diversebooks2k16

theguardian.com
Top 10 books by transgender authors featuring trans characters
Here’s a list of the best trans YA and middle grade books by trans and non-binary authors

“Cisgender authors can write great trans characters, but trans authors live the experiences of their characters every day and their voices need to be the loudest on trans issues, argues teen writer John Hansen.”

This is the seventh installment in a series of book recommendations, all of which will introduce you to kickass women from mythologies around the world, all of them written by women. All books listed had to pass the following criteria: 

  • Be written by a woman
  • Be fictional
  • Have a woman as (one of) the protagonist(s)
  • Feature Russian or Slavic mythology

This recommendation list comes on the heels of the Asian mythology rec list, because I really wanted to include Russia (which falls under both Asian and Slavic mythology), but I wanted to keep the country as a whole in one post. @kostromas (x) and @lamus-dworski (x) (x) were kind enough to take some time answering my questions.

While I mainly looked for books ft. Russian and Slavic mythologies (I used this Wiki file as a measure to determine the Slavic region), I also include a few books with other origins, such as Norway and various Eastern European countries, because I think - out of all the recommendation posts I have done and plan to do - this is the one they would fit best in. 

Please note as well that there is a lot of overlap among most of these cultures, with different versions of a character appearing in many, so some of the below classifications may be rather arbitrary (I usually go with what’s 1) listed in the summary, then see if 2) the writer specifies a culture, or if 3) readers had helpful input).

UPDATE: It’s been brought to my attention that this post could do with some clarification and additions. To start with, I’d like to address the small number of books listed under Slavic. I don’t mean to say that only the countries listed are Slavic countries. The list is as limited as it is because I found it difficult to locate books that met all the above listed criteria, and an unconscious fifth - that they be written in English. If you take out any one of those criteria, a larger pool of books would open itself up, and I encourage you to consider that as an option.

While I understand that limiting these lists to books written in or translated into English is not ideal, I also don’t think I am the right person to judge which books written in Slavic languages should be included, as I am not Slavic and don’t speak or read Slavic languages. Readers should be aware though, that reading a book featuring Slavic mythologies or cultures, which are not written by someone who identifies as Slavic, may promote a stereotypical or otherwise harmful depiction of those cultures. 

Moreover, those authors who do hail from the relevant region are more likely to be published if they don’t push the envelope too much to be acceptable for a generic Western audience. Therefore, additional reading of books on and / or featuring Slavic mythologies or cultures can aid in understanding the context of these tales. I have listed a couple of books in the honourable mentions with that in mind, and I have decided to add an asterisk (*) to all works written by an author who is confirmed as hailing from the region their work is set in. Typically, I’ve listed one or two books per author, but do check for their other writing.

Finally, I should add that I might have made a mistake in including Russia in this list. This was done because I wanted to keep the country in one post, rather than splitting it between the Asian list and this one. The Asian one was sufficiently long I didn’t want to add it there, but I might have been better off creating a completely separate list for it rather than including it here.

With the above reasons in mind, I have decided to move the Slavic section up, I have added a number of entries throughout, and expanded the resources list at the bottom.

Slavic

Russia

Other regions (not Slavic or Russian)

Undefined / speculative

Historical fiction

Comics & graphic novels

Some collected tales

Poetry

Honourable mentions

Other lists you can consult

If you have any suggestions for other Slavic and / or Russian women who deserve more attention (and a corresponding book), or which mythology should definitely be in this series, drop me a line!

Other kickass women in mythology: women in Greek mythology | women in Egyptian mythology & historywomen in Mesoamerican mythologies | women in Celtic mythologies | women in Native American mythologies | women in Asian mythologies | women in pirate lore & history

goodreads.com
Non-Binary and Genderqueer Characters in YA Fiction

A collection of books that include non-binary, genderqueer, or other gender-variant characters.

DIVERSE 👏 REPRESENTATION 👏 IS 👏 A 👏 RIGHT 👏 NOT 👏 A 👏 PRIVILEGE 👏

goodreads.com
2015 YA/MG Books With POC Leads
204 books based on 155 votes.

Diversify your bookshelf with this great list of young adult and middle grade novels featuring POC protagonists released last year.

goodreads.com
Asexuality in YA Fiction (40 books)
Books with characters that identify as asexual or characters that could be read as asexual. Also books that mention asexuality.
goodreads.com
YA Books on Greek Mythology
Get to know Greek culture with these 88 books.

Here’s also a list for: historical fiction set in Ancient Greece.

goodreads.com
38 YA Books That Pass The Bechdel Test
A list of books we all need in our lives.
theguardian.com
Fight back! Why we need angry girls in YA
Real young adults need to see fictional ones self-destructing or fighting back because it’s ok to be angry.

I posted an article yesterday about reader’s seeing certain emotions more negatively in female characters than male, and one of those is anger. So I’ve found an article that explores why female anger shouldn’t be judged.

“We need stressed-out, angry teenage girls in YA fiction to mirror real life. We need to send out the Dahlian message to our angry girl readers: you are not alone.”

Anger is a reasonable and natural emotion for any gender, so it makes no sense for it to be looked at more negatively in female characters.

“Real young adults need to see fictional ones self-destructing or fighting back because it’s ok to be angry at the world’s injustices. It’s ok to shout and scream and cry. I think it’s ok to want revenge too. Natural, even.”

So don’t judge female character’s more harshly for being angry, or any similar emotion. There’s plenty to be angry about for all genders, so why are only females not allowed?

buzzfeed.com
34 Young Adult Novels To Diversify Your Bookshelf
Add more color to your shelf with these YA novels.
By Zakiya Jamal