realistic golem

A–Z Book Recs

@macrolit’s A–Z book recommendations seemed like a challenge and like a lot of fun, so here we go! I thought it would be hard to find each letter, but honestly it turned out to be more difficult to narrow it down for some of them. Where it was contentious, I chose the lesser-known, under-appreciated of the books up for each letter.

Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman – for people who loved American Gods, read this semi-sequel about the sons of Mr. Nancy. 

The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro – a story about memory and love set in a foggy, post-Arthur England. 

The Complete Cosmicomics by Italo Calvino – a collection of trippy, speculative fiction short stories. 

Dictionary of the Khazars by Milorad Pavić – for lovers of twisty, magical realist, tales who love Borges and are willing to put in some work.

Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire – a quick novella with excellent world building.

Ficciones by Jorge Luis Borges – my favorite short story collection of all time—the inventor’s spec fic and magical realist tales.

The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker – fans of The Night Circus and American Gods will enjoy this fantastical romance set in New York City.

Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things That Happened by Allie Brosh – hilarious and so relatable, especially for anyone who’s been through depression.

Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine – a magnificent, fun alternative world about the power of books and the danger of centralizing knowledge.

Just Kids by Patti Smith – a dark tale of artists falling in love in the artistic backchannels of the Village.

The Last Report of the Miracles at Little No Horse by Louise Erdrich – a magical realist tale by an own voices author.

Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town by Jon Krakauer – rough, but vital—Krakauer picks apart rape culture by telling the stories of women who tried to get justice.

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman – probably my favorite book of all time. an urban fantasy set in the underground of London.

Orlando by Virginia Woolf – in the 1920s, Woolf wrote a magical realist tale about with a gender-fluid MC. iconic. 

Paradise by Toni Morrison – one of morrison’s most underrated novels. a masterpiece about women sticking together.

Deltora Quest by Emily Rodda I struggled to find a Q ahaha, but I loved these books when I was younger!

The Refrigerator Monologues by Catherynne Valente – interconnected short stories about the women whose stories are refrigerated to further those of men in a comic books setting.

The Shell Collector by Anthony Doerr – short stories that changed the way i think about writing. they’re beautiful, magical realist, and haunting.

Things We Lost in the Fire: Stories by Mariana Enríquez – I didn’t sleep for days after reading these translated gothic horror tales.

Uprooted by Naomi Novik – a magical standalone about female friendship and an ancient power.

Van Gogh: The Life by Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith – a magnificent biography that speaks to the genius and madness of the artist.

Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor – brilliant, and was just optioned to become an HBO show!

Yes Please by Amy Poehler – this was a fun and funny memoir by Poehler that encourages the reader to be unabashedly themselves.

Zombies vs. Unicorns ed. by Holly Black – this book was fun. the title says it all: it’s full of stories about either zombies or unicorns.