A (hopefully growing) list of some of my favorite works of fanfiction, presented here on the off chance that you share some of my taste in fannish literature and are looking for an interesting new read. It doesn't contain every fic I've ever enjoyed, but rather those that I found especially impressive for one reason or another; you can certainly ask me (in the comments, through some method given on the contact page, whatever) for additional recommendations if you're curious about any of the others I liked, though.

The fics below are currently sorted first by fandom, then alphabetically. The selection is small right now, but as it grows I may break it down further by length or something. I've listed any relevant information about each, including its approximate rating, genre, length, whether or not it's completed and any other notes or warnings. Ideally I'll get around to providing multiple links for more of the currently-active stories as well, just so you can find it at your favorite fic-reading venue if you'd like to comment/review but don't want to sign up for Yet Another Forum. (If you're the author of one of these fics and want me to direct readers and their reviews to a specific link, just shoot me a comment and let me know.)

I'm also always up for recommendations from other people, so if you don't see one of your favorites on here and feel I have committed a heinous crime by omitting it then by all means use this page's comments to toss a link my way. I'll check it out when I get a chance. Please also let me know if there are other things about these stories that you'd prefer I warn for or otherwise mention in the notes, so I don't accidentally get people invested in a fic that suddenly ends up making them uncomfortable, spoils something for them, etc.!

I hope you enjoy these fics as much as I did!


Anima Ex Machina: REBOOT by JX Valentine

Read it at: Serebii Forums (You can also read the previous revision here; note that a lot has changed in the new version)

Sci-Fi/Adventure | PG-15/T | Chaptered, In Progress | Notes: strong violence and body horror

What can I say about AEM? Kind of a lot, actually! It's got aliens, it's got pokémon, it's got action, it's got violence and other potentially gory stuff relating to aliens, pokémon and action, it's got a helluvalot of worldbuilding detail that repeatedly blows my mind and it can't decide whether it's srs bsns or a cracky celebration of everything B-movie sci-fi. That's not to mention that AEM's cast includes several oft-forgotten (or oft-mangled) canon Pokémon characters and the fic makes them every bit as amazing and flawed and wonderful as any of the more traditionally popular options. It stars Bill, for example. But also aliens. I hope you can appreciate why this is a beautiful, beautiful thing. It's now on its third revision and it's looking to be the best yet, so if you'd like to see what happens if you take Bill and xenomorphs and put them in a blender then I can absolutely recommend that you get stuck in.

Click by Breezy

Read it at: Serebii Forums

General | PG/K+ | One-Shot, Completed

This little gem was what first introduced me to Breezy's fanfiction (which I still need to read more of ack), and I'm not sure I could have asked for a better first taste. The story is told from the point of view of Maisy, Kurt's granddaughter, as she searches for the magic that makes poké balls work, and for anyone else who understands them the way her grandpa does. The child's viewpoint is captured perfectly, including quite a few of the sorts of adorable things kids say, and effectively presents a cute and fuzzy story that can still make you think a bit about what poké balls mean to you.

Clouded Sky by Negrek

Read it at: FanFiction.Net

Journey Fic/Adventure | PG/K+ | Chaptered, Completed (46 chapters)

I may have listed "journey fic" as the genre, but Clouded Sky quickly sidesteps any chance of becoming a bog-standard badge slog by introducing us to a new region that is actually different from the rest instead of "I'm calling it Cheeto and sticking in OC gym leaders but really it's just Kanto with a new coat of paint". Waytar has its own history, its own political structure, and a different take on the Pokémon League and the concept and lifestyle of pokémon trainers. Negrek even makes note of how certain aspects of the region's geography and history would affect the physical appearance of the population, just to give you an idea of the care with which the setting was created.

