Suggested Reading
Sirens is about the remarkable, diverse women in fantasy literature, and what better way to celebrate the achievements of women in fantasy literature than to read, read, read? The following list, which focuses on our 2021 theme of villains, is only a starting point for reading fantasy literature by and about women—but if you’re looking for works by our guests of honor, our Sirens Studio faculty, or fantasy works focused on our 2021 theme, we suggest you start here. (If you’re looking for a bit of a challenge instead, you might try our 2021 Sirens Reading Challenge.)

As with all great reading lists, some of these books were chosen for their influence, some for their ability to spark impassioned discussions, and some simply because they’re great reads!

If you’re looking to purchase these books, we hope you’ll consider using the links below to purchase them from the Sirens Bookshop store. Your purchase from Bookshop will provide economic support to both Sirens and independent bookstores around the United States!

Guests of Honor and Faculty - Theme Books


2020 Sirens Guests of Honor

Kinitra D. Brooks

Rin Chupeco

Sarah Gailey
Novellas and Novels

Short Fiction (a selection)
  • “Away with the Wolves” in Uncanny (2019) [read online]
  • “An Augmented Reality” in The Atlantic (2018) [read online]
  • “From the Void” in Shimmer (2018) [read online]
  • “Bread and Milk and Salt” in (2018) [read online]
  • “STET” in Fireside (2018) [read online]
  • “All the Stars Above the Sea” in Uncanny (2018) [read online]
  • “A Lady’s Maid” in B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy (2017) [read online]
  • “The Art of Asterculture” in (2017) [read online]

Nonfiction (a selection)
  • “What Makes a Story Queer?” in B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy (2019) [read online]
  • “Fear of the Female Voice” in (2017) [read online]
  • “The Hubris of Icarus: Women Who Fly into the Sun” in (2017) [read online]
  • “A Woman, Explaining Things” in B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy (2017) [read online]
  • “Why Millennials Yearn for Magical School” in Uncanny (2017) [read online]
  • “On Feasting” in B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy (2017) [read online]
  • “Facing Facts: American Identity Is Based on Alternate History” in (2017) [read online]
  • “Storytelling Through Costume: The Woman in White” in (2017) [read online]
  • “Mentally Ill Women Belong in Your Stories, Too” in (2016) [read online]
  • “Why We Write About Witches” in (2016) [read online]
  • “Do Better: Sexual Violence in SFF” in (2016) [read online]

Fonda Lee

Short Fiction

2020 Sirens Studio Guest of Honor

Joamette Gil
Power & Magic Press Titles

2020 Sirens Studio Faculty
(who have published work)

Please see above for works by Kinitra D. Brooks, Rin Chupeco, and Fonda Lee.

Casey Blair

Marie Brennan
Novellas and Novels


Anna-Marie McLemore

Guests of Honor and Faculty - Theme Books


2020 Villains Theme Books

Margaret Atwood

Leigh Bardugo

Kendare Blake

Kelly Barnhill

Melissa Bashardoust

Vera Brosgol

Kacen Callender

Sarwat Chadda

Alexandra Christo

April Daniels

Julie C. Dao

Delilah S. Dawson

Kelly Sue DeConnick, Emma Ríos & Jordie Bellair

Seth Dickinson

Jennifer Donnelly

Nicky Drayden

Maria Dahvana Headley

Shea Ernshaw

Louise Erdrich

Laure Eve

Tessa Gratton

Sarah Henning

Kameron Hurley

Shirley Jackson

Erika Johansen

Alaya Dawn Johnson

R. F. Kuang

Claire Legrand

Kelly Link

Marjorie Liu & Sana Takeda

Tehlor Kay Mejia

Alex Marshall

Cori McCarthy & Amy Rose Capetta

Marissa Meyer

Helen Oyeyemi

Ludmilla Petrushevskaya

Sarah Pinborough

Sarah Porter

Rory Power

C. J. Redwine

Dia Reeves

Emily Skrutskie

Angela Slatter

Caitlin Starling

Noelle Stevenson

Nova Ren Suma

Sabaa Tahir

Lynn Weingarten

Kiersten White

G. Willow Wilson

Guests of Honor and Faculty - Theme Books

Presented by Narrate Conferences, Inc.
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