Book RecsApr 10, 2020

Diverse SFF series for binge reading (Part 1)

Diverse SFF series

As I’m currently in the middle of binge-reading a series, and I know a lot of people love binge-reading too or at least love to wait until a series is complete, I thought it would be a good idea to make a list of diverse science fiction and fantasy series that are already complete.

When first putting together a list, I realized how many diverse (adult) SFF series there are, so I’m calling this “Part 1”, with at least one other part coming sometime soon, to get this one out quicker and not take forever to put the post together. And obviously some series will be complete in the next months and years, so there’ll always be reason to put together a new one of these.

As some prefer the shorter or longer series, or just to help find what currently suits your mood and time, I’m going to order them by how many books are in the series.

If you want any details on what makes any of these series diverse, feel free to ask, but overall: they feature at least one (but in most if not all cases more than one) main character who is of color and/or queer and/or has a disability.

Duologies

If you want a real quick binge-read, these are the ones for you. While I personally prefer longer series, sometimes it’s nice to read a duology, basically reading just one big(ger) book.

Cover of American Hippo by Sarah Gailey

American Hippo / River of Teeth by Sarah Gailey

American Hippo is the bind-up of the two novellas River of Teeth + Taste of Marrow, a series about an alternate America that’s kind of like a Western but with hippos! I still wish there were more books in the series because the characters were so damn precious.

Persons Non Grata by Cassandra Khaw

A set of two novellas as well, this Lovecraftian horror series features a time-traveling alien detective who fights evil, both the monstrous as well as the human kind.
Cover of Hunger Makes the Wolf

The Ghost Wolves by Alex Wells

A mercenary biker gang on a strange planet fighting an evil corp with the help of some awesome magic. A super fun duology featuring kickass ladies.

Trilogies

As someone who loves longer series, I’m sad the trilogies are so popular LOL BUT many of my favorite series are trilogies, so I’m not really complaining. They do make a quick, fun binge-read.

Bel Dame Apocrypha by Kameron Hurley

Oh, just one of my absolute favorite series, featuring my favorite anti-hero, bisexual badass babe, Nyx. Set on a planet where war has been going on for centuries, it’s bloody, it’s dark and it’s full of strange magic.

Worldbreaker Saga by Kameron Hurley

This is one of the most epic high (portal) fantasy series ever. Multiple parallel versions of the same world (including the people) annihilating one another. Very dark. Very fucked up. Very good.

Shades of Magic by V.E. Schwab

Multiple parallel Londons, blood magic, pirates,… I feel like I don’t need to say much about this one, do I?

The Arcadia Project by Mishell Baker

A unique take on urban fantasy’s fairies, The Arcadia Project features a parallel reality from which creatures come to our own world, creatures straight out of a fairy tale.

Centenal Cycle by Malka Ann Older

A scifi/dystopian series about a global micro-democracy. Might be a bit of a mind-fuck right now, it being all about politics and elections.

The Broken Earth by N.K. jemisin

An interesting mix of fantasy and scifi, this series is about a future Earth periodically wracked with disasters and those trying to keep alive, some of them being able to draw magical powers from reservoirs of the Earth.

Wayfarers by Becky Chambers

Three standalone, but connected books, this is a series about found families having adventures in space.

Indrana War by K.B. Wagers

Gun-runner turned princess, Hail the space pirate has to take over the throne after her family was assassinated, entering a world full of courtly conspiracies and plots, always just one step away from being killed herself.

The Hollow Gods by rebecca Levene

“Smiler’s Fair: the great moving carnival where any pleasure can be had, if you’re willing to pay the price”. It can change your life, and it will.

Dominion of the Fallen by Aliette De Bodard

A gothic fantasy series, set in Paris, during a magical war, featuring magicians, fallen angels and more.

Eternal Sky by Elizabeth Bear

A high fantasy where “a sorcerer-prince seeks world domination for the glory of his God”.

The Interdependency by John Scalzi

A space opera, where distant planets are connected by and dependent onĀ  “the Flow” which suddenly starts to collapse, cutting off worlds from the rest of humanity.

Empires of Dust by Anna Smith Spark

Believing that a new empire can only be built from the ashes of the old, a man hires a company of soldiers to kill the emperor. And part of that company is a boy with a dark secret.

Tetralogies

Wow, series of four are SO very rare? i feel like most series are either trilogies or way longer (will never forget the fact that Shades of Magic could have been a four book series….).

Tensorate by JY Yang

A fantasy with elemental magic, with an oppressive monarchy called the Protectorate, facing a revolution by a rebel group.
Cover of Wake of Voltures by Lila Bowen

The Shadow by Lila Bowen

A western-like fantasy, where humans only really see supernatural beasts once they have killed one.

Five and more books

Now we’re coming to my favorite kind of series. Sadly, they are kind of rare so I’m even more happy about the ones that exist.

cover of Three Parts Dead

The Craft sequence by Max Gladstone (6 Books)

This series is more of a collection of standalones that can be read in different orders for different reading experiences (and might not actually be finished but you won’t be left hanging). It’s set in a fantasy world with lots of black magic, dead gods and pieces of your soul being currency.
Cover of Miriam Black by Chuck Wendig

Miriam Black by Chuck Wendig (6 Books)

This is one of my favorite urban fantasy series. Miriam, when touching someone, sees how they die. She’s one of my favorite anti-heroes.
(note: the MC is bi but it only becomes known in book 3 if I remember right)

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