GENDER BEND KING ARTHUR IN SPACE THAT IS QUEER AF!
If there is ever a book that had me truly shouting at it and yelling ‘No!’ and ‘Holy Crap!’ repeatedly because of its brillance and crazy plot twists it this one. Once & Future is hands down one of the best books I’ve read this. It’s diverse as hell and it’s about time!
I’ve been chased my whole life. As a fugitive refugee in the territory controlled by the tyrannical Mercer corporation, I’ve always had to hide who I am. Until I found Excalibur.
Now I’m done hiding.
My name is Ari Helix. I have a magic sword, a cranky wizard, and a revolution to start.
When Ari crash-lands on Old Earth and pulls a magic sword from its ancient resting place, she is revealed to be the newest reincarnation of King Arthur. Then she meets Merlin, who has aged backward over the centuries into a teenager, and together they must break the curse that keeps Arthur coming back. Their quest? Defeat the cruel, oppressive government and bring peace and equality to all humankind.
I don’t even know where to begin with my review of this book. For starters the most exciting aspect of this book is that it voice’s and reflects the diversity of the real life! And it’s done well, tactfully, intelligently. There’s no preaching here, no diversity for the sake of diversity. I think of how amazing it is to read these characters to those who have wanted for so long to see themselves in the cast of heroes in YA literature so fearlessly themselves.
You will laugh, you will cry, you will want to through the book at the wall, sit down for ten minutes questioning what the hell you just read and then pick it up becuase you must know what happens next.
Merlin is quite possibly my favourite character, purely for the comedy. The quips about past Arthurs and references to his story (there’s a few references from the Disney movie for sure) are fantastic and add to the obsurdity of this magical person in a sci-fi.
Ari is hand down a wild card and oh do I love how honest and unappologetically herself she is. She’s incredible but also questionable at times. But she posses a strength within her and endures so much for the sake of what is good and right and honourable. She’s the feminist hero the galaxy needs and the one who will fight totalitarian governments to free those under it’s rule.
Her knights of the round table are a ragtag bunch. You may think you know who each of them represent from the original knights, but fair warning, you really really don’t.
There are so many twists and turns you honestly cannot think you’ve worked it all out, because as soon as you think you have the rug gets pulled out from under you and you question everything. Once & Future is clever and meticulous in is deception and revealations.
As soon as I finished reading this I passed it to a coworker to read, simply becuase I feel that everyone who loves YA and Sci-Fi serioulsly needs to read this. It’s now been passed along from reader to reader serveral times now and every single person has agreed how wonderful they think Once & Future is. It’s an exciting time for YA and diverse voices and this book was a long time coming. But now that it’s here it sets the bar high, showing that diversity and representation is not difficult, or hard for readers, it is quite the opposite and makes for a far more interesting point of view in literature. So here’s to a LGBTQI+ book that packs a punch with a inter-stella cast of heroes.
The first in this aciton packed series I am beyond excited to read the follow up The Sword In The Stars in 2020.
SUMMARY Once & Future is clever and meticulous in is deception and revealations. Tastefully and tactifully it represents a range of identities and ethnicities that truly makes it an incredibly diverse read. LGBTQI+ , feminist and empowering Once & Future is one of the best YA Sci-Fi books of 2019.