Myths in Books

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. As you can tell from the title, today I’m going to be talking about myths in books. I saw this post over on the lovely Karina’s blog (Karina Reads) and liked it so much I thought I’d borrow the idea :). You can check out her post here. Basically I am going to be sharing books that are influenced by myths or are myth retelling. Let’s get started.

 

The Winternight trilogy / Katherine Arden / Russian folklore / ★★★★.5 / my review
This is an adult historical fantasy trilogy set in a medieval Russian village and is influenced by Russian folklore. So far two books are out – The Bear and the Nightingale and The Girl in the Tower. The third book, The Winter of the Witch, is set to be released on 10th January 2019. I have loved the first two books and would highly recommend checking this trilogy out. The setting is fantastic, the characters are so well written and the plot is compelling.

 

The Songs of Achilles / Madeleine Miller / Greek mythology / ★★
This is a rendering the Trojan War that focuses on the love affair between Achilles and Patroclus. I have always been interested in Greek mythology so I loved the setting, but this can also be enjoyed by people who have little to no prior knowledge of mythology. It was definitely a little slow at times and it did dragged for me at times, but overall I enjoyed this book.

 

The Penelopiad / Margaret Atwood / Greek mythology / ★★★ / my review
This is a retelling of Odyssey from the perspective of his wife, Penelope. I loved that this was told from Penelope’s perspective and found it so interesting to read a familiar story from a different angle. I love Atwood’s writing and I love how she has brought Penelope to life. Basically I think this is a fantastic book and well worth a read.

 

Daughter of the Forest / Juliet Marillier / the Children of Lir and the Six Swans / ★★★ 
Now I don’t actually know much about this particular legend, but this book is loosely based on the legend of the Children of Lir (Irish mythology) and the Six Swans (German legend)  – please correct me if I’m wrong. This is one of my all time favourite books and that is partly due to the fantastic setting. The writing is fantastic, the plot is compelling and there is a wonderful cast of characters. I highly recommend checking this book out.

 

Fudoki / Kij Johnson / Japanese mythology / ★★★ / my review
This book was inspired by Japanese mythology and one perspective is set during 11th century Japan. I am unsure whether this is based on one particular myth – it may just be that Japanese mythology was used as inspiration. This is one of my all time favourite books and I cannot say enough good things about it. It is a fantastic mix of fantasy and historical fiction.

 

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The Terracotta Bride / Zen Cho / Chinese mythology / ★.5
This is 51 page novella set in the Chinese afterlife. It’s such a unique and compelling setting with an intriguing plot and well written characters. I had never read anything by this author before but I definitely plan on reading more from her.

 

 

That’s all I have for today. I hope to do another post like this in the future, once I’ve read more books inspired by myths. I really enjoy books like these so I enjoyed putting this post together. What is your favourite myth retelling/books inspired by myths? I’d love to know if you have any recommendations for me. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

 

September Wrap Up and October TBR

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. It’s the end of the month, which means its time for another monthly wrap up post. You guys probably know the drill by now – each month a write mini reviews of the books I’ve read and then I share some books I plan to read. I had an alright month in September, although I didn’t get as much reading done as I could have because I was playing Shadow of the Tomb Raider instead. Also I’m sorry for the lighting in the pictures – I use natural lighting and sometimes it’s not as good as I would want. Anyway, let’s get started with the wrap up.

 

 

Bridge of Birds / Barry Hughart / ★★★
Set in medieval China, this follows Number Ten Ox and Master Li as they go on a quest to save a village from a plague. While I did really enjoy this book, I wasn’t the biggest fan of the writing style. I can’t really put my finger on why but something just didn’t quite work for me. The characters are really well written though and the plot is compelling throughout. I thought the world building was good too. If you’re looking for an East-Asian inspired fantasy book, or just for something a little bit different to typical fantasy books, then I highly recommend checking this book out.

 

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Legend / book 1 of the Drenai series / David Gemmell / ★★
The basic premise of this is a legendary warrior coming out of retirement to help defend against an incoming, conquering army. I really enjoyed the setting of this and thought that the characters were well written. My one issue with characters was the representation of women; this was first published in the 80’s and it is dated in how it portrays women. They are very much secondary characters and although they have some depth to them, I wanted more. I also wasn’t a fan of the speed at which two characters fall in love – it’s basically insta-love. Other than that, I had no issues with this book. I really enjoyed it and would recommend checking it out.

 

The Angel’s Game / book 2 of the Cemetery of Forgotten Books / Carlos Ruiz Zafon / ★★★.5
This is the sequel to The Shadow of the Wind. Although I did enjoy this book, I definitely didn’t love it as much as the first book. Once again the writing is great and it was easy to settle back into the writing style. The characters are well written and the plot is compelling. Overall this was a good book and I look forward to continuing on with this series.

