Monday, 15 March 2021

#5OnMyTBR | Mythology

This meme was created by E. @ Local Bee Hunter's Nook and you can find the announcement post here. Also, side note, these aren't necessarily books that I own physically but they're all on my Goodreads TBR and they'll mostly be the five most recently added.  

This Week's Prompt is...

Mythology, a genre of fiction I've really been getting into lately. I love learning about the original tales and then the author putting their own twists on them.
 
Piranesi's house is no ordinary building: its rooms are infinite, its corridors endless, its walls are lined with thousands upon thousands of statues, each one different from all the others. Within the labyrinth of halls an ocean is imprisoned; waves thunder up staircases, rooms are flooded in an instant. But Piranesi is not afraid; he understands the tides as he understands the pattern of the labyrinth itself. He lives to explore the house.

There is one other person in the house—a man called The Other, who visits Piranesi twice a week and asks for help with research into A Great and Secret Knowledge. But as Piranesi explores, evidence emerges of another person, and a terrible truth begins to unravel, revealing a world beyond the one Piranesi has always known.
 
I'm not sure that this is based on particular myth but a lot of people have described it as having elements of mythology and fantasy so we're just gonna go with it! It's also got an infinite labyrinth and a weird but wonderful premise.
 

2. The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden

 
The Bear and the Nightingale, Katherine Arden’s enchanting first novel, introduced readers to an irresistible heroine. Vasilisa has grown up at the edge of a Russian wilderness, where snowdrifts reach the eaves of her family’s wooden house and there is truth in the fairy tales told around the fire. Vasilisa’s gift for seeing what others do not won her the attention of Morozko—Frost, the winter demon from the stories—and together they saved her people from destruction. But Frost’s aid comes at a cost, and her people have condemned her as a witch.

In The Girl in the Tower, Vasilisa faces an impossible choice. Driven from her home by frightened villagers, she has only two options left: marriage or the convent. She cannot bring herself to accept either fate and instead chooses adventure, dressing herself as a boy and setting off astride her magnificent stallion Solovey.
 
 
Drawing on Russian folklore, this second book in the Winternight trilogy promises more adventure, demons and an impossible choice. A little ashamed that I still haven't found the time to continue this series!
 

3. Mermaid Moon by Susann Cokal   

 
Sanna is a mermaid — but she is only half seavish. The night of her birth, a sea-witch cast a spell that made Sanna’s people, including her landish mother, forget how and where she was born. Now Sanna is sixteen and an outsider in the seavish matriarchy, and she is determined to find her mother and learn who she is. She apprentices herself to the witch to learn the magic of making and unmaking, and with a new pair of legs and a quest to complete for her teacher, she follows a clue that leads her ashore on the Thirty-Seven Dark Islands. There, as her fellow mermaids wait in the sea, Sanna stumbles into a wall of white roses thirsty for blood, a hardscrabble people hungry for miracles, and a baroness who will do anything to live forever.
 
This book obviously focuses on the mythological creatures mermaids and is a retelling of The Little Mermaid. I haven't heard too many people talk about this book but I was enchanted by that gorgeous cover and then the dark fairytale premise sealed the deal. 

4. Circe by Madeline Miller

 
In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe is a strange child - not powerful, like her father, nor viciously alluring like her mother. Turning to the world of mortals for companionship, she discovers that she does possess power - the power of witchcraft, which can transform rivals into monsters and menace the gods themselves.

Threatened, Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, where she hones her occult craft, tames wild beasts and crosses paths with many of the most famous figures in all of mythology, including the Minotaur, Daedalus and his doomed son Icarus, the murderous Medea, and, of course, wily Odysseus.

But there is danger, too, for a woman who stands alone, and Circe unwittingly draws the wrath of both men and gods, ultimately finding herself pitted against one of the most terrifying and vengeful of the Olympians. To protect what she loves most, Circe must summon all her strength and choose, once and for all, whether she belongs with the gods she is born from, or the mortals she has come to love.
 
Miller apparently writes amazing books inspired by Greek mythology and she's definitely an author that a lot of people recommend if you're looking for books to do with mythology. Circe sounds incredible and I just need that push to pick it up.

5. The City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty

 
Nahri has never believed in magic. Certainly, she has power; on the streets of 18th century Cairo, she’s a con woman of unsurpassed talent. But she knows better than anyone that the trade she uses to get by—palm readings, zars, healings—are all tricks, sleights of hand, learned skills; a means to the delightful end of swindling Ottoman nobles.

But when Nahri accidentally summons an equally sly, darkly mysterious djinn warrior to her side during one of her cons, she’s forced to accept that the magical world she thought only existed in childhood stories is real. For the warrior tells her a new tale: across hot, windswept sands teeming with creatures of fire, and rivers where the mythical marid sleep; past ruins of once-magnificent human metropolises, and mountains where the circling hawks are not what they seem, lies Daevabad, the legendary city of brass, a city to which Nahri is irrevocably bound.

In that city, behind gilded brass walls laced with enchantments, behind the six gates of the six djinn tribes, old resentments are simmering. And when Nahri decides to enter this world, she learns that true power is fierce and brutal. That magic cannot shield her from the dangerous web of court politics. That even the cleverest of schemes can have deadly consequences.

After all, there is a reason they say be careful what you wish for...
 
Taking inspiration from Middle Eastern mythology, so many people have fallen under the spell of this series. I'm usually wary when it comes to pure fantasy but I have a feeling this could become a new favourite (hopefully, seeing as I already bought the whole trilogy!)
 

Which books inspired by mythology are on your TBR? If you've already read some of these, let me know what you thought! Leave a comment with your own #5OnMyTBR posts for me to check out! Happy Reading!

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