Bludhaven's Reviews > Wraeththu

Wraeththu by Storm Constantine
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Since I found this trilogy years ago, I revisit every few years and rediscover why I loved it so much the first time around. It’s a deeply engrossing story. The first time I read this I was so hooked that I read all three book on one weekendd. The love story of Pel and Cal stayed with me till today and Cal may still be one of the most interesting characters ever written. (At least for me.)

I’d call it alternative Science Fiction rather than Science Fantasy, but basically we have a future world where magic works. The way the concept of magic is introduced is the key though.

It’s the far future and the planet earth has changed dramatically through an implied catastrophe. Now humanities survival is threatened by a mutation that seems to affect only men. At first the members of Wraeththu and seem to be part of a strange cult that fascinates youths and anarchists, but it turns out they are a new hermaphrodite race.

The trilogy describes the dawn and rise of the new race, the struggle to built a new society from the ashes humanity has left them and the gradual discovery and understanding of their new circumstances. The first generation struggles with their human heritage, their “gendered” male upbringing.

Sex is an important part of the Wraeththu culture and the novels are packed with erotic descibtions that might squick some readers. But in many ways sex is described as a nearly tantric concept deeply connected with power dynamics and magic.

Wraeththu is an impressive first work for any author. The world of Wraeththu is believable and vast and the depth of the world building that went into this trilogy is simply amazing. The characters are vivid and real, even though they have an elf-like, uncanny quality about them.
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