Compiled by the Espresso Addict

Espresso Recommendations

Innovative and stylish fanfiction, showcasing the very best across multiple sf, fantasy & literature fandoms. Good writing in all its forms can be found here, including gen, het, slash, OCs, AUs, crossovers, future fics, humour & pastiche

Contents: 1010 recs in 235 fandoms; 65 links

Arthurian legends

A Disambiguation of Elaines by Raspberryhunter

'Elaine Garlot walks to the computer, ejects the code-chip with Elaine Astolat's algorithms stored on it, and grinds it underfoot.' Why are there so many Elaines in the Arthur myths? Raspberryhunter's answer reads as if Lois McMaster Bujold were setting the legend on a Jackson's Whole populated almost entirely by women, with all the complicated relationships you'd expect

[Added 12/08/2015; Drama; 2500-6000; Arthurian legends]

Green the Holly by Martha

'The Yuletide bonfires were burning low when the ghost of Gawain the Good, who in life had been the first knight of King Arthur's Round Table, finally came home again.' A novel twist to the Green Knight story, with a strong sense of atmosphere and excellent characterisations for all the brothers

[Added 28/01/2011; Drama; 2500-6000; Arthurian legends]

The Green Year by Selden

'Morgause was staring at the little rim of sun around Gawain, considering. "We need to clean you up a little before the night comes, my son," she said. / Gawain knew that other boys' mothers - mothers who were not queens - would follow this up by spitting on a corner of their apron and scrubbing at a smut on his face, or tugging the neck of his jerkin closed. / Morgause took out an axe.' A rich & complex reworking of 'Sir Gawain and the Green Knight', drawing on the Fisher King legend, densely packed with allusions & delicious details. There's a fascinating exchange between the author & the recipient in the comments. One of my very favourites from this year's Yuletide

[Added 31/10/2017; Drama; 6000-20,000; Arthurian legends]

The Handmaid's Veil by Alexandra Lynch

'She would die for Isolde.' I'm a sucker for minor character viewpoints, and this is a lovely example. A heart-breaking love story that can't end well

[Added 03/01/2007; Drama; 2500-6000; Arthurian legends; Adult]

The Tale Of Ragnell by Ankaret

'Ragnell knew his sort. He'd talk as if swiving her was doing her a favour, and then he'd turn round and call her a harlot for being fool enough to give in to him, and probably accuse her of imperilling his immortal soul into the bargain.' This tautly structured vignette develops a strong voice for the Loathly Damosel to be, with lovely flashes of humour. Most enjoyable!

[Added 28/01/2011; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Arthurian legends]

The Water-Horse by Thamiris

Thamiris creates a rich medieval atmosphere using modern colloquial language – a truly enchanting tale!

[Added 13/01/2005; Drama; 6000-20,000; Arthurian legends]

What Is And What Seems To Be by Lesserstorm

'She is a tool his king has provided for him, a weapon to his hand.' This original & clever tale completely reimagines Guinevere. The results are enthralling

[Added 21/07/2009; Drama; 2500-6000; Arthurian legends]

Wynter wakeneth by goosecathedral

"'I can't think what you mean, madam,' he reproved. 'Am I not still abed, naked as a worm in my shirt?' / 'My lord's pages keep worms in their shirts,' she mused, 'slowworms and grass-worms, and call them poison nadders to frighten serving-maids. A knight of your'’ she paused, 'standing should keep about him a mighty serpent.'" A clever AU of 'Sir Gawain and the Green Knight', masquerading as PWP. Beautifully written, richly detailed, and with a lovely energy to it

[Added 02/01/2019; Romance/Erotica; 6000-20,000; Arthurian legends; Adult]