The first, the Arthur C. Clarke Award–winning novel Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, strikes me as being the most gentle, most benevolent vision of a (post)apocalyptic society I have seen in while, since Mandel depicts the human need for company, art, civilisation and, yes, also technology in a way that feels optimistic yet at the same time weirdly authentic. Beautifully written, though rather stylised in parts. Plus, in my humble opinion, best use of a Star Trek:Voyager quote ever.
The second piece is a bit of Nice Guys fanfiction that I almost wouldn’t have clicked on because of its straight “E” rating on AO3, which I assure you much is higher than anything I would feel comfortable reading under normal circumstances. However, well…
*takes a deep breath*
It was late at night and some of the story’s tags, good grief, some of the tags just seemed too good to ignore. “Families of Choice”, “Religion”, “California History” and “Christmas”, only to list a few of them. Now, writers usually do not describe their work along these lines if they haven’t got anything to tell that goes substantially beyond whatever their piece got its “E” rating for.
Thus, I kind of trusted the tags and proceeded. If you are remotely interested in Nice Guys fic you might want to inquire which story it was that made me climb over that yellow AO3 warning bar. So here comes the link:
make the rougher places plain by Greywash.
Atmospheric, poignant, intense and touching due to its own kind of melancholia.
Below the cut follow some of the passages which really did me in as a reader. I can only bow to anyone who can write something like this on the basis of one silly movie.