The fic is more than just a shiny new region with a side of thought-was-actually-put-into-this, though. The plot is full of twists and turns that take Tobias's journey above and beyond the average new trainer's trip around the region, all of which hint at something deeper than the hapless hero or any of the other characters could have imagined. To an extent this is because the fic was originally intended to be part of a larger series that is not likely to be continued, though there is a postface that clears up some of what the other stories would have touched on; even without that, however, Clouded Sky is well worth a read as a stand-alone work.

Curse by Dragonfree

Read it at: The Cave of Dragonflies Fan Fiction page, FanFiction.Net

Supernatural/Tragedy | G/K | One-Shot, Completed

Why does the move Curse behave one way when used by ghosts but another way when used by other pokémon? We've all seen the move's two different effects, but Curse offers an explanation as to why—an explanation that lends some pretty chilling validity to a name we probably all take for granted, especially when talking about the non-ghosts.

Dividing the Bones by Saffire Persian

Read it at: FanFiction.Net

Drama/Horror | PG-13/T | One-Shot, Completed

Cubone and marowak have always been enigmatic and fairly dark pokémon—wearing the skull and wielding the bones of your own deceased mother is a far cry from a loyal, tail-wagging growlithe or a little pidgey fluttering around in the grass and hiding itself in the sand—and Saff's fic takes a crack at explaining just how and why that is. For such a short story it paints a vivid picture of the Boneyard and the culture of the cubone and marowak that live within it, and of what that culture means to one cubone whose time to pass into adulthood has come.

Mary Sue Must Die! by JX Valentine

Read it at: Serebii Forums

Journey Fic, Parody/Adventure | PG-13/T | Chaptered, In Progress (Dead/Hiatus)

Mary Sue Must Die! does, like most journey fic parodies, contain a blatant Sue character who gets a sparkly-special starter and immediately finds herself in the midst of a patently ridiculous plot gone awry. The difference is that where most real Mary Sues seem to twist their universes around their little fingers, this Sue literally does—the eldritch entities of the cosmos have foretold her arrival, Professor Oak and his aides lament the azure sky and the way they tend to bend over backwards and conjure sparkly-special starters out of nowhere when trainers arrive on days like these, and the assassin whose job it is to ensure that these world-warping events don't get too far out of hand has to jump through more and more outlandish hoops just to keep the wayward Sue in her sights. Top it all off with some deliciously dry humor and you've got the making of something grand.

Metamorphosis by Saffire Persian

Read it at: FanFiction.Net

Humor | PG-13/T | Chaptered, In Progress (Dead/Hiatus)

Metamorphosis is one of those rare fics that uses second-person POV to its fullest effect, and the result is a very heartwarming look at growing up in the Pokémon world that doesn't necessarily involve bonding with pokémon by being a trainer. It doesn't look like Metamorphosis will ever be finished at this point, sadly, but the few chapters that are there introduce you to a cast of endearing characters, one of whom often really does feel like you, and the beginnings of a sweet and emotional story.

Morphic by Dragonfree

Read it at: The Cave of Dragonflies Fan Fiction page, FanFiction.Net

Sci-Fi/Suspense | R/M | Chaptered, Completed (14 chapters + extras) | Notes: strong violence, strong language, potentially sensitive topics (abortion, genetic modification, religion)

Morphic started as something of a deconstruction of the typical "pokémorph" fic genre, which usually involves unfortunate teenagers kidnapped by Insert Evil Team Here and genetically modified into half-human, half-pokémon mutants; said teenagers usually escape the clutches of the nasty nasty Rockets (or whoever) and then go on an exciting and/or dark romp with their fancy new superpowers. Morphic takes a different approach, first of all ensuring that the genetic modification actually makes sense with regards to existing technology and research, and then taking the time to explore the implications of the morphs' mutations and powers rather than simply saying "okay he can use flamethrower and that's awesome now who can he set on fire". And those implications, as suggested by the warnings I listed above, can get pretty deep and dark. The story is not for the squeamish or easily-offended, especially as it gets further along, but it does make you think about the concept of pokémorphs, and that's really something.

