Pairing(s): Girl!Patrick Kane/Jonathon Toews, Girl!Sidney Crosby/Evgeni Malkin, Girl!Taylor Hall/Jordan Eberle, Girl!Ryan Ellis/Roman Josi, Girl!Phil Kessel/Tyler Bozak, Girl!Alex Galchenyuk/Brendan Gallagher, Girl!Jamie Benn/Tyler Seguin, Girl!Patrick Roy/Adam Foote
Manifesto by: super_tricie341 (LJ) | blackestglass (tumblr)
Blurb: I'm just going to be honest. I don't care about hockey. Like, at all. But blithers rec'd two girl!Kaner/Toews stories that I read solely because her write-up and the fic tags signaled that these stories would be 100000000000% my jam AND THEY WERE. And so it is entirely blithers' fault that I went on a terrible spiral wherein I read basically every story on Hockey RPF's Alternate Universe- Always a Different Sex AO3 tag.
And it was glorious.
My friends, you do not have to care about hockey or know who any of these people are. You really really don't. I just pretend I'm reading really excellent romance novellas about a gender-integrated NHL. But if you enjoy the following:
-TROPES. SO MANY TROPES. ALL OF THE TROPES.
-FRIENDS TO LOVERS
-MUTUALLY OBLIVIOUS PINING
-RIDICULOUSLY HOT UST/MAKEOUTS/SEXY TIMES
-INCREDIBLY COGENT METACOMMENTARY ON SEXISM, THE POLITICS OF GENDER INTEGRATION IN SPORTS, AND THE TREATMENT OF FEMALE ATHLETES IN THE MEDIA
-LADIES SMASHING THE PATRIARCHY
-LADIES SUPPORTING OTHER LADIES
-DUDES LOOKING AT THEIR LADIES LIKE THEY HUNG THE MOON AND STARS
Then you will definitely enjoy what I am about to offer you. And you guys, I am reccing you LONG FIC. Like, the shortest one is ~9k. SO THESE ARE EXTRA AWESOME, MEATY READS.
Rec #1: Like Other Girls
Pairing: Girl!Patrick Kane/Jonathon Toews
Rating/Warning(s): M/R, Warnings for mentions of sexism and misogyny
Why This Must Be Read: This is part 1 of the "Like Other Girls" series and I'm just...so in love with this universe. I have no idea what Patrick Kane is like in real life, but the author does such a fantastic job of re-imagining how some of the things that have happened IRL to dude!Patrick Kane would turn out differently if he'd always been a girl. I love how the author explicitly rejects the internalized misogyny of the trope of female athletes "not being like other girls" and makes it clear that Girl!Kaner is unabashedly, unashamedly female, but that doesn't mean she can't be really fucking excellent at hockey. I just...I fucking love Pat, and I love her team, and Jonny is awkward and intense, and then adorably protective and their relationship will give you so many feelings.
Rec #2 The Price of Admission
Pairing: Girl!Sidney Crosby/Evgeni Malkin (aka Geno)
Rating/Warning(s): E/NC-17, again warnings for sexism, misogyny, slut shaming
Why This Must Be Read: This is the next story in the "Like Other Girls" series. I loved this universe's Pat, but that has nothing, NOTHING, on how much I fucking adore this universe's Sidney Crosby. In this universe, she was the first woman to break into the NHL and she carries the weight of the responsibility of representing women in the NHL so seriously and with such care, but at her own expense. I love the metacommentary in this story about negotiating being a woman in a male-dominated field so so much, and I especially adore the incredible support system the author has built between all the female hockey players in the league. Under normal circumstances they might not necessarily be friends or even like each other, but they all have each other's backs because they have to and the female friendships in this story/universe are so beautiful. I also love Sid and Geno's relationship; how from the get-go, Geno has always respected her, and understood her, and followed her lead without question, which makes the conflict between them in this story so hurtful, because Geno is the LAST person Sid would have expected this from. It's a beautifully human and moving story about forgiveness and the validity of one's hurt/anger (especially female anger, which can be so easily dismissed).
