If you exist on the internet, there’s a high chance you’ve run into the furry community. Maybe you’ve seen people dressing up in mascot-like costumes, or art of people’s fursonas on your feed. It could be as simple as meeting that person who liked Zootopia just a little more than the average person. But running into a furry or hearing about a furry doesn’t mean you understand them, their community, or their fiction. That’s why I’m going to break down everything here for you, and give you some recommendations for books you can read in your own time.
What’s A Furry?
If you look up the question above, You’ll get a variety of different answers. But basically, a furry is someone who has a special interest in anthropomorphic animals. While anyone can enjoy fiction with anthropomorphic animals, furries will commonly seek out and be drawn to this content because of their inclusion. For example, reading the Warrior Cats series doesn’t make you a furry, but if you find yourself reading book after book about talking animals? Some introspection might be in order.
There aren’t any requirements to being a furry, but there are a lot of practices and commonalities shared within the community. Most notable among these is the creation of one’s fursona. A fursona is generally a furry character that is meant to represent the creator or whoever/whatever the character is based on. These creations commonly take the form of digital or traditional cartoon art, which has led to the formation of a recognizable commonality in style among many in the furry community. These furry personas can also be made into costumes, known as fursuits, or into furry fiction.
Furry Fiction: Fiction, but with Furries
Let’s get this out of the way. Furry fiction is not much different from regular fiction other than the fact that it must include furries. Much like regular fiction, romance is probably one of the most popular subgenres of furry fiction, the main difference being that furry fiction is very commonly queer. This is probably because the furry community has had a tie to the queer community from the very beginning, which is part of the reason that so many misconceptions have been spread about it to this day.
For the sake of this article, I’ll be focusing on short stories and novels specifically. However, I personally believe if you want to really understand furry fiction, you should definitely read some webcomics.
If you want to dip your toes into the world of furry fiction without having to buy multiple books, this is for you. Furry!: The Best Anthropomorphic Fiction! by Fred Patten Is a collection of popular furry short stories. On top of including entertaining furry fiction, it also includes non-fiction sections that go more in-depth about where furry fiction comes from.
Green Fairy by Kyell Gold is about a wolf kid in his senior year of high school. He just wants to move in with his boyfriend after graduation, but unfortunately for him, his conservative town and his dad are making it difficult. After seeking the comfort of a hundred-year-old book and sharing a glass of absinthe with his friend, he starts to dream of escape in the body of a dancer.
If romance isn’t your forte, try Summerhill by Kevin Frane on for size. It’s a time-bending adventure about a dog man isolated on a lonely planet. He’s got no memories or anyone to turn to until interdimensional traveler Katherine comes for a visit. The story is creative and thrilling, but some reviewers think that the story leaves more questions than answers.
Yes, we have another work by Kyell Gold. When I’m recommending books, I try to search for a variety of authors and different kinds of stories. But despite Waterways rather tame plotline, it’s an enjoyable and touching read. A high school otter and fox fall in love as college creeps up from around the corner.
Imperium Lupi by Adam Browne is a steampunk fantasy novel with wolves, magic, and murder. On top of the overall edgy, gritty vibes of the story, there are a lot of morally gray characters throughout. And be warned, because if you pick up this book, you’ll be in for lots of character death.
Want to check out a furry webcomic? Check out this article about the webtoon Blades of Furry here!