Varian’s Recommendations

Varian the Toadshifter, with a hand over his heart, with a staff, shield, sword, and bow around him. A sewing needle and thread is above his head, lit up for emphasis.

One of the Pond’s inhabitants, Varian the Toadshifter, is working hard to improve their skills in sewing to create lovely costumes.

Every time you visit Varian and they have something to show you, they’ll also recommend some books that inspired their costume. You can read a little more about Varian’s life and story here!


You approach the Pond during one of your visits. You think about Varian the Toadshifter, and how you would like to revisit your memories to see their costumes again. The Pond emits a soft purple pulse of light in response to your silent question, and its magic envelopes you as it takes you back to the past.

varian - diverseanthologies

Remember Varian’s very first costume? It was a rainbow and they had recommended some diverse anthologies that inspired their costume. They also told you more about their story, explained what a Toadshifter was and what they do, and how they ended up in the Pond.

You can visit this memory here.


Varian the toad wearing a panda costume, holding onto a red cup with tea.Varian’s second costume was a lot cuter and fluffier! They dressed up as a giant panda for the Year of the Asian Reading Challenge that Xiaolong is hosting and they recommended some books with tropes, all by Asian authors!

You can visit this memory here.


Varian the green toad wearing armour, holding a sword in front of them.Varian’s third costume was something completely new and different! They dressed up as a warrior for the Year of the Asian Reading Challenge, and they recommended some Asian books that had themes of power.

You can visit this memory here.


Varian the green toad, holding up a fabric with a rainbow infinity symbol and rainbow heart stitched into it.Varian didn’t have a costume to share, but they did some cross-stitching! They stitched a rainbow infinity symbol and rainbow heart for Autistic Pride Month, and they recommended books by autistic authors about autistic characters.

You can visit this memory here.

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