Rec #3: sleep with every window open
Pairing: girl!Sidney Crosby/Evgeni Malkin
Rating/Warning(s): E/NC-17, FYI: this is locked to AO3 users only
Why This Must Be Read: This is another excellent story about Sydney being the first woman to break into the NHL and also features bisexual!Syd, as well as an amazing friendship with Trish (girl!Kaner). Geno and Syd's relationship is so so lovely. Syd is so hard on herself, and this story is an excellent character study that explains why, and I love so much how Geno is always putting Syd first and looking out for her.
Rec #4: make lots of noise
Pairing: Girl!Taylor Hall/Jordan Eberle
Rating/Warning(s): T/PG-13, Warnings for flippant references to sexual harassment, but no actual harassment occurs on or off-screen
Why This Must Be Read: This is basically one long giant ball of adorable, especially if you're a big fan of the trope of bffs mutually pining for each other obliviously, WHICH I AM. Seriously, you guys, they are so fucking cute together, but also such ridiculous failboats, who mean so well but continually miss the huge obvious signs that they are totally in love with each other.
Rec #5: love today (anyway you want to)
Pairing: Girl!Taylor Hall/Jordan Eberle
Why This Must Be Read: Another story for this pairing because they are so cute together. This is a gorgeous friends to lovers slow burn. I love the depth of their friendship and the intimacy of their bond (he shaves her legs for her), and while most of the story is from Taylor's POV, the bits that are from Jordan's are so lovely and full of yearning. *happy sigh*
Rec #6: she's got you high (and you don't even know yet)
Authors: maleyka and ohtempora
Pairing: Girl!Ryan Ellis/Roman Josi, background M/M
Why This Must Be Read: READ IT BECAUSE FAKE DATING TROPE.
...oh, I'm sorry, you needed more of a reason? Okay, read this because it is ridiculously charming and hilarious. Ryan and Roman team up with Seth Jones, who is desperately into his teammate Shea Weber, but doesn't know how to begin a relationship with him. Ryan and Roman decide that OBVIOUSLY the answer is for them to pretend to date each other and invite Shea and Seth to hang out with them before finding ways to leave the two of them alone to "seal the deal" as it were. And along the way, Ryan and Roman fall for each other and maybe get a taste of their own medicine. The UST and the smut is smoking hot and this is just a gem of a story.
Rec #7: Night At Sea
Pairing: Girl!Phil Kessel/Tyler Bozak
Rating/Warning(s): E/NC-17, Mentions of cancer and fertility issues
Why This Must Be Read: Another wonderful friends to lovers story. This is a lovely, mature read with a female lead who's not conventionally slim or attractive, and who has recently fought back against breast cancer and is slightly insecure about her surgical scars. This is a beautiful expression of the idea that no matter what body you have, no matter what society tries to tell you is attractive, someone out there is going to love you and think you're insanely sexy because it's YOU and it's YOUR BODY, not in spite of your body type. A triumphant and sexy read, I enjoyed this a lot.
Rec #8: not so bulletproof
Pairing: Girl!Alex Galchenyuk/Brendan Gallagher
Why This Must Be Read: MOAR BFFS PINING FOR EACH OTHER FIC. This story also has interesting metacommentary on sexism and the media treatment of female athletes.
Rec #9: take me as i am
Pairing: Girl!Jamie Benn/Tyler Seguin
Rating/Warning(s): Not rated, but I'd say T/PG-13
Why This Must Be Read: More adorable best friends becoming lovers fic! Also features a great supporting cast in the form of Jamie's brother, Jordie, and Tricia Kane (girl!Kaner). ALSO THERE IS BED SHARING AND CLOTHES SHARING. YES GOOD.
Rec #10: For All of My Shortcomings (Welcome to My Homecoming)
Pairing: Girl!Patrick Roy/Adam Foote
Rating/Warning(s): M/R, Mentions of misogyny
Why This Must Be Read: Closing this out with the longest, most epic rec on the list. This actually features not a female hockey player, but a former female hockey player who comes back to her former team to become head coach. Along with rebuilding the team so they can be playoff contenders once more, Patrice Roy also has to learn how to work with her ex again, and along the way, they reconcile. This is an amazing and powerful read. Patrice is a firebrand with so much passion and heart for what she does, and I love that this story features an older, more mature couple, who divorced for understandable reasons, but now that they've grown and become wiser, they can forgive each other and rebuild their relationship.