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Books that you think aros would enjoy

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We've had some threads discussing books without romance and books with aro characters. Perhaps it would be fun to also have a more general book recommendation thread. Recommend any book you want. The only rule is that you must write at least a few sentences on why you think this book might appeal to aros.

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I recommend anything by Zadie Smith. She writes brilliantly about friendship and also writes very honestly about sex, but I've never read anything of hers that really focuses on romantic love. In one of her short pieces, she admits to having no interest in writing conventional love stories.

 

My two favourites are:

 

The novel NW (focuses on a friendship between two women who grow up together but take different paths in life).

The short story Sentimental Education (a coming-of-age type story that shows she can write male friendship just as well as female friendship).

 

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So my favorite book series is "the Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel" by Michael Scott. There isn't any romance in it at all. (or if there is it was not a big enough deal for me to notice it) The series is about twin teenagers who get caught up in a magical world by complete accident or so they think. I would recommend it anyone, but especially arospec people, because of the lack of romance and the focus on platonic relationships. (both familial relationships and friendships) 

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On 3/20/2020 at 11:27 PM, Maximus said:

So my favorite book series is "the Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel" by Michael Scott. There isn't any romance in it at all. (or if there is it was not a big enough deal for me to notice it) The series is about twin teenagers who get caught up in a magical world by complete accident or so they think. I would recommend it anyone, but especially arospec people, because of the lack of romance and the focus on platonic relationships. (both familial relationships and friendships) 

Before reading your comment I've never considered that Nicholas Flamel was a real historical person. I've never seen his name mentioned outside of Harry Potter :D

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I just finished The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers and found it very aro-friendly.

It's basically a space opera, focusing on a multi-species crew who fly around creating wormholes. There's a real found-family dynamic amongst the crew, with a couple of particularly strong male-female friendships. There are a few romantic relationships but none are boring or cheesy.

SPOILERS

Interestingly, one is an f/f relationship between a human woman and an alien whose species doesn't have any drive to pair up. The alien (Sissix) could easily be read as aromantic and/or polyamorous.

 

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Ancillary Justice, by Ann Leckie.

This is science fiction, the main character is a ship-AI, and ships do not desire the same types of relationships as most humans do. There is love, described in an undeniable manner, while still not being what we think of as romantic love. Very real, and still non-romamtic. I really connected to that, from an aromantic perspective.

The book is more known for how the big empire (that the main character is from) don't really have gender. Everyone is referred to with she/her pronouns and the opinion there is that if you have complete gender equality anyway there is no reason to note the differences. This means that you just don't have a known gender for a number of major characters, and I thought that was really interesting. But I have also read that to some transpeople this sounds like constant misgendering, so just thought I let you know in case you think you'd be bothered by it. Also, grief and imperialism are themes, so while it is a grand adventure, it is not especially lightweight. It really struck a chord with me. After I read it I though "This might straight up be my favourite book now" so I recommend it to everyone.

 

Another, older favourite of mine, and I apologies if this has come up in all those previous threads that were mentioned (I've just gotten back to this forum, I don't know what has already been covered), is The Deed of Paksenarrion by Elizabeth Moon. A fantasy about a woman who joins a mercenary company. Her lack of interest in sex and romance is brought up once in a while, but it is not a focus. Even before I knew I was aromantic myself, I found it really nice to read about a woman where it was all about the things she did, and romance was just not a factor in her life. Read it for cool woman in fantasy military.

On 4/12/2020 at 5:22 PM, Skittles87 said:

It's basically a space opera, focusing on a multi-species crew who fly around creating wormholes. There's a real found-family dynamic amongst the crew, with a couple of particularly strong male-female friendships. There are a few romantic relationships but none are boring or cheesy.

That sounds really interesting, I'm gonna check that out!

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So the book I'm going to mention here doesn't have any aro characters and it does have romantic love as the ultimate goal of the book, which is why I never mentioned it before on other threads. 'You're the One that I don't want' by Alexandra Potter is sort of a parody of the love-by-fate tropes. The two main characters keep getting stuck in situations which in a normal romance book would be very romantic but in this book the characters feeling are growing stronger in the dislike rather than the like. Ultimately though all the characters strive for romantic love as the ultimate final destination for a happily-ever-after predictable end, so it is still well within in the romantic chick-lit genre. 

I would recommend it for aros who aren't repulsed by litrarary romance or mentions of sex. It is an interesting divergence but it is still a romantic chick-lit book. A fast, possibly funny, trashy read.  

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@Jedi

@Skittles87

 Two of my favorite books! The third book in the wayfarer series also have one viewpoint character who reads as aro allo.

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