Nnedi Okorafor, Lauren Beukes and Sofia Somatar have been listed in Entertainment Weekly‘s list of “27 Female Authors Who Rule Sci-Fi and Fantasy Now.” The list is a response to “a much-maligned National Review article, which dismissed the Bechdel Test and wrote off an absence of women in blockbuster films as a result of the lack of women writing blockbuster-worthy stories.” And this is coming after Nnedi recently announced that her novel, Who Fears Death, is being adapted for a HBO series with Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martins as executive producer.
Here is what Entertainment Weekly said about our favourite authors.
Okorafor excels at writing both adult and YA fiction, weaving together science fiction, fantasy, and magical realism in an African setting, heralded for her ability to intertwine that culture into her work. Her first adult novel, Who Fears Death, won the 2011 World Fantasy Award for Best Novel. Just this week, she announced it’s been optioned by HBO with George R.R. Martin set to executive produce – the network may not have to look very far for the next Game of Thrones.
South African novelist Lauren Beukes nearly defies her genre, having jumped between fantasy, urban thriller, cyberpunk dystopia, and more. Broken Monsters, released in 2014, was described as an “urban Grimm’s fairytale,” while 2013’s The Shining Girls tracks a time-traveling serial killer. If you’re looking for something that stretches the limits of genre, Beukes’ novels are just the thing (and if you need something even more off the beaten path, she’s also written short stories, nonfiction, comics, and more.)
Drawing on her background as a Somali-American and a language scholar, Samatar stunned readers with 2013’s A Stranger in Olandria and its sequel, 2016’s The Winged Histories. The sequel follows four women caught up in different sides of a rebellion – using a fantasy lens to examine feminist and anti-colonialist themes. A Stranger in Olandria won the British Fantasy Award and World Fantasy Award, while its sequel was a 2017 Locus Award finalist.
For more on African sci-fi and fantasy, check out the brilliant inaugural Nommo Awards shortlist announced in April, an initiative of the African Speculative Fiction Society (ASFS) to recognise the finest fantasy or science fiction works by Africans.
See Entertainment Weekly‘s full list HERE.