Myths and Legends: The World’s Oldest Stories
It’s the beginning of December and after a snowy weekend here in the UK things are very much beginning to feel like winter. With it’s dark nights and cold weather winter has always been the perfect time to tell stories. Throuhgout the whole of history there have been stories, even before we had books or writing and they were passed from generation to generation during nights like these. Since then we have come a long way but many are still interested in hearing or reading these old stories we now know as myths and legends. Moreso now than ever these old timeless myths and legends are being re-written or told from other perspectives, and that is what we have collected for you this week.
The Witch’s Heart by Genevieve Gornichec
Angrboda’s story begins where most witches’ tales end: with a burning. Punished by Odin for refusing to provide him with knowledge of the future, she flees into the farthest reaches of a remote forest. It is here that she begins her life again, finding love and starting a family whose destiny is already foretold. From the most ancient of tales, this novel forges a story of love, loss, and hope for the modern age.
Ariadne by Jennifer Saint
When Theseus, Prince of Athens, arrives in Crete as a sacrifice to the beast, Ariadne falls in love with him. But helping Theseus kill the monster means betraying her family and country, and Ariadne knows only too well that in a world ruled by mercurial gods – drawing their attention can cost you everything. Ariadne gives a voice to the forgotten women of one of the most famous Greek myths and speaks to their strength in the face of angry, petulant Gods.
Kuan Yin: The Princess Who Became the Goddess of Compassion by Maya Van Der Meer
Miao Shan isn’t your typical princess. Miao Shan’s heart is so full of love that her dream is to spread happiness throughout the land and help people endlessly. But her father has other plans for her – he intends to have her married and remain in the palace. With the help of her little sister Ling, Miao Shan escapes and begins her journey to discover the true meaning of compassion.
The Women of Troy by Pat Barker
Troy has fallen. The Greeks have won their bitter war. They can return home victors, all they need is a good wind to lift their sails. But the wind does not come. And, in these empty, restless days, the hierarchies that held them together begin to fray, old feuds resurface and new suspicions fester. Briseis remains largely unnoticed in a Greek encampment, she has survived the Trojan War but peacetime may turn out to be even more dangerous.
Treasury of Folktales – Seas and Rivers: Sirens, Selkies and Ghost Ships by Dee Dee Chainey and Willow Winsham
Folklore of the seas and rivers have a resonance in cultures all over the world. Watery hopes, fears and dreams are shared by all peoples where rivers flow and waves crash. This fascinating book covers English sailor superstitions and shape-shifting pink dolphins of the Amazon, the many guises of Mami Wata, the tale of the Yoruba River spirit, the water horses of the Scottish lochs, the infamous mystery of the Bermuda Triangle, and much more.
Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
The Jazz Age is in full swing, but Casiopea Tun is too busy cleaning the floors of her wealthy grandfather’s house to listen to any fast tunes. Nevertheless, she dreams of a life far from her dusty small town in southern Mexico. A life she can call her own. In the company of the strangely alluring god, Casiopea begins an adventure that will take her on a cross-country odyssey from the jungles of Yucatán to the bright lights of Mexico City – and deep into the darkness of the Mayan underworld.
The Norse Myths: Stories of The Norse Gods and Heroes Vividly Retold by Dr Tom Birkett
The Norse Myths takes us on a thrilling journey through the Norse cosmos, from the creation of the world to Ragnarok, the final world-destroying conflict; via the Nine Worlds, and the exploits of the mighty gods and goddesses – mystical Odin, malicious Loki, mighty Thor and more – and their quarrel with the giants. As well as a treasure trove of these epic stories of heroism and cruelty, squabbles and seductions, The Norse Myths is a comprehensive study of their origins, survival