of just average pieces, and a few totally confusing ones that I found impossible to understand. I’m still not clear about the balance, but felt there seemed a little one sided away from the transfeminine. Of course, I may just be mistaken about that.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Devon

    like most collections, this was a mixed bag, but definitely more hits than misses in the collection. I especially enjoyed Nino Cipri's time-travel story "The Shape of My Name," the heartfelt magic realism of A. Merc Rustad's "When Monster's Dance," and the high-school horror of Molly Tanzer's "The Thing on the Cheerleading Squad." it's a pleasure to read a bunch of stories featuring trans characters where the primary conflict isn't transition, and it's cool that the collection samples a pretty b like most collections, this was a mixed bag, but definitely more hits than misses in the collection. I especially enjoyed Nino Cipri's time-travel story "The Shape of My Name," the heartfelt magic realism of A. Merc Rustad's "When Monster's Dance," and the high-school horror of Molly Tanzer's "The Thing on the Cheerleading Squad." it's a pleasure to read a bunch of stories featuring trans characters where the primary conflict isn't transition, and it's cool that the collection samples a pretty broad spectrum of subgenres. I was disappointed at the degree the collection skews transmasculine/nonbinary, though -- I definitely could have used more trans femmes. generally speaking I was less excited about the stories included in here that were "metaphorically" trans, or that qualified on the virtue of some character using gender neutral pronouns. it's exciting that there's now enough trans speculative fiction to make a book like this, full of high-quality writing and imagination, a reality. i hope that there's another edition next year!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This inaugural anthology collects the best transgender science fiction and fantasy short stories of 2015. I’ve been wanting to pick it up ever since I saw the author line-up; there’s a ton of great trans authors working in science fiction and fantasy, and this collection has some authors whose work I adore. My favorite story here is actually one I’ve read before. Multiple times actually. That’s how much I love “The Shape of My Name” by Nino Cipri, which fabulous, amazing, splendid, and a whole ho This inaugural anthology collects the best transgender science fiction and fantasy short stories of 2015. I’ve been wanting to pick it up ever since I saw the author line-up; there’s a ton of great trans authors working in science fiction and fantasy, and this collection has some authors whose work I adore. My favorite story here is actually one I’ve read before. Multiple times actually. That’s how much I love “The Shape of My Name” by Nino Cipri, which fabulous, amazing, splendid, and a whole host of other positive adjectives. I actually featured it in a list post for Queership (a now-closed blog for queer SFF) on queer time-travel short stories. Anyway, this story follows Heron, whose family has a time-machine in their backyard. I don’t want to say too much more, but please read it! I’ve read some other stories in this collection, which isn’t that surprising as I used to write Queership’s short fiction column. Another one here, “Treasure Acre” by Everett Maroon was actually also featured on the time-travel list. Daniel has traveled back in time to find a box buried by Danielle. I skipped over it this time around, as I did with all the other stories I’d already read. I was in the mood for new tales “Everything Beneath You” by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam is another I’d read before, in which a woman of the fisher people falls in love with a goddess who says she can give her everything she’s ever wanted, but the goddess will not unbend from her own notions of propriety. I didn’t remember liking it enough the first time around to make a second read through worthwhile. “Kin, Painted” by Penny Stirling is a story I featured on a Queership list for fantasy with aromantic protagonists. Everyone in this unnamed narrator’s family paints themselves, be it camouflage or chess boards or works of art. Their entire life, the question of what they want to paint has hung over them, even as they are unsure if they want to use paint at all. In the end, they will have to find their own way in life. Aside from “The Need for Overwhelming Sensation” by Bogi Takács, all the other stories were new to me. “The Need for Overwhelming Sensation” is one I started a year or two ago, but it turned out to be way to sexual for me so I quit pretty quickly. I didn’t give it another attempt this time around. Of the stories that were new to me, I think “Chosen” by Margarita Tenser was my favorite. It’s a short little story that flips fantasy’s conventions of “the chosen one” on their heads. I loved it, and I think it will appeal strongly to anyone who likes Terry Pratchett’s work. My second favorite has to be “The Thing on the Cheerleading Squad” by Molly Tanzer, which is sort of like Lovecraftian mythos meets high school. You don’t need to be familiar with Lovecraft to enjoy it — I know next to nothing, and I still loved this story. “The Librarian’s Dilemma” by E. Saxey was a very interesting story that’s sort of science fiction meets library science. What’s the purpose of libraries? What’s the right balance between preserving books and sharing them with the world? I wasn’t fully satisfied with the ending, but I enjoyed how the story made me think. “The Petals Abide” by Benjanun Sriduangkaew and “The Scaper’s Muse” by B.R. Sanders were both solid, professional quality science fiction stories, but ones I doubt I’ll remember. They just didn’t have enough of an impact. I was looking forward to reading a new story by A. Merc Rustad, “Where Monsters Dance,” but in the end, I don’t think it was one of their best. That’s not a particular slight on “Where Monsters Dance” — Rustad has so many phenomenal stories that any story that’s just “good” doesn’t stand out much in comparison. The only story I really had a problem with was “Contents of Care Package to Etsath-tachri, Formerly Ryan Andrew Curran (Human English Translated to Sedrayin) by Holly Heisey, which was about a human transitioning to alien. I don’t think the metaphorical concept worked for me. It made me think more of those racist creeps like Rachel Dolezal who claim to be “trans-racial.” Other stories include “Into the Waters I rode Down” by Jack Hollis Marr, “Splitskin” by E. Catherine Tobler, and “Be Not Unequally Yolked” by Alexis A. Hunter. Like all anthologies, Transcendent was mixed, but I’m glad I read it. I’ve also got the third volume on my Kindle, so you may be seeing a review of that at some point. Review from The Illustrated Page.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This collection is one of my absolute favourites at the moment, and I won't shut up about it. I was a little concerned by the messy/overcrowded cover that these stories would be unimpressive or unremarkable. I was also worried that they'd only been included because of their transness and not because of their talent - but thankfully this was not the case!! Out of the 15 stories, I loved 8 of them. (the others were still very well written, but just weren't my specific brand of sci fi). I can't get This collection is one of my absolute favourites at the moment, and I won't shut up about it. I was a little concerned by the messy/overcrowded cover that these stories would be unimpressive or unremarkable. I was also worried that they'd only been included because of their transness and not because of their talent - but thankfully this was not the case!! Out of the 15 stories, I loved 8 of them. (the others were still very well written, but just weren't my specific brand of sci fi). I can't get some of the motifs out of my head - and the first story (The Shape of my Name by Nino Cipri) is a standalone ebook by Tor... which I promptly purchased just to support the author (and then re-read). I also realised, by researching the later volumes in this Transcendent series, that several high profile sci fi authors are trans or queer, which I was previously unaware of. This made me really happy - knowing that in a genre I love, people are distinguished first and foremost for their writing. This book broadened my understanding of gender itself, and (I hope) deepened my compassion for others. It's so human, even when it's alien.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Salamanderinspace

