Glitter + Ashes: Queer Tales of a World That Wouldn’t Die is an anthology of post-apocalyptic fiction centering queer joy and community in the face of disaster. What does hope look like when everything is lost? Now, more than ever, we need to revel in the bright spots amidst the darkness.
The twenty-three stories (and two poems) contained here, as well as the roleplaying game Dream Askew by Avery Alder, imagine queer community in myriad futures interrupted by collapse. Post-apocalyptic futures glittering and bleak, challenging and eerie.
Glitter + Ashes is here to hold up a torch. Come gather round the fire.
Author: Various Authors, ed. by Dave Ring
Genre: Queer Dystopian Post-apocalyptic Anthology
Rating: 4/5 stars
I don’t read a lot of dystopian stories but these post-apocalyptic stories were all unique and full of diversity. It was very refreshing to read such queer characters written so unapologetically by queer authors. I felt like I recognized people that I knew in many stories, and it made me feel at home in a way that I don’t often feel in the heteronormative society where I live.
I also loved that even though the world was ending, these stories were still full of hope and community. I don’t like the constantly bleak dystopian tropes that if society falls apart, then everyone will automatically become selfish in order to survive. I think that many people try to help each other even in the darkest situations. The queer community is a great example of this because LGBTQIA+ people have gone through so much oppression and times that felt like our world was ending, such as the AIDS epidemic. Despite seeing so many friends and loved ones die to a terrible disease, queer people joined together to help during the worst ravages of AIDS when governments and mainstream societies turned their backs on us. These strong community values were a big part of these stories. And I know that other marginalized communities also support each other in dark times, so I believe we can endure together.
Many of these stories were short, just a few pages, and some were a little roughly written. But I think the emotion behind the words carried them even when they weren’t perfect. I would love to read more.
Here is the book in my reading journal: