Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted at That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week you compile a list of ten books which coincide with that week’s theme. You can find everything you need to know about joining in here!
This week’s theme is ‘Bookish Memories’, but I’m once again straying from the topic for #SciFiMonth. This year has seen the release of Xiran Jay Zhao’s Iron Widow, a sci-fi retelling of Wu Zetian’s rise to power, and in 2020 Kate Elliott’s Unconquerable Sun, a gender-swapped sci-fi retelling of the life of Alexander the Great, was published.
This got me thinking: What other events or people from history would I be interested in sci-fi retellings of? So today, I have
ten seven to share with you!
I should also say that I wrote a post about why I don’t like fantasy history retellings for Wyrd & Wonder last year, so at some point I’ll have to take a look at why sci-fi retellings don’t seem to bother me at all…
Louis XIV of France
This guy is literally known as ‘the Sun King’, so he’s made for his flamboyant ass to be cannonballed into outer space.
The end of Elizabeth I’s reign
Elizabeth I of England, on the other hand, was often associated with the moon as the Virgin Queen. She’s one of the UK’s most successful monarchs, even though she’s sadly the monarch who got us involved in the slave trade, but having never married or had any children, the final years of her reign were very stressful for her councillors and her people who had no idea who would be in charge after she died. I’d happily read a sci-fi novel about an aging empress, and the various royals across the galaxy vying for her empire.
Who doesn’t want a novel about a space pope and his dysfunctional family? Imagine the kind of outfits a space pope would have. Space. Pope.
The life of Zheng Yi Sao
Zheng Yi Sao, also known as Ching Shih, is one of history’s most successful pirates. Give me a retelling where she’s a space pirate, please.
The Fall of Constantinople, 1453
The Byzantine Empire vs. the Ottoman Empire – in spaaaaace! The galaxy seems like a fitting backdrop for the fall of an empire that’s over 1,000 years old.
The aftermath of the Black Death, but make it post-apocalyptic
If the pandemic has taught me anything, it’s that I totally get why the Black Death killed 2/3s of Europe – people are idiots. Personally I’m not in the mood for pandemic fiction, but I would love to see an alternate history/post-apocalyptic story set in the aftermath of the Black Death. Maybe add in some zombies for good measure; Dread Nation has taught me I love zombies in historical fiction.
The rise of Hatshepsut
There’s something about a ruler’s rise to power that can transfer so easily to outer space, where the sky is no longer the limit. I find Hatshepsut fascinating, and I’d love to come across more Ancient Egyptian history in my fiction, regardless of the genre.