    A great collection! It reminds me of a Best of SFF anthology. It's not an easy or light read--I had to skip a couple stories because they were too poetic, too dense, too smart for me. The ones I did read were excellent, though. A great collection! It reminds me of a Best of SFF anthology. It's not an easy or light read--I had to skip a couple stories because they were too poetic, too dense, too smart for me. The ones I did read were excellent, though.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Bill

    I registered a book at BookCrossing.com! http://www.BookCrossing.com/journal/13667162 All in all, I found the collection a superior mix of stories with no klunkers. A handful of stories were "merely" slightly more than average but most ranged from great to near perfect. As a whole, the anthology took on more than simple transgender changes and playing with male and female roles. There were totally elevated from the bulk of TG TF stories that I read a steady diet of at the end of the 20th century. I registered a book at BookCrossing.com! http://www.BookCrossing.com/journal/13667162 All in all, I found the collection a superior mix of stories with no klunkers. A handful of stories were "merely" slightly more than average but most ranged from great to near perfect. As a whole, the anthology took on more than simple transgender changes and playing with male and female roles. There were totally elevated from the bulk of TG TF stories that I read a steady diet of at the end of the 20th century. There was no mind control, body horror, or rapist turn-abouts in these pages that I might see from Big Closet or the Transformation Story Archives. My least favorite stories were INTO THE WATERS I RODE DOWN, EVERYTHING BENEATH YOU, and CONTENTS OF CARE PACKAGE TO ETSATH-TACHRI, FORMERLY RYAN ANDREW CURRAN (HUMAN ENGLISH TRANSLATED TO SEDRAYIN). Each of these stories were better than average, which is what you want to see in a "best of" collection. There just seemed to be something that wasn't clicking with me. My favorite stories were, BE NOT UNEQUALLY YOKED, THE THING ON THE CHEERLEADING SQUAD, and WHERE MONSTERS DANCE. So generally, for me, the stories improved as I got deeper into the book. I tend to think anthology editors like to sort from Better to Best, but I need to talk to more editors to see if this is usually the case. I was really excited to have purchased this.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Artur Nowrot

