leaflitter: (yuletide)
[personal profile] leaflitter
The whole reason I signed up for Yuletide was reading fic in fandoms I love, and discovering how much of it was written for Yuletide!

A quick pre-Yuletide roundup:

A Piece of the Continent, Hainish Universe: what Genly Ai did after Winter.

This story is astounding. First of all, it sounds like it was written fairly quickly and is somewhere in the realm between a long short story and a novella. Second, it's really really good. Several commenters say that it could be a Le Guin Hainish Cycle story, and I think in most ways it could be. Other than Genly, the characters are OCs, several vivid and fully fleshed.

I’ve read it enough times that I have noticed technical problems with the world-building, that has to be a good sign right? (Their reproductive strategy as described makes it impossible to maintain replacement rate. Also, the part with Kiyoshi Dan makes her sound like an old friend, and the vagaries of near-light speed travel make it unlikely to run into them again.)

This story has made its way into my heart, like many of Le Guin's own Hainish stories.

Hymn, The Handmaid's Tale: Serena Joy's story.

Warning for canon-appropriate (ie very high) levels of sexism, homophobia, and ableism, including violence and other abuse.

What feels like a realistic psychological/biographical portrait of Serena Joy: So that's my life as a Wife. It's definitely a better life from when there were Pornomarts on every corner and abortion clinics in every town. Women were never safe then. Now every woman has her place… But I have my regrets; we all do. Nothing is ever perfect on this earth. I'm a sinner, and subject to temptations of my own.

If you were ever tempted to sympathise with Fred at all, you won't be now.

The Veins of the Forest, Earthsea: in which young Azver, a warrior's son on Karego-At, discovers that all forests are one forest.

One of very surprisingly few fics featuring Azver. How is that? The warrior who became a wizard, the tree-root to Ged's sparrowhawk. Anyway. This is a lovely elegant little story that feels perfect. If Le Guin ever explores Azver's backstory more I may have trouble deciding which to believe more.

The Shadow on the King’s Roads, Strange and Norrell: Arabella Strange becomes the chaperon of the Misses Enderwhild of The Ladies of Grace Adieu. It’s nicely in keeping with the tone of JS&MN, and for that matter, with the style of magic in that universe.

I don't know that there can be enough Arabella in the world, especially Arabella coming to terms with magic and fairyland in her own way and at her own time.
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