Fantasy > Unsung Stories

The Beauty by Aliya Whiteley


This is a thread for discussion of the book, reviews, comments, questions and requests for appropriate support organisations to help you rehabilitate.

The Beauty is a post-apocalyptic novella. New weird meets fairy tale, laced with horror. A book guaranteed to stay with you long after you've finished reading it. To give fair warning, it does contain strong imagery and horror. The following information is taken from our website whilst we get posts written up properly here. Apologies for any familiar information whilst we get that done.

Somewhere away from the cities and towns, a group of men and boys gather around the fire each night to listen to their stories in the Valley of the Rocks. For when the women are all gone the rest of your life is all there is for everyone. The men are waiting to pass into the night.

The story shall be told to preserve the past. History has gone back to its aural roots and the power of words is strong. Meet Nate, the storyteller, and the new secrets he brings back from the woods. William rules the group with youth and strength, but how long can that last? And what about Uncle Ted, who spends so much time out in the woods?
Hear the tales, watch a myth be formed. For what can man hope to achieve in a world without women? When the past is only grief how long should you hold on to it? What secrets can the forest offer to change it all?

Discover the Beauty.

"This novella should win stuff. Seriously, just read it.  Original work is being done. Here’s proof."
– Nina Allan

"I was provoked, shocked, disgusted, touched and, ultimately, I emerged feeling wiser. A brilliant, haunting original."
– Craig Lines, Den of Geek's top books of 2014n

"This is a short book with a lot to say, all of it interesting ... Most of all it's about the power of storytelling to preserve our past and shape our future, and so one can see why it would appeal to an imprint called Unsung Stories, on this evidence a name to look out for. The Beauty is intellectual and visceral, frightening and thoughtful, an adventure and a meditation."
– Stephen Theaker, Interzone #254

"If I were to push one book on you from 2014, shove one book at you and say “this”, it would be The Beauty."
– Benjamin Judge

"Aliya Whiteley’s elegant, dreamlike prose masterfully frames the most slippery of issues – the fluidity of gender and sexuality; history and the power of propaganda; the value of life in all its forms, and the complex, grotesque nature of desire and disgust. The deconstruction of gender roles provides a sophisticated comment on the natural passage of identity and selfhood."
– Jennifer Wade, We Love This Bookn

Exciting times for The Beauty - it's now got three awards nominations under it's belt.

* Honors list for the James Tiptree Jr Award
* Shortlisted for Best Novella in the Shirley Jackson Awards
* Shortlisted for Best Novella in the Saboteur Awards
The Saboteur Awards are decided by a public vote, which is open until the 24th. Just putting that one out there. If you do vote then I'm also a fan of Influx Press and #LossLit.

Andrew Hook:
That's fantastic. Best of luck in the awards :)

Thanks Andrew. In all honesty, it's been a surreal week, but only in a good way.

Des Lewis:
Many congratulations, Aliya.


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