strxwberry cat 🌸

elysia's books

around sometime last year, maybe longer, we have been regularly going to libraries and getting out books to read, something we don't think we've ever done!

we enjoy libraries, since they are very nonlinear ways of discovering topics, and learning about stuff! when doing research online, you need to first know what your keywords are, get lucky from a link on a personal site or social media post you came across, or something else! in a library, we can explore the topics as we go, and see what each book is about.

the exploration is very fun, and exciting. we can discover so many new things accessibly!

we enjoy reading comprehensive books about photography and urbanism, as well as yuri manga. we have no intention of recording all the books we've read, and mainly ones we want to talk about!

mega topics

uwuwuwuwu

we really like how manga pages from the side look because of the ink on them.

we think this section is heavily under construction. learning what we want to write takes time and queer stuff

bloom into you

book cover featuring stylised fem presenting character holding another fem presenting character's face. Titled bloom into you, and the book is forced into a super nintendo cartridge slot.
content warnings

we think that this is a fairly accessible and gentle book compared to others we read! very very sweet.

  • family death
  • masking
  • heartbreak we think? it gets resolved though
  • sexually explicit scenes at the end

slow paced story about gals falling in love (and not thinking they should!)

it is, extremely extremely sweet. we thought a lot about bad things that could happen because of slow pacing, but nothing ever did!

we want to emphasise this is about characters falling in love, rather than a story about sapphics being sapphic towards each other. we went into it expecting they would become partners at some point early or midway through, but that is not what the story is about!

in the last chapter, there is a timeskip forward, and we thought that was overwhelming! there were so many new elements and so little time to go over them!

kitanai kimi ga ichiban kawaii

no image.
content warnings

please take care of yourself if you read this.

  • lots of sexually explicit scenes, including some non-consenual sex
  • bdsm, sadist, masochist, two fluid waste, power dynamic, and littlespace kinks
  • suicide and helped suicide
  • self harm , cyberbullying, doxxing
  • capitalism (major content warning /serious)

this is the very first yuri manga we've read, and the second lesbian graphic novel we've read in general. We discovered it through social media, and saw a group of people who read it talking about how objectionable it is. It is filled with triggering stuff.

We tried to follow the comments and threads the discussion created, but couldn't seem to find anything about what actually happens in it. we did find a suicide content warning and a "only read this if you're a psychopath," and, after that recommendation combined with our curiousity, we immediately went to go read it.

we loved it.

the kind of story it is changes a lot over the series. it starts off with a lot of playful sexual scenes and playful romance, and then becomes about a mental health crisis featuring doxxing and self harm, and then a return to more intense sexual and romantic intimacy, and then a runaway story.

the story connects these different pieces of itself very well, especially in the first three segments (fourth poorly paced and written and was unfinished). characters get a lot of development and interaction with each other, and all the segments fit together really well.

the plot threads are really layered and interesting for us, and we think this is the most interested we've been in finding out what is next of any lesbian story we have ever read.

we usually read lesbian stories because it makes our heart and legs flutter reading about fluffy romance. we read them because we love seeing sapphics love each other, and also because we like self inserting elysia and our partner into them! usually we get impatient in these stories when non-intimate parts are happening, because we are not interested in the rest of it!

kitanai kimi ga ichiban kawaii actually made us interested in the non-intimate parts! we found them exciting and interesting and wanted to see what happened next generally. it was really really exciting and engaging.

the manga is really sexual and somewhat fast paced, and focuses heavily on power dynamics between partners. power dynamic gave us an oppurtinity to consider how comfortable we feel being treated as very little power! previously, we never considered it because we assumed we found it uncomfortable, but, the way the partners treat each other in kitanai kimi ga ichiban kawaii is way sweeter than we thought was possible because of power dynamics.

the romantic and sexual intimacy is contextualised in extremely endearing ways! there's a scene where Hina thinks passively to herself I'm the perfect commuter wife! when getting their house-stuck partner dinner supplies, it's so fucking cute and good.

there's so many parts like this, especially at the very beginning of the story. the number 1 thing we'd change about the manga is having more sweet and extremely endearing scenes like this, and put them in the middle and end of the series, since most of them are in the first section. it's so fucking cute we want them to be happy with each other

the story is about how the partners obsession with each other and sadism masochism and power dynamic fetishes push them to the brink, and eventually past it. the ending is sad, it is extremely sad. based on what the author was able to complete, we feel like it may have actually been the best outcome for the lovers. they were put into a really tough situation and we still hope they ended up getting to be with each other after the end.

it is probably one of the most important and meaningful books we've read in a very long time, or at least the most important and meaningful of any fiction book. it may be approaching a decade since the last time we were as engrossed into a book's story as much as this.

[we have a much longer descrpition for this manga specifically. we prefer our words in that version! contact us if you'd like to read it. (hint: we'd like you to read it])

that time i got black mailed by the class's green tea bitch

if there is any one of these u read make it this one

adachi to shimamura

we read this because we wanted to read more green tea bitch lol. it is also really cute.

history

toronto book of the dead

no image.
content warnings
  • intimately sad death stories
  • abuse of marginalised peoples.
  • murder
  • poor physical health
  • colonialism
  • there's honestly a lot we just forget

this book is written extremely well.

it goes over points in toronto's history, and is almost written like several short stories.

it mostly goes over settlers' stories, but it seems to make a consious effort to also focus on Indigenous peoples' stories, in a respectful way (the author is a settler).

very fun writing style! we really love the author's writing and would like to thank them! the stories are super engaging and are written as if they are things that are happening now, in the present. it may be one of the most engaging non-fiction books we've ever read.

urbanism

happy city

xeno

xenogears

pixel character in a blue coat and brown khaks, buttoned up green under shirt. short hair, hunched over in a terrifying way.
content warnings
  • cannibalism
  • fascism
  • alarmingly het and not queer inclusive
  • trauma
  • mild (we think) gore
  • genocide
  • partner violence
  • war
  • prison
  • (more to be added)
emeralda is so autistic.