The Water That Falls On You From Nowhere

Today, I listened to the end of The Water That Falls On You From Nowhere, by John Chu, read by John Chu, on EscapePod. (I had been in the process of listening to it yesterday, but finished this morning.) And holy crap this story is fantastic.

I'm not sure if it's exactly science-fictional, but I wouldn't call it fantasy, either. And definitely not urban fantasy. It strikes me as sitting in a category adjacent to "The City and The City" by China Miéville, which I guess makes it slipstream.

It reminded me a lot of The Contemporary Foxwife, by Yoon Ha Lee, which I've blogged about before, for two reasons.

One, because it had a similar balance of extremely consequential and unambiguously relevant and affecting genre elements, and a story about relationships that played out -- not independently of those features, but immersed in them so deeply that the strangeness of them was just about perfectly absent.

And two -- it was similarly thick and deep in absolutely perfect moments of squee. And, like, deep and consequential moments of angst and drama that made the squee much, much more richly earned.

But seriously. So much squee.

Also: it won the Hugo this year for best short story.

The Water That Falls On You From Nowhere, by John Chu.