    In comparison with 2 and 3, I think this anthology missed my sensibilities a bit. Some stories struck me as a bit too earnest and sentimental, others - too unnerving ("The Thing on the Cheerleading Squad"). It seemed to skew more towards fantasy and urban fantasy/horror, though, which I liked, as those are my preferred genres. Personal highlights: "The Shape of My Name" by Nino Cipri "The Librarian's Dilemma" by E. Saxey "Chosen" by Margaret Tenser In comparison with 2 and 3, I think this anthology missed my sensibilities a bit. Some stories struck me as a bit too earnest and sentimental, others - too unnerving ("The Thing on the Cheerleading Squad"). It seemed to skew more towards fantasy and urban fantasy/horror, though, which I liked, as those are my preferred genres. Personal highlights: "The Shape of My Name" by Nino Cipri "The Librarian's Dilemma" by E. Saxey "Chosen" by Margaret Tenser

  11. 4 out of 5

    Steve Stivaktis

    While Transcendent has the same problem as every short story collection, which is the general difficulty for a single reader to appreciate all stories equally due to plain taste, it's definitely worth reading, mostly because I've been searching for proper representation of trans folks since day one and I've never found it. And while some stories deal with the matter in a rather awkward way, to say with caution, and some others only have it in the background, there are some others that satisfied While Transcendent has the same problem as every short story collection, which is the general difficulty for a single reader to appreciate all stories equally due to plain taste, it's definitely worth reading, mostly because I've been searching for proper representation of trans folks since day one and I've never found it. And while some stories deal with the matter in a rather awkward way, to say with caution, and some others only have it in the background, there are some others that satisfied me deeply with their portrayal of fellow trans people. I'm going to point out specifically A. Merc Rustad's "Where Monsters Dance" for its powerful feelings and queerness and upsetting themes, despite including my pet peeve of finding out the trans character's dead name, Jack Hollis Marr's "into the waters i rode down" for its atmosphere, and most of all Margarita Tenser's "Chosen", which is not only brilliantly laconic but also sums up the entire aesthetic of what I'm looking for in a fantasy story.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Hillary

    A broad range of styles makes up this collection of sci-fi and fantasy fiction by genderqueer authors. Some felt more accessible than others to me. Some involve the experience of being trans or genderqueer in a literal, straightforward manner, while others are more metaphorical. None of them hold your hand--they aren't pedestrian stories attempting to define transgenderism, the process of transitioning, or the struggle to be accepted by one's family, peers, or society. All of those subjects are A broad range of styles makes up this collection of sci-fi and fantasy fiction by genderqueer authors. Some felt more accessible than others to me. Some involve the experience of being trans or genderqueer in a literal, straightforward manner, while others are more metaphorical. None of them hold your hand--they aren't pedestrian stories attempting to define transgenderism, the process of transitioning, or the struggle to be accepted by one's family, peers, or society. All of those subjects are touched on, but none of them make a story in this anthology. Some stories are inextricably tied to the trans experience, but for others, it's one detail to enrich the story. Some of the highlights are "The Shape of My Name," "The Librarian's Dilemma," "Where Monsters Dance," and "The Thing on the Cheerleading Squad."

  13. 4 out of 5

    Brandon Desiderio

    Some of these stories will stay with me forever. This is a superb anthology for a taste of many different voices that tackle or subvert the speculative fiction genre in divergent ways. Szpara rocked it with deciding on these stories to include! Among my favorite were these, hands down: -Be Not Unequivocally Yoked by Alexis A. Hunter (probably my favorite overall!) -Where Monsters Dance by A. Merc Rustad (close second favorite!) -The Shape of My Name by Nino Cipri (!!!!!) -The Librarian’s Dilemma by Some of these stories will stay with me forever. This is a superb anthology for a taste of many different voices that tackle or subvert the speculative fiction genre in divergent ways. Szpara rocked it with deciding on these stories to include! Among my favorite were these, hands down: -Be Not Unequivocally Yoked by Alexis A. Hunter (probably my favorite overall!) -Where Monsters Dance by A. Merc Rustad (close second favorite!) -The Shape of My Name by Nino Cipri (!!!!!) -The Librarian’s Dilemma by E. Saxey -Everything Beneath You by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam -The Petals Abide by Benjamin Sriduangkaew -Splitskin by E. Catherine Tobler ...I really can list the entire table of contents, honestly. Such good stuff! Can’t wait to reread this in the years to come. And to follow many of these authors’ careers! Including Mr. Szpara’s! GET A COPY! You won’t regret it.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Alice Lemon

