This anthology is a collection of short stories by trans and nonbinary authors about trans and nonbinary characters, and Capricious’ ninth issue is stellar.
I received a digital reviewers copy of Capricious: Gender Diverse Pronouns Issue from the editor in exchange for an honest review, and honestly, I loved it. I found out about this book because I follow several of the authors on Twitter, and I knew I’d want to read it. Some of them are on the nonbinary creators list I made a few months ago.
When I was offered a review copy, I was thrilled. I fell in love with every one of these stories in their own way.
Here’s the description:
These ten stories (all of which use gender diverse pronouns) are stories of love, fear, transformation, and the journeys we must sometimes take. Stories of those whose gender changes, whose gender is undecided, whose gender does not exist, or whose gender is pivotal to their self. Stories set in our own world, in far-away galaxies, or in worlds of fairy tale and myth, and stories which introduce us to ghosts, merfolk, dragons, and aliens, to strangers, to communities, and to ourselves. (Via Goodreads)
The one that has stuck with me the most was A.E. Provost’s “Sandals Full of Rainwater.” This was the story of Piscrandiol finding a new family in a new country, learning a new language and finding the best words for themself.
One quote particularly stood out to me as both an emotional and physical truth.
“Some things you carry around with you no matter what, because… Well, maybe they’re heavy, but they lift you up, too, right?”
Other stories, like Penny Stirling’s “Walking the Wall of Papered Peaces,” were so lyrical it made you feel like you were reading a painting.
“Love can be in the bedroom, but it is not governed by it. Love is that you always smile at me at breakfast, love is when you see my hair is down and fetch me painkillers, the way we sit in silence together for a whole afternoon. Love is how you trust me more than any other person, trust me not to hurt you —and yet— love is you caring.”
The only story I didn’t fall in love with was SL Byrne’s “The Thing With Feathers” near the end of the collection. It didn’t flow as well into the book as the others did. There were a few plot points that just didn’t work for me, but that’s the beauty of anthologies.
There’s always going to be something that you won’t love. The good news is, they’ll also contain something that you will.
Overall, it is a strong, beautiful anthology that I think will be loved by many. I highly recommend you purchase a copy for yourself on Amazon.