Increasing Discoverability for Women Authors in SFF – 2018


Over the last few years, inspired by the awesome Jo Hall, I have made a point of ensuring that I read a higher number of women authors, given they are under-represented on bookshelves and in reviews. I have also ensured that a proportion of those women are new to me. Last year, I read 162 books, with 47 of those by women writers I hadn’t previously read, which is 27% of my reading list. If you’re interested in such things and haven’t yet seen the post, I have discussed my 2018 Reading List and the stats here.

Below I have listed the books I’ve read, linked to available reviews, which I’ve also posted on Goodreads and Amazon UK. Some reviews have not yet been released, while a handful I haven’t reviewed.

Here they are:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
The Cottingley Secret by Gaynor Hazel
Talon – Book 1 of the Talon series Julie Kagawa
Keeper by Kim Chance
Keeper of the Watch: Dimension 7 – Book 1 by Kristen L. Jackson
Going Grey – Book 1 of the Ringer series by Karen Traviss
Fire and Bone – Book 1 of the Otherborn series by Rachel A. Marks
The Magic Chair Murder: a 1920s English Mystery – A Black and Dods Mystery: 1 by Diane Janes
Reclaiming Shilo Snow – Book 2 of The Evaporation of Sofi Snow series by Mary Weber
A Pair of Docks – Book 1 of the Derivatives of Displacement series by Jennifer Ellis
The Cold Between – A Central Corps novel by Elizabeth Bonesteel
Children of the Shaman – Book 1 of the Children of the Shaman by Jessica Rydill
The Blood – Book 3 of the Jem Flockhart series by E.S. Thomson
Witch at Heart – Book 1 of the Jinx Hamilton Mystery series by Juliette Harper
Song of Blood and Stone – Book 1 of the Earthsinger Chronicles by L. Penelope
Scylla & Charybdis by Lindsey Duncan
Crimson Ash by Hayley Sulich
Furyborn – Book 1 of the Empirium series by Claire Legrand
The Watchmaker’s Daughter – Book 1 of the Glass and Steele series by C.J. Archer
Gwithyas: Door to the Void by Isha Crowe
Drifters’ Alliance – Book 1 of the Drifters’ Alliance series by Elle Casey
The Tethered Mage – Book 1 of the Swords and Fire series by Melissa Caruso
All Systems Red – Book 1 of the Murderbot Diaries by Martha Welles
Nolander – Book 1 of the Emanations series by Becca Mills
Drop by Drop – Book 1 of the Step by Step series by Morgan Llywelyn
Fawkes by Nadine Brandes
Throne of Glass – Book 1 of the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas
The Great Alone by Kristen Hannah
The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock by Imogen Hermes Gowar
Pirate Nemesis – Book 1 of the Telepathic Space Pirates by Carysa Locke
Anachronism by Jennifer Lee Rossman
Fallen Princeborn: Stolen by Jean Lee
Kindred Spirits – Book 5 of the Gabriel Ash and Hazel Best series by Jo Bannister
A Muddle of Magic – Book 2 of the Fledgling Magic series by Alexandra Rushe
Unwritten by Tara Gilboy
Immortal Creators – Book 2 of the Immortal Writers series by Jill Bowers
Spinning Thorns by Anna Sheehan
Athena’s Champion – Book 1 of the Olympus trilogy by David Hair and Cath Mayo
Together by Julie Cohen
Caraval – Book 1 of the Caraval series by Stephanie Garber
A Secret History of Witches by Louisa Morgan
The Dirigible King’s Daughter by Alys West
Star Nomad – Book 1 of the Fallen Empire series by Lindsey Buroker
The High Ground – Book 1 of the Imperials series by Melinda M. Snodgrass
Six of Crows – Book 1 of Six of Crows series by Leigh Bardugo
The Echoes of Sol – Books 1-3 Boxed Set by Charissa Dufour
The Race by Nina Allan
The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas

22 responses »

    • Thank you, Jean! I didn’t used to… Partly Himself being plugged into Kindle Unlimited, partly being signed up for Netgalley and mostly my lovely book blogging friends:)

    • Yes – do check, Carla. The reason I started this challenge was that I, too, was under the impression that I read a lot of women authors – only to find when I actually crunched the numbers that instead of it being more women than men, it was more or less 50/50… That really shocked me and made me decide to join this Challenge.

  1. What a wonderful list of women authors in SFF. I see plenty here that I’ve read as well! Did you read one of my books in 2018? Or was it in 2017? Time is flying and I don’t remember now!

  2. I’ve never consciously paid attention to how many women authors I read each year but now you have me curious. In my mind, I think I’ve read many but I have a feeling that it’s nowhere near as many as I think.

    • I’d be very intrigued to discover if it’s as many as you think. Though, again, I think it all depends on the genres that you read. I think because I read so much space opera and high fantasy, I had to make a conscious decision to favour women authors, who are very under-represented, especially within these genres.

  3. This was a post that made me think and wonder. To me, an author is an author is an author. I can usually remember an author’s last name when a title comes to mind, but whether the author is male or female is totally just “not noted” in the first place. Sorry. I know your efforts are important, and you have made me aware of how underrepresented women authors are. I will try to do better. LOL

    • Please don’t feel badly about it – the issue of under-representation of women authors isn’t constant throughout all genres – urban fantasy, YA, romance in all sub-genres, psychological thrillers and most crime genres – women are holding their own. But with science fiction, high and epic fantasy, historical, literary fiction and horror – women struggle to get agent representation, publishers, reviews and their books on shelves.

  4. That’s quite the list of female authors! I see some books on there like Pirate Nemesis that I also read and a few books I remember reading your reviews for.

  5. Great post Sarah – that’s an impressive amount of new female authors. I was very pleasantly surprised last year by how many of my books were by female authors – although they weren’t all new to me.
    Lynn 😀

  6. Because of the fields I read (romance; mystery, particularly traditional/classic and cozy genres; and fantasy), I read a pretty high percentage of women authors already… but I am always glad for more recommendations, especially for SF and some of the fantasy subgenres where women struggle more to get published. The burgeoning YA field is actually publishing a lot of what once would have been adult fantasy written by women, and I have to wonder if some adult fantasy is being diverted into or marketed as YA because it’s written by women and often features female main characters, and therefore is assumed not to be of interest to the adult (male) fantasy market?

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