Best Book Ever: Mythology!



This week for Best Book Ever, I asked our participants to share their favorite books involving mythology. More than a year ago, we talked about Greek Mythology, but this time around, I widened up the topic so we could look at any kind of myths -- so bring me your Celtic, your Norse, your Japanese... whatever strikes your fancy. These may be retellings, original source texts, modern day versions, etc. Check out our selections and let us know what you think in the comments.



A great, under-appreciated mythology writer for MG & YA is Clemence McClaren. INSIDE THE WALLS OF TROY is a great retelling of the Trojan War from the POV of the women in the situation, specifically Cassandra and Helen of Troy.

Mindy McGinnis - Not a Drop to Drink (September 9, 2013; Katherine Tegen Books) 

As much as I love Greek mythology and fairy tales, these days I am thrilled whenever I encounter a story that delves into other mythologies that I am much less familiar with. This is a big part of why I adored Guardian of the Dead by Karen Healey. (The other big part is that it was written by Karen Healey and it's kind of brilliant.) This was a standout debut novel (published in 2010), set in New Zealand with Maori myths deeply woven into the plot. The book subverts many YA tropes with some of the most realistic and complex characters I've encountered in teen fiction, and the plot is intricate and riveting with murder and mysteries and magic. The story is dark, the writing is beautiful, and I just can't recommend it enough. If you enjoy it, Healey's second novel, The Shattering, has some similar elements and is also very good. Which reminds me, I still need to read her latest, When We Wake; it seems to be a departure from her first two books, but I look forward to seeing what she does with science fiction.

E.C. Myers - Quantum Coin (October 23, 2012; Pyr) 


Most recently, I really enjoyed Justina Ireland's VENGEANCE BOUND. It's a modern day YA novel with a really imaginative manifestation of the Greek Furies. It's exciting and gritty and very hard to put down.

Lydia Kang - Control (December 19, 2013; Dial Books for Young Readers)

One of my favorite mythological books is Of Poseidon by Anna Banks. It isn't based on any particular myth, but takes mermaid lore and very cleverly creates its own history and mythology from it. Besides its use of mermaid mythology, it's a super fun beach read with lots of humor and romance!

Debz @ Debz Bookshelf

A hard topic this week for BBE. Narrowing it down to just one fave book was not something I could do. So I choose to mention two series that I LOVE LOVE LOVE. The first series that I rave about all the time is the Gods & Monsters series by Kelly Keaton. This series has it all and it involves Medusa!!! Then my second choice is the Abandon series by Meg Cabot. This is one Underworld I wouldn't mind visiting. Hope you check those out if you haven't read either series yet.

Yara @ Once Upon a Twilight

Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow is a retelling of the story East of the Sun West of the Moon from Norse Mythology. I am a big fan of this version- Jessica Day George is one of my favorite authors when it comes to retelling fables and tales. If you haven't checked out this book yet- you absolutely need to. It has tons of fantasy and romance and it such a fun take on the myth.

Coranne

Since I wasn't blogging here at the time we talked about Greek mythology, I'm going to go with one of those stories and pick The Song of Achilles.  This book got one of my rare five-star reviews whenever I reviewed it last year.  It's a retelling of the Iliad, giving a backstory to Patroclus and Achilles that will keep you turning pages and will make you weep by the end.  It's a bit of a dense read, but Madeline Miller has an exquisite way with words that is worlds beyond most of what I read these days.

Sarah
Go ahead and share your favorites in the comments!

If you're interested in participating in Best Book Ever, let us know!  Just leave us a comment or send an email to oneminutebooks at gmail and we'll get you set up!

3 comments:

  1. Sun and moon, Ice and snow is a great retelling! I really enjoyed that story and George's writing-style is wonderful.

    Mel@thedailyprophecy.

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  2. I liked Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow. However, I think East by Edith Pattou is a better retelling of the Norse myth. It's been awhile since I read it, but I remember it as a great book and one of my all time favs.

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  3. Even though she invented her own mythology, I'm going to have to go with Megan Whalen Turner's Queen's Thief series.

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