Morphic also includes a few "extras", short side-stories written primarily so the author could explore more of Dave and Mia's personalities. Morphic can be enjoyed without reading the extras (though the extras aren't likely to make a lot of sense without reading the full story), and a few of the extras can get pretty cracky, but Dave and Mia are both fascinating people and these additional discussions are fun reads.

Option Other by Breezy

Read it at: Serebii Forums

Friendship | PG-13/T | One-Shot, Completed

A fun look at two protagonists that, much to my delight, does not involve shipping and instead involves a highly amusing conversation between two starkly different characters who still manage to be friends. Hilda is made of sassy and awesome, just the way I personally have always imagined her, and while Hilbert (or "Hil") is slightly less hardcore awesome he is full of some lovely dry wit that makes him more than a match for his capricious Battle Subway partner. Because Hil and Hilda are so different they come away from their conversation having learned rather a lot from one another, and the little chat they have on the way to all that character building is funny and sounds very naturally like the way two friends would hang out and mess with each other.

The Ties that Bind by Saffire Persian

Read it at: FanFiction.Net

Drama/Tragedy | PG-13/T | One-Shot, Completed

This has got to be one of the most touching fanfics I've ever read, made all the more heart-wrenching by the fact that it pulls off second-person POV so well that at times I really felt like it was me going through what happens. If you've ever had a pokémon that you've grown really attached to, this little sucker will hit you right in the feels; even if you haven't, it's a wonderfully sad story that you should definitely give a look.


And We're Alive by RedPen

Read it at: Archive of Our Own

General/Drama | PG/K+ | Chaptered, Completed (2 chapters)

The Scratch has gone horribly wrong, and somehow John, Rose, Dave and Jade find themselves back on a post-apocalyptic Earth—separated from one another by impossible distances and each struggling to survive and remain sane on their own. The kids have to go to extraordinary lengths to keep themselves alive in the deserted world, and even greater lengths to find one another at all costs. The story does a great job exploring how each kid would react to their respective situations, and the little details—even down to the way the different kid POVs are delineated in the text—combine with the greater, twistier story to make an excellent read.

John Egbert and the Goblet of Sick Fires by Hammie and Harry Hazard

Read it at: Tumblr, Archive of our Own

Humor | PG-13/T | Chaptered, In Progress (Dead)

This is really more of a fanadventure than a fanfic, but it's awesome and I don't plan on starting a "fanadventure rec list" so it's just going to have to fit in here. GoSF is a Harry Potter/Homestuck crossover that dumps the beta kids and Alternian trolls into an AU Hogwarts in which both humans and trolls have long studied witchcraft and wizardry. The art has a fun, sketchy look that's wonderfully expressive, and the storyline—the convenient re-revival of the Triwizard Tournament, in which "no one is going to die this time for reals"—is both hilarious and full of some interesting looks at what it would be like if trolls and humans shared the earth and also half of them were magic. As an added bonus the story does occasionally take reader input—the title character was chosen based on reader votes, for example.

Unfortunately this has been declared dead by its authors, but I can still recommend you give what's there a look (as well as the companion askblog/infoblog, scribblywizards).

Second Base by ladyofshallnot

Read it at: Archive of Our Own

Humor/Family/Friendship | PG-13/T | Chaptered, In Progress (Hiatus/Slow)

The kids are back home on a completely-restored Earth, and when John's dad and Rose's mom get married they have to learn to live with one another as well as with all the normal people all around them. It's told primarily from Dave's point of view with a smattering of John's, and as you'd expect of a fic seen through the eyes of the Ironic Coolest Coolkid and the King of the Prankster's Gambit, Second Base is brimming with hilarious narration and dialogue. I've seen other readers refer to it as one of the most, if not the most, quotable fic in the history of Homestuck, and sweet heavens they are not wrong. It has apparently stalled around six chapters in, but even if ladyofshallnot never finishes it (hopefully she will, of course!) then it's worth reading for all of the awesome Dave quotes alone.

