Women and POC in Fantasy and Science Fiction

A little while ago, inspired to dig deeper by some incredibly interesting individuals on my twitter feed, I encountered some fantastic lists of book recommendations that highlight the talents of both women and POC that are creating some top-notch fantasy and science fiction offerings. These folks represent some of the most frequently overlooked, but most original and insightful, creators of our time; though if the more recent spell of Hugo Awards are anything to go by, things are very slowly changing to appreciate them more fully.

I’d like to list a few of my absolute personal favourites first, then I’ll let you sift through the wonderful and very comprehensive lists that have been complied elsewhere. Please join me in celebrating and supporting these wonderful authors.

Nnedi Okorafor

This lady is a force to be reckoned with. Creator of the Binti Trilogy, the first of which won both the Hugo and Nebula Awards for Best Novella, which is a imaginative and powerful take on the science fiction genre. If you’re an avid reader, her work is a must-have on your bookshelf/kindle. You can read more about her at nnedi.com or on Twitter @Nnedi.

N.K. Jemisin

She is as a prolific fantasy writer as I’ve ever seen, a Hugo award-winner with three series under her belt (The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms trilogy, the Dreamblood duology and the Broken Earth trilogy), and deals deftly with themes of cultural conflict and oppression. And this just in, her book The Fifth Season is about to be brought to life by TNT. You can read more about her at nkjemisin.com or on Twitter @nkjemisin.

Kameron Hurley

Kameron Hurley is the author of the essay collection The Geek Feminist Revolution, which contains the Hugo-Award winning essay “We Have Always Fought.” Her science-fantasy noir series, the Bel Dame Apocrypha, earned her the Sydney J. Bounds Award for Best Newcomer and the Kitschy Award for Best Debut Novel. You can read more about her at kameronhurley.com or on Twitter @KameronHurley.

V.E. Schwab

Indie bestselling author of more than a dozen books, including Vicious, the Shades of Magic series, and This Savage Song. Her work has received critical acclaim, been featured by EW and The New York Times. You can read more about her at veschwab.com or on Twitter @veschwab.


External Lists

Here are a few lists I’ve managed to stumble across that offer a wealth of new authors and their work to fall in love with. I hope you enjoy:

Tor.com – Making Lists: Mindblowing SF by Women and People of Color (this is probably the most complete and impressive of the lists.

Goodreads List – Fantasy Novels by Women of Color

Buzzfeed – 19 Science-Fiction And Fantasy Novels By Women Of Color You Must Read (I’m sorry for quoting Buzzfeed, though in its defense its a decent list)


Whilst by no means are these lists exhaustive, they do a pretty incredible job of highlighting some wonderful books. If there are any women or POC authors you’re passionate about and want to recommend, let me know!

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