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The Demon Girl’s Song, by Susan Jane Bigelow

Review copy provided by the author.

One of the things I’ve seen a lot around this field is reviewers who don’t belong to a particular marginalized group not understanding the value in representation for people who do belong to that group. I want to avoid that mistake in this review: it’s very easy for me, as a heterosexual woman, to read a book like The Demon Girl’s Song and think, well, I don’t care one way or the other that the protagonist is a lesbian. People have all sorts of orientation, and for me as a straight lady with plenty of representation in fiction, it would be easy to say, “It doesn’t matter to me either way, I only care about the story.” And I do care about the story. But the protagonist, Andín, does care about who she loves. Her story is hers, it matters to her, and it matters to readers who don’t see themselves enough in quest fantasies.

The beginning is a little rocky, but things smooth out a lot when Andín starts traveling. If you like the central conceit of Lois McMaster Bujold’s Penric’s Demon novellas, Bigelow is working with a similar idea but different enough that it’s clearly not the same story, just some of the same furniture. Andín and her demon also have to find an accommodation, but in different ways than Penric–with larger-scale consequences.

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