 

The White Mirror / book 2 of the Li Du trilogy / Elsa Hart / ★★.5
This is the sequel to Jade Dragon Mountain. I really enjoyed the first book so I had high hopes for this book and it didn’t disappoint. In fact, I think I enjoyed this story more than the first one. The characters are well written, the plot is compelling and I love the setting of 18th century China. The atmosphere is really well done. Basically this was an enjoyable mystery book and I will definitely be checking out the next book in this trilogy.

 

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Soulbinder / book 4 of the Spellslinger series / Sebastien de Castell / ★★
Another fantastic instalment to this series. I am planning to have a full review of this book up next week, so I’m not going to go into to much detail now. All I’ll say is that this is such a entertaining series and I highly recommend checking it out. The next book in the series, Queenslayer, is set to be released on the 2nd May 2019.

 

Blood of the Gods / book 2 of the Ascension Cycle / David Mealing / ★★
This was a fantastic continuation of this trilogy. I loved the first book so I had high hopes for this sequel and it didn’t disappoint. Mealing did a great job at building on what we know from book 1 and it was great to be back in this world. The character development was really well done and I loved the direction of the plot. I will be writing a full review of this so keep an eye out for that. I highly recommend checking this series out.

 

Circe / Madeleine Miller / ★★
I thought this book was fantastic. Personally, I enjoyed this book more than her previous one, The Song of Achilles. I loved how Miller brought life to Circe. All of the characters were well written and I loved how Circe is neither good or bad; she’s a mix of both.  I find Greek mythology really interesting, so I loved the setting of this book. The writing is great and I found it so easy to settle into the story. If you enjoyed Miller’s other book, then you will definitely love this book too. If you haven’t pick this book up yet I highly recommend you do.

 

Valour / book 2 of the Faithful and the Fallen series / John Gwynne / ★★
This book was so good. I’ve been aware of this series for quite some time and I can’t believe to took me this long to read it. I loved the direction of the plot and was engrossed in the story from very early on. There are a lot of characters to keep track of, but there is a character list that you can refer back to which is helpful. As with the first book this sequel switches between multiple perspective; each of which is distinctive. I cannot say enough good things about the first two books in this series. I have the last two books on my shelves waiting to be read. I highly recommend checking this series out.

 

That’s it for today. I’m not going to set myself a TBR for October, although I do have a vague idea of some books I want to get to. Obviously I’d like to continue reading the Faithful and the Fallen series by reading the third book, Ruin. Other books high up on my TBR include Lamentation by C. J. Sansom and A Veil of Spears by Bradley Beaulieu. I’m currently reading Dragon Sword and Wind Child by Noriko Ogiwara. There are quite a few other books that I could pick up instead though. What was your favourite book from the past month? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

 

Pippa

 

 

 

T5W: Favourite Covers

Top 5 Wednesday was originally created and run by Lainey aka gingerreadslainey (Youtube channel) but it is now being run by Sam aka Thoughts on tomes (Youtube channel). Each week there is a different topic. You can check out the groups Goodreads page here for any more information and the future topics. This week’s topic is favourite covers. There are so many amazing book covers so it’s going to be hard limiting it to just five, but I’ll give it a go :). I’ve chosen from books that I’ve read this year. Let’s get started.

 

  • The Bitter Twins / book 2 of the Winnowing Flame trilogy / Jen Williams
  • The Hyena and the Hawk / book 3 of the Echoes of the Fall trilogy / Adrian Tchaikovsky
  • The Beast Player / Nahoko Uehashi
  • Wrath of Empire / book 2 in the Gods of Blood and Powder trilogy / Brian McClellan
  • The Book of M / Peng Shepherd

 

 

I’m definitely planning on doing a post on my favourite covers of 2018 at the end of the year so keep an eye out for that. What do you look for in book covers? Do you prefer simple covers or more vibrant ones? I’d love to know. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

 

Pippa

 

 

 

TTT: Books By My Favourite Authors I Haven’t Read Yet

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Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.This weeks topic is books by my favourite authors I haven’t read yet. I will read these books at some point but I haven’t managed to get to them yet. Let’s get started.

 

 

Hopefully I’ll get to this books soon. High on my priority list are Tigana and The Reindeer People. What books by your favourite authors do you still need to read? I’d love to know. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

9 Ongoing Series I’m Loving

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. There are a lot of series I’m in the middle of so I thought I thought I’d take this opportunity to share some of them. These are all series that haven’t been completed yet; some will be completed next year, others still have a few books to be released. I’ve loved all of these series so I would highly recommend checking them out. Let’s get started.