SiCk by RedPen

Read it at: Archive of Our Own

Drama/Angst | PG-13/T | Chaptered, In Progress (Hiatus/Slow)

Gamzee's brief period of sobriety put the trolls hiding on the meteor through quite a lot, but now that Karkat and Kanaya have found a way to bring him back to his old self everything should settle down. There's just one problem: Gamzee's not sure he wants to go back to the way things were. Anyone who's read Homestuck already knows there's a lot more going on in Gamzee's dopey clown head than you'd think, and SiCk gets right into said clown head and examines what he's like when he's stoned, what he sees when he's sober, and his increasingly dark struggle as he tries to figure out who he's really supposed to be. There are only two chapters posted as of this writing and there's a sizeable wait between installments, but those two chapters are meaty enough to tell a whole lot of fascinating story by themselves.

(This was started before the "shoosh-papping" incident in the actual Homestuck, just fyi, so it has no relation to that particular part of canon... though it is a nifty coincidence.)

The End and What Comes After by RedPen

Read it at: Archive of Our Own

Drama/Humor | PG-13/T | Chaptered, In Progress (Hiatus/Slow) | Notes: heavy on troll typing quirks/colors

Told entirely through pesterlogs (so if the trolls' typing quirks and colors bother you then this may not be for you), The End and What Comes After asks what would happen if the trolls had never played Sgrub and instead gone on to struggle through adulthood in the Alternian empire. It's not just a look at how the empire might work and how young trolls might try to fit into it all—and the author does an admirable job with this considering we only get conversation rather than prose descriptions of locations and activities—but RedPen has each of the twelve trolls' personalities down pat like you wouldn't believe. The dialogue is always spot-on and often hilarious, and in fact I'd argue that this fic has just as many glorious quotes as Second Base. As the story is currently moving slowly it looks like we'll have to wait a little longer to get into the meat of the plot (though some juicy seeds have been sown already), but do yourself a favor and give it a read now if only for the wonderful, wonderful pesterlogs. Please.

Unhinged by RedPen

Read it at: Archive of Our Own

Drama/Crack | PG-13/T | Chaptered, Completed (22 chapters)

Oh, look, another RedPen fic! And exactly none of you are surprised. Unhinged, which is set shortly before Jade's entry into the Medium, takes Rose's chumhandle (tentacleTherapist) literally and has her whisked off to Derse to serve as a shrink for an increasingly deranged Jack Noir. It's as cracky as it sounds, and the author admits this up front, but what seems like a very silly idea draws you in from the outset with its rollercoaster pace and snappy wit and works surprisingly well as a "serious" story. The Courtyard Droll in particular tugs at your heartstrings quite a bit, and even Jack is made (sort of) sympathetic as the fic explores just what it is that has him so angry and unhinged.

BBC Sherlock

A Study in Squawking by Castiron

Read it at: Archive of Our Own

General/Drama/Crack | PG-13/T | Chaptered, Completed (12 chapters)

I can say without hesitation that this is one of my favorite fanfics of all time, hands down, end of discussion. It illustrates how the partnership—and friendship—of John Watson and Sherlock Holmes came to be, as told (under duress) by Sherlock while Mycroft tries to keep him out of the search for a missing John. Sherlock's characterization is so excellent I could easily imagine the narration in his voice. Castiron fits the events of the show into the events of the story almost seamlessly—and even does the same with several of Arthur Conan Doyle's original Sherlock cases, a detail that I unfortunately didn't catch until scanning the comments because I've read precious few of them. If you are a fan of ACD's original works, though, I'm sure you'll enjoy seeing Castiron's updated versions. The fact that Sherlock is so very obviously Sherlock, throughout the whole thing and in spite of all the changes, makes the tension and emotion building up to the climax all the more poignant.

Oh, yes, and Sherlock is a macaw. Sorry, did I not mention that earlier?