    I got through this book because I felt it was something I should read, as a trans person who is a science fiction and fantasy fan. And there were a couple of stories I did like, but a lot of the stories were utterly incomprehensible, or seemed incomplete: like they were a fragment from something that could have been an interesting story, but nothing at all complete. There was one story that kind of read like a transphobic joke---it was about a man who decides he's really an alien and goes off to I got through this book because I felt it was something I should read, as a trans person who is a science fiction and fantasy fan. And there were a couple of stories I did like, but a lot of the stories were utterly incomprehensible, or seemed incomplete: like they were a fragment from something that could have been an interesting story, but nothing at all complete. There was one story that kind of read like a transphobic joke---it was about a man who decides he's really an alien and goes off to live with aliens in an alien body---and the only transfeminine character I noticed in the whole book (there may have been others I just failed to recognize as such) seemed to exist solely as a plot device, being kidnapped to give her cis girlfriend an excuse to go looking for her.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Niccolai

    To have trans and gender-weird narratives normalized is bigger than cisgender people can even imagine. Wow! What an excellent collection of stories from some uber talented people. My favorites were: The Librarian's Dilemma - E. Saxey The Shape of My Name - Nino Cipri Kin, Painted - Penny Stirling Being able to read about trans people who are more than props and whose narratives are more than about villains and tragedies is an experience trans people crave. That this is speculative fiction with most o To have trans and gender-weird narratives normalized is bigger than cisgender people can even imagine. Wow! What an excellent collection of stories from some uber talented people. My favorites were: The Librarian's Dilemma - E. Saxey The Shape of My Name - Nino Cipri Kin, Painted - Penny Stirling Being able to read about trans people who are more than props and whose narratives are more than about villains and tragedies is an experience trans people crave. That this is speculative fiction with most of these stories set in fantasy/sci-fi worlds makes it hard to envision myself as these characters in the way most people get to envision themselves as characters, but to have trans and gender-weird narratives normalized is bigger than cisgender people can even imagine.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Danni Green

    Not as good as I hoped it would be; the most engaging stories in this collection were actually all ones I’d read previously. I just felt like there was a lack of stories I could relate to, which seemed odd for a collection of trans spec fic, and while I don’t expect to connect with every story in any anthology, I just felt like there were an awful lot of stories in this one where I could barely follow what was going on let alone connect with the narrative. I’ll give the next volume a try though, Not as good as I hoped it would be; the most engaging stories in this collection were actually all ones I’d read previously. I just felt like there was a lack of stories I could relate to, which seemed odd for a collection of trans spec fic, and while I don’t expect to connect with every story in any anthology, I just felt like there were an awful lot of stories in this one where I could barely follow what was going on let alone connect with the narrative. I’ll give the next volume a try though, maybe that will be better!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Rebe

    I primarily read SFF and a fair amount of it, so I'm always wary of short-story collections by multiple authors - not unusual to find one story that's really well written, then a few misses in terms of writing/editing. So, I checked out Transcendent with tempered expectations. I was more than pleasantly surprised; I really enjoyed this collection! I'm not sure how to describe the stories, except to say I was sad when I realized I had reached the end. It looks like there is a series of these anth I primarily read SFF and a fair amount of it, so I'm always wary of short-story collections by multiple authors - not unusual to find one story that's really well written, then a few misses in terms of writing/editing. So, I checked out Transcendent with tempered expectations. I was more than pleasantly surprised; I really enjoyed this collection! I'm not sure how to describe the stories, except to say I was sad when I realized I had reached the end. It looks like there is a series of these anthologies, lucky me (and lucky you!)

  18. 5 out of 5

    Em

    Several of the stories in here are fantastic! Others weren't as engaging for me. Some of my favorites include: Nino Cipri's "The shape of my name" Everett Maroon's "Treasure acre" Bogi Takacs's "The need for overwhelming sensation" B R Sanders's "The scraper's muse" E Saxey's "The librarian's dilemma" Margarita Tenser's "Chosen" A. Merc Rustad's "Where monsters dance" Molly Tanzer's "The thing on the cheerleading squad" Several of the stories in here are fantastic! Others weren't as engaging for me. Some of my favorites include: Nino Cipri's "The shape of my name" Everett Maroon's "Treasure acre" Bogi Takacs's "The need for overwhelming sensation" B R Sanders's "The scraper's muse" E Saxey's "The librarian's dilemma" Margarita Tenser's "Chosen" A. Merc Rustad's "Where monsters dance" Molly Tanzer's "The thing on the cheerleading squad"

