Sunday, March 4, 2012
Desert Blossom - Peeta/Katniss, AU
Who's up for another totally completed fic? This month I'm bringing another DustWriter story into the spotlight as we look at Desert Blossom. This fic is an awesome alternate universe tale that mixes cultural, social and world themes together to create a compelling and entrancing story.
Title: Desert Blossom
Rating: Rated M - Romance/Tragedy, AU
Summary: Peeta meets Katniss under very different circumstances in this present-day AU. Together, they must struggle together in a war-torn land to overcome tragedy and find the strength to live again.
I'm going to be honest - the THG fandom is incredibly talented. There are so many fics out there that are completed already that it makes my job hard sometimes, just picking one. But I think this month it was easier than most as I read Desert Blossom and it reminded me of why fanfiction is fun - it takes the characters we know and love and builds on them. An author of fanfiction can often create a character backstory that changes your canon view, can make storylines happen that confuse your canon, or even make it so totally believable that the characters exist outside of canon.
And that's exactly what DustWriter does in Desert Blossom. She makes the characters exist in a world that has nothing to do with Panem.
I'm recommending this fic for not only it's fantastic writing and inventive storyline, but more importantly for it's oustanding feat of making the name "Peeta" seem completely reasonable in modern day society.
The story follows the POV of Peeta as he, Gale and Haymitch study abroad in Afghanistan and struggle with the cultural divide between an American upbringing and the society that exists in the Middle East. And also he meets Katniss, obviously. This story is so far out of Panem that if not for the strong characterization loyalty you'd think that DustWriter had written accommplished original fiction. In my opinion, they have.
A further reason I recommend this fic is because it's researched (seriously, there's a legit bibliography). There are no (noticable for me, at least) negative stereotypes that would often be associated with an author unaware of cultural differences. The story is written with Katniss and Prim being of Afghani origin and it isn't just a forgotten fact - it's key to the characters development.
I love this fic. I really do. I think it pushes the comfortable boundaries of fanfic to create a story that bridges so many divides. Further, I think it's an important story to tell especially in a political climate such as this. It tells the story of people connecting regardless of their origins while still respecting their culture.
If you want to follow Peeta and Katniss out of Panem and into reality, this is the fic to read.