I posted my welcome post for A Universe of Wishes anthology edited by Dhonielle Clayton earlier this month, but I never posted my full review. So here are my thoughts on this anthology!
Thank you again to Penguin Teen for supplying me with a finished copy for review. This has not impacted my thoughts or opinions on this book.
A Universe of Wishes: A We Need Diverse Books Anthology edited by Dhonielle Clayton
Published: December 8, 2020
Publisher: Random House Children’s Books
Genre: YA Fantasy/Science Fiction anthology
From We Need Diverse Books, the organization behind Flying Lessons & Other Stories, comes a young adult fantasy short story collection featuring some of the best own-voices children’s authors, including New York Times bestselling authors Libba Bray (The Diviners), Victoria Schwab (A Darker Shade of Magic), Natalie C. Parker (Seafire), and many more. Edited by Dhonielle Clayton (The Belles).
In the fourth collaboration with We Need Diverse Books, fifteen award-winning and celebrated diverse authors deliver stories about a princess without need of a prince, a monster long misunderstood, memories that vanish with a spell, and voices that refuse to stay silent in the face of injustice. This powerful and inclusive collection contains a universe of wishes for a braver and more beautiful world.
AUTHORS INCLUDE: Samira Ahmed, Libba Bray, Dhonielle Clayton, Zoraida Córdova, Tessa Gratton, Kwame Mbalia, Anna-Marie McLemore, Tochi Onyebuchi, Mark Oshiro, Natalie C. Parker, Rebecca Roanhorse, Victoria Schwab, Tara Sim, Nic Stone, and a to-be-announced debut author/short-story contest winner.
This is the first anthology I’ve ever read and if all anthologies are like this one, I need to start picking them up more! I loved all of the stories, some more than others, but there wasn’t a single story I finished that I didn’t like.
One of the things I loved was the fact that there was such a great mix of sub-genres and representation – it made me so happy. Obviously this anthology is highlighting diverse stories, but the range of representation was wonderful. Every story brought something new to the table and were so different that it was like opening a new book every time.
One thing I thought was interesting was the fact that some of the stories were set in books that the author had previously written, like V.E. Schwab writing a short story about Alucard from her A Darker Shade of Magic series. While the stories can stand on their own, I loved getting to relive the original story through these familiar characters. Though there was a Jemma Doyle story from Libba Bray, which is from a series I haven’t read yet, but thankfully it can stand on its own. Sure, there were mentions of characters or events that I had no idea about, but I still loved the story. It actually made me excited to read this series from her.
Along with the short stories from established series, there were original stories that were amazing too. There were specific stories that got me to so intensely, I had to put the book down. I definitely had some favorites from here:
- A Universe of Wishes
- The Silk Blade
- Cristal y Ceniza
- A Royal Affair
- Longer Than The Threads of Time
Though I definitely had some favorites, there wasn’t a single story that I didn’t like, but I noticed that the beginning had stories that I liked more than the middle to the end. I’m not sure if it was story fatigue, or if I genuinely liked the stories in the first half better, but it was something that I noticed and wasn’t sure why.
Overall, I loved this anthology and I will be re-reading these stories! I can’t wait for more anthologies like this one! // 5 stars!