‘To the people of privilege
You will survive your discomfort while reading this book
But many like me, who sit dangerously at various intersections of identity,
Will not survive long enough for you to complete the last page
What will you do?’
So begins Catherine Hernandez’ near future dystopia Crosshairs. It took my breath away. Just as Kiran Millwood Hargrave’s The Mercies did the first time I read it. Literally winded. Awed by the generosity, resilience & clarity of our storytellers, how they crack the world open for us if we would but dare to look.
Here are a few shatteringly good works of fiction -Gabriela Garcia will show you Cuba and the women of Cuba as no headline could, there is eco-fiction from Tara June Winch, The Yield is a book of traditions and legacies that reclaims an Australia so many remain intent on erasing, and there is Sarvat Hasin's fresh, epic take on the perennial problem of loving one's muse. Salena Godden takes on life, death and all that's in between with scintillating, poetic prose, while Torrey Peters offers us Detransition, Baby a sharp novel of family - chosen and longed for.
Read the world. Honour your storytellers.