Being Ace: An Anthology of Queer, Trans, Femme, and Disabled Stories of Asexual Love and Connection

Page Street. Oct. 2023. 352p. ed. by Dyer, Madeline, ed. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781645679561.
Gr 9 Up–Protagonists across the asexuality spectrum star in this collection of 14 short stories ranging from fantasy to science fiction to contemporary. An enchanted suit of armor poses as a fake fiancé and is bested by a would-be magistrate. A “magical ace” escorts someone through the woods to chat to their dead—and solve a murder mystery. A sex-repulsed monster hunter pushes back against the pressure to lose their virginity to become “full-fledged.” Whatever the story, each individual plot is unique. Mostly unified by coming out experiences, these narratives are ultimately affirming even when situations are difficult. Some stories are more engaging than others, but the breadth of asexual characters explored—by asexual creators, no less—is remarkable. Significantly, one story features a power wheelchair user, providing rare disability representation.
VERDICT This compelling collection offers readers so many opportunities to feel seen and connect. A first purchase for all teen collections.

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