If you seriously think that Human vs Fae/Grisha is “racism” and you call it that repeatedly then you, my friend are shitting on the struggles countless people of colour

replied to your post “I don’t really know what to do about SJM anymore. Like, she was my 2nd…”

What line is it?? I’m ace and reading acowar and rather know how bad it is now :/

I made a post about it here when the book first came out.  Some people noticed it, like me, others didn’t. I can’t say how it will or won’t affect you, but it was pretty blatant acephobia.


Sarah Reads: Deathless

Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente

Koschei the Deathless is to Russian folklore what devils or wicked witches are to European culture: a menacing, evil figure; the villain of countless stories which have been passed on through story and text for generations. But Koschei has never before been seen through the eyes of Catherynne Valente, whose modernized and transformed take on the legend brings the action to modern times, spanning many of the great developments of Russian history in the twentieth century.

Deathless, however, is no dry, historical tome: it lights up like fire as the young Marya Morevna transforms from a clever child of the revolution, to Koschei’s beautiful bride, to his eventual undoing. Along the way there are Stalinist house elves, magical quests, secrecy and bureaucracy, and games of lust and power. All told, Deathless is a collision of magical history and actual history, of revolution and mythology, of love and death, which will bring Russian myth back to life in a stunning new incarnation.


Date Started: July 15th, 2017

Acquired: Public Library

Why I Picked It Up: Many of my friends, including @elenalanstova-morozova and @siderealscion have recommended Valente and her writing to me. It’s also a goal in my personal AND professional lives to read more about Russian folklore. After ACOWAR made mention of Koschei the Deathless, I definitely wanted a book starring him written by someone other than SJM. Thankfully, Deathless already exists! 

Why I Kept Reading: Holy macaroni, this prose is incredible! I literally said out loud to myself as I was reading last night, “This is amazing.” Valente captures the fairy tale narrative voice incredibly well, and I’m so into it! I’m going to have a really hard time picking a favorite line! Also, this is especially fun now that I can speak Russian. I nearly squealed in delight when Chainik appeared, because чайник translates to ‘teapot’ in English and I thought that was absolutely adorable. I can’t wait to read the rest of this and then recommend it to my Russian classmates and my teacher!

Stay Tuned for a Review!

I don’t really know what to do about SJM anymore. Like, she was my 2nd favorite author or something before acowar, and I could have lived with the disappointment of it if it weren’t for that one acephobic line in chap 3. I’ve only recently realized I am asexual and am going through a really rough time right now and having internalized acephobia (cause yay anxiety.) towards myself and I just keep thinking about how I looked up to her, writing-wise. I keep trying to let it go but I can’t. (1/?)

(SJM anon) And I can’t let it go because I keep seeing people praise acowar because of the diversity which is great and all that but I can’t get over that line. (I really want to thank you while I am at it, because I saw that post you posted about the line before I got there and saw it myself, and I really don’t know what I would have done if I saw it myself first. Thank you.) I just keep seeing people praise it and I don’t know what to do because no one says anything or mentions it (2/?)

(SJM anon) And this has been driving me crazy because I can’t forget or let it go because my tumblr is filled with it and the book is literally in front of my face half of the time on my shelf. I just needed to say all of this to someone I know has a chance of understanding, because I mentioned it to one of my friends and she was like ‘oh’ but didn’t really understand why it was bothering me so much. I just don’t know what to do about all of this (thanks again I really love your blog) (3/3)

Hey, nonnie. I totally, completely understand this. When I read that line in AC0WAR, I honestly felt like I’d been slapped in the face. And I immediately felt bad for feeling that way. Was I overreacting? Surely it wasn’t that big a deal? But it hurt. Badly. And I had to remind myself that I wasn’t wrong for being hurt by it. 

I wasn’t surprised that SJM would consider not wanting sex weird, but I didn’t expect her to consider people who weren’t attracted to others as soulless. I was totally blindsided by it, and I’m honestly so glad that my post was helpful to you (I made it expressly for that purpose–to keep other ace readers from being hit like I was). It cut deep, because I had spent a year of my life praising her and being dedicated to her fandom. There’d been warning signs that I really should have paid closer attention to.

And the response was very hostile, not just to me but to anyone who pointed out that line as acephobic. The general attitude was that we shouldn’t be upset because of one line, that we were overreacting, etc. I felt terrible for being put in the position of having to defend my identity against something written by my favorite author at the time. It honestly felt like a huge betrayal. I’d given so much of myself in support of her books, and it was like getting stabbed in the back for thanks. 

Anyway, all of this is to say that you’re not wrong for having these feelings! It’s entirely understandable! And even if you have loved her books and supported her, nothing is making you continue to do so. Do remember that you can customize your tumblr experience. You can block or blacklist the acowar tags. You can unfollow certain bloggers. It doesn’t make you a bad person. I’ve had to do that a lot since AC0WAR came out, and tumblr has been a lot better for me because of it. 

It can be really hard to move on. I feel you there, 100%. Dealing with the internalized acephobia is a bitch, too, so if you ever need someone to talk to about that, I’m here. I would try, if you have the heart, to find other books to attach yourself to. I recommend Every Heart a Doorway because the MC is explicitly asexual and it felt so good to read that! I’m also looking forward to reading Tash Hearts Tolstoy because it also has an asexual lead! Give yourself to things that affirm you, not things that hurt you. I know our pickings our slim, but it gets better by the year. You’re not alone, and I believe you’ve got the strength to move on from this hurt. My ask box is open whenever you need it. ❤