"A wildly inventive, funny, and ultimately quite heartfelt novel, The Unraveling is a chaotic romp of gender deconstruction packaged up in a groovy science-fictional coming-of-age tale." —Chicago Review of Books
In the far-off future, Fift is a Staid-gendered youth–working towards logic and thoughtfulness–just trying to figure out zir life in the bustling, but rigid social system of Fullbelly. And as if mastering zir three bodies and making zir twelve parents proud weren’t enough to handle, Fift’s growing relationship with Shria, an at-times emotional and passionate Vail-gendered bioengineer, is a controversy waiting to happen.
When Fift and Shria wind up at the center of a scandalous art spectacle that sparks off a multilayered Unraveling of society, Fift is torn between zir attraction to Shria and the safety of zir family, between staying true to zir feelings and social compliance . . . all while zir personal crises suddenly take on global significance. What’s a young Staid to do when the whole world is watching?
In his intricate and thoughtful debut novel, Benjamin Rosenbaum brings warmth, heart, and humor to this story of growing up in the distant future, interrogates exactly who a utopia is for, and how social structures only change when everyone has a voice. Like Chana Porter’s The Seep and Monica Byrne’s The Actual Star, Benjamin Rosenbaum’s The Unraveling is the latest in a line of science fiction that challenges gender, society, and culture, while showcasing an inclusive, expansive, and creative vision of what the future can be.