Rebel here, yeah?
That’s the rallying cry – or the misfit call to individuality at the heart of my series Rebel Vampires. In fact, it’s the core of every book I write: there’s a reason they’re called ‘Fantasy for Rebels‘.
Yet rebellion – against corrupt societies, conformity, kings or patriarchs has been one side of both fantasy and science fiction’s coin.
On the other?
A style of fantasy that conforms to safe patterns: yearns back to a time when men were men, women were women and peasants knew their place…even if they were all elves.
So to celebrate the rebel in fantasy, here are Five of the Best Fantasy and Science Fiction Rebels:
5. V for Vandetta: Alan Moore. V is an anarchist: violent and vengeful. His porcelain Guy Fawkes mask is also the influence for Anonymous and activist groups in the real world. How’s that for subversive fiction?
4. The Handmaid’s Tale: Margaret Atwood. All right, so who’s not watching this right now? Interesting thing about the book? EVERY main character in it is a rebel, even though this is a nightmare world. Each one disobeys Gilead’s Laws, either with active resistance or rebellion within their family. No rule can be absolute.
3. The Dispossessed: Ursula K. Le. Guin. The unlikely rebel here is a physicist. How he rebels? By questioning: neither the anarchy of one world not the pacifism of the other is perfect. There’s no such place as Utopia? Yeah, got it.
2. The Moon is a Harsh Mistress: Robert A. Heinlein. This is a true novel of rebellion: a moon colony – an underground penal colony that’s like the Old West – rebels against Earth. The term ‘Rational Anarchist‘ is invented.
1. A Song of Ice and Fire: George R. R. Martin. Where to start? The whole series is a sequence of political machinations, military campaigns, and rebellions. The obvious is Robert’s Rebellion but the one that sums up the spirit..? It’s the Mother of Dragons’ attempts to give the control back to the slaves, so they’ll free themselves in Slavers Bay. Daenerys is the ultimate rebel: against her place in life, her gender, her role and for freedom. What’s not to love?
Like Daenerys, in Rebel Vampires Light rebels against his role and for freedom. He finds himself in both a human and Blood Lifer world, which is corrupt and controlling.
Sometimes rebellion is less dangerous than hiding in the shadows…
So who’s your favourite rebel in fantasy?