 

 

I’m very excited to continue each of these series, although I’m abit sad about the wait for the sequels. What series have you been loving? Have you read any of these? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

 

Pippa

 

 

 

 

5 Reasons to read The Count of Monte Cristo

Title / The Count of Monte Cristo
Author / Alexandre Dumas
Publication Date / 1844
Page no. / 1462
Overall Rating / 
It’s time for another 5 reasons to read style review and as you can see from the title today I am going to be talking about The Count of Monte Cristo. I have to admit putting off reading this book for quite a long time because of the size, but I ended up loving it so don’t be intimidated by the size.
  • Originally written in French, this is a fantastic revenge tale. The basics of this tale is that a young man called Edmond Dantes is betrayed and ends up spending 14 years in prison. He comes back to seek revenge against those that betrayed him. I thought that the plot was compelling throughout, although I will admit that it took me a couple of chapters to settle into the flow of the story.
  • Dantes is a fantastic protagonist and an interesting character study. This book spans many years and I loved being able to see Dantes development throughout. Although I think all of the characters were well written, I think some secondary characters seemed a little less developed then Dantes but since this is Dantes story it kind of makes sense.
  • The writing is fantastic and will keep you engaged throughout this long book. Even in the slower paced sections, the writing and characters keep you invested. However I will admit that it dragged a tiny bit a few times but I still love this book.
  • I think this book can be enjoyed by a variety of readers and ages. I will definitely reread this book at some point because I think I’ll pick up on things I may have missed during the first read.
  • I am a big fan of this author and this is one of my favourite books by him, so of course I want to recommend checking it out. My other favourite is The Three Musketeers, for anyone interested.

 

Since this was originally published in instalments, it may be a good idea to read it in instalments or just set yourself a certain amount of chapters per week to make it seem more manageable. Do not be intimidated by the size and just take your time reading this fantastic book. Have you read this book? I’d love to know what you thought. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

 

The Bookshelf Magazine Tag

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. So there is a new online bookish magazine being released in October and in honour of its releases, the creator (Harriet Rose) has made a tag. I’ve written two articles that will be released in October and so I wanted to do this tag to spread the word about the magazine. It’s called Bookshelf Magazine and you can check out it’s twitter here. It’s launching on October 1st so be sure to check out it then.You can subscribe to the mag here.  Let’s get started.

 

 

Author Spotlight: An author you’ve read a lot of books from
I have two authors I want to mention for this one. Firstly, I’ve read 21 books by Garth Nix; the Old kingdom series, the Keys to the Kingdom series, the Seventh Tower series, To Hold the Bridge and Shade’s Children. Secondly, I’ve read 18 books by Robin Hobb; the Realm of the Elderlings series and Shaman’s Crossing.

 

Book review: A book you could talk about for hours
There are a lot of books that could fit into this category. I can always talk about some of my favourite books, for example Watership Down by Richard Adams and To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I can also always talk about my fantasy books, although I’m not super talkative.

 

Interviews: A bookish content creator whose brains you’d love to pick
Maybe Jen Campbell… I love her channel and would actually just really enjoy talking books with her, especially because we both adore His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman.

 

Inside Indie Bookstores: Are they any indie bookstores in your area?
There is a small independent book store in my small town. It’s a great place and it’s always nice to visit independent book store.

 

Genre recommendations: Favourite genre
Obviously, it’s fantasy. It’s been my favourite genre since I was a teenager and I don’t see it changing anytime soon.

 

Opinion piece: A bookish opinion you feel strongly about
Maybe breaking spines… I like to keep my books in good condition and I hate broken spines. Obviously not judging those that do but for me personally I don’t do it. I’m also not a fan of dog earring pages, although I have to admit to doing it when I was younger.

 

Creator recommendations: Recommend a book blogger, booktuber or bookstagrammer
It’s always great to spread the love so I’m going to be recommending some of each category.

 

Book blogger:

 

Booktuber:

 

Bookstagrammer:

 

Readathon Round ups: Favourite readathon
I haven’t actually taken part in many readathons but I think there a great idea. I’ve participated in two a couple of times and really liked it. The first one is called Bout of Books; it lasts for a week and the next one is set to start in January. The second one is called Tome Topple; this one last two books and is all about reading books over 500 pages. I’ve enjoyed taking part in both of these readathons.

 

Publishing trends: A trope in enjoy.
Despite it’s overuse I’m still a fan of the Chosen one, if it’s done right. Other ones I like include a school setting and an antagonist turned ally. It actually took me a while to come up with this answer – my mind went completely blank on tropes :).

 

 

That’s all for today. I tag whoever is reading this and wants to do the tag. I hope you will keep an eye out for the release of Bookshelf Magazine on October 1st. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa