We’re honored to host a cover reveal today for A THOUSAND BEGINNINGS AND ENDINGS, an anthology edited by WNDB’s own Ellen Oh and Elsie Chapman and featuring stories from a diverse group of talented authors. Congratulations!
More information from the publisher:
Star crossed lovers, meddling immortals, feigned identities, battles of wits, and dire warnings. These are the stuff of fairy tale, myth, and folklore that have drawn us in for centuries.
Fifteen bestselling and acclaimed authors reimagine the folklore and mythology of East and South Asia in short stories that are by turns enchanting, heartbreaking, romantic, and passionate.
Compiled by We Need Diverse Books’s Ellen Oh and Elsie Chapman, the authors included in this exquisite collection are: Renee Ahdieh, Sona Charaipotra, Preeti Chhibber, Roshani Chokshi, Aliette de Bodard, Melissa de la Cruz, Julie Kagawa, Rahul Kanakia, Lori M. Lee, E. C. Myers, Cindy Pon, Aisha Saeed, Shveta Thakrar, and Alyssa Wong.
A mountain loses her heart. Two sisters transform into birds to escape captivity. A young man learns the true meaning of sacrifice. A young woman takes up her mother’s mantle and leads the dead to their final resting place. From fantasy to science fiction to contemporary, from romance to tales of revenge, these stories will beguile readers from start to finish. For fans of Neil Gaiman’s Unnatural Creature sand Ameriie’s New York Times–bestselling Because You Love to Hate Me.
(The DM and I are playing a two-person campaign. I play a 13-year-old half-elf bard, who likes to get carried away in her own ideas. I often have her make mistakes, that I know are mistakes, because she would do them anyway. My character and her brother have just been ambushed and nearly killed by a group of cultists who they’ve been on the run from after learning too much about them.)
Bard (to brother): We need to be in disguise! They’re looking for a half-elf brother and sister… I guess I could go in disguise as a boy.
DM: How do you do that?
Me OOC: I’m going to cut my hair, cut my dress into a shirt, and cut off my lacey sleeves so I just look like I’m wearing a tunic-thingy…
DM: Roll for charisma to see how your disguise turns out.
Me: And oh, I know! After I cut my hair, I’m going to try to sew it into a beard!
DM: Do you know how to sew? Do you even have a needle?
Me: I have sealing wax.
DM: …If you roll high enough, I’ll give it to you.
(I roll a 4.)
DM: You look like a little girl with a bunch of glued-together hair on your face.
(After enough people burst out laughing at the sight of my character and her made-up tragic backstory that she and her brother are star-crossed lovers who ran away from their families to get married, she realizes her disguise doesn’t cut it and finds a shop that sells costumes to theater troupes. She ends up with loose-fitting clothes and a chest binder.)
DM: All right, this is definitely better, but roll for it.
Me: Wait. Are there fake beards for sale??
DM: Seriously? You’re still set on the stupid beard thing? Sure, there are beards for sale, but if you put one on you’re gonna have to roll like ten points higher than otherwise.
Me: I’m doing it anyway!
(I roll a nat 20.)
DM: *facepalm* Fine, you look like an anorexic dwarf.
(The DM is still spiteful about this, and shows it by having every single NPC who finds out about the disguise comment that the beard looks stupid.)
‘Why can’t we be together?’ She knew the answer already, of course. But, she wanted to hear him say it.
‘Because I’ll hurt you and you’ll hurt me. Sometimes, the pain is worth it, but it never would be for us. I love you so much and I refuse to ruin that. We might be happy for a bit, but we would end up hating each other. And I can’t let myself, but more so, selfishly, I can’t let you hate me.’
She was always in awe at the mention of books. Mere reference to a good book would take her onto the path of an endless conversation that winded through the roads of towns and places which she has visited through the pages.
The sparkle in her eyes as she talks about the characters as if they are her dear friends; the way in which her voice would fill with so much intensity while describing the events; and the way in which she feels so full of life, makes it seem all the more real and hence can’t go unnoticed. It is as if she gets transported to a whole different world and I have always been glad when she has taken me with her.
The union of two of the things that I love the most in this whole universe, books and her, is truly mesmerizing. It’s fascinating to travel through those pages with her, just like Violet and Finch; or Hazel and Augustus; or Alaska and Miles or Tessa and Jem or Will. It never gets enough and I’ll continue to do that as long as there will books and her in this world…
If I could just erase that one day then I wouldn’t have to go through the emptiness of losing you, and you’d still be around.
I told you I would never want to lose a friend like you, but maybe I was too soft. Only if you knew that I still wish to have you around, that I still consider you as my friend.
I believe, everyone who walks into our lives knows a part of us, you knew that part of me, which I had left behind somewhere, and I still am thankful for bringing it back. I could never bring myself to hate you, or even blame you for anything, all I needed was a clear justification for our actions, but in the process we lost each other.
I’ve lost you once, and I don’t remember how it felt like having you listen to me, but even now I know there’s something missing, I know a lot was left unsaid.
I don’t know if you ever feel like turning back to me or no, but I’m sure that the second time you come around, we both won’t be the same and I hope we both won’t repeat the same mistake again, and when it comes to talking about the Stars and the moon, I won’t have to think twice before searching your name.
I hope you’re around, for I know that you and I have fallen deeply for the magic that the universe persist, for every thing that others won’t understand, but with you it won’t be that difficult.
I hope, second time when you come around, the time would be in our favour, that we’d be right to each other. I wouldn’t mind if that takes long, I’d be fine even if it won’t ever happen, but I’d not want the same mistake to repeat again, I’d not want to lose you, yet again.