  19. 4 out of 5

    W.L. Bolm

    This is a much needed collection. I agree that the stories were a mixed bag, but I enjoyed the majority of them, and the ones I didn't like were more because of style than anything else. The stories represent a wide variety of sci fi and fantasy; I've read or listened to a few in other publications/podcasts. I definitely recommend this book. This is a much needed collection. I agree that the stories were a mixed bag, but I enjoyed the majority of them, and the ones I didn't like were more because of style than anything else. The stories represent a wide variety of sci fi and fantasy; I've read or listened to a few in other publications/podcasts. I definitely recommend this book.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Gabriel Vidrine

    I wasn’t quite sure how to rate this book. On one hand, it’s transgender fiction, and it deserves all the stars. On the other...there were some stories I just didn’t “get.” Maybe that’s a flaw on my part, as short stories tend not to be my favorite. In all, though, I enjoyed most of them.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Dana Neily

    4.5. A well put together collection of affirming, exploratory, and diverse SFF stories by and about trans people. As not a huge sci-fi reader I really enjoyed the majority of these stories and appreciated the variety. My favourite is the first one written by Nino Cipri.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Kerry

    amazing stories!!!!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie

    For a TCG article.

  24. 5 out of 5

    B. Zelkovich

    I enjoyed every story in this collection. Several were mind-blowing. Short shorts and longer pieces alike, I found so much that felt familiar and yet brand new. An absolutely wonderful anthology.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Beata

    Some stories were great, some just... confusing.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jessy

    An excellent collection. My favorite stories were Nino Cipri's "the shape of my name", A. Merc Rustad's "where monsters dance", and Alexis A. Hunter's "be not unequally yoked". An excellent collection. My favorite stories were Nino Cipri's "the shape of my name", A. Merc Rustad's "where monsters dance", and Alexis A. Hunter's "be not unequally yoked".

  27. 4 out of 5

    KC

    Solid sci-fi. Give it a read!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Travis

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Another random discovery. I checked it in and thought it might be worth reading as something a bit different from my usual range. As with most short story collections, rather hit-or-miss, but generally enjoyable. The shape of my name: A well done little time-travel story. into the waters I rode down: Not a bad story, but very short; I wanted more context for the events. Also, I can't tell if this is a story that is more symbolic of trans issues, or if the main character is trans; a single referenc Another random discovery. I checked it in and thought it might be worth reading as something a bit different from my usual range. As with most short story collections, rather hit-or-miss, but generally enjoyable. The shape of my name: A well done little time-travel story. into the waters I rode down: Not a bad story, but very short; I wanted more context for the events. Also, I can't tell if this is a story that is more symbolic of trans issues, or if the main character is trans; a single reference to feeling something in her balls is the only indication that she might not be a cis-woman. Everything beneath you: A good story marred by ambiguities in the end. Who is the narrator talking to? And did the narrator's wish lead to literal gender/shape-changing powers, because if only metaphorical it feels a week choice, since people in the world already had some notion of ability to go against gender norms Actually, not sure it is worth commenting on all of them. Most were good and imaginative, some less so. The editor's intro says that cisgender people won't get it, and that is right for me at least. The are enjoyable stories and I like diversity in an abstract way, but don't relate to the sense of gender and identity that is on display in these stories.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Rey

    A great collection of transgender stories! It's a great, diverse collection of transgender fiction that tore me away from a much needed break from reality. There are stories filled with beautiful magic, imaginative prose, awws, and lots of courage and determination. This collection didn't disappoint. A great collection of transgender stories! It's a great, diverse collection of transgender fiction that tore me away from a much needed break from reality. There are stories filled with beautiful magic, imaginative prose, awws, and lots of courage and determination. This collection didn't disappoint.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jay

    1.5 -- In short: boring, florid, and generally not an enjoyable collection. Literally all my notes for this mention being bored and having trouble finding and/or following the plots of the extremely flowery writing. I'm sure there are people who can get some, or even a lot of, enjoyment from this book, but it did nothing for me. 1.5 -- In short: boring, florid, and generally not an enjoyable collection. Literally all my notes for this mention being bored and having trouble finding and/or following the plots of the extremely flowery writing. I'm sure there are people who can get some, or even a lot of, enjoyment from this book, but it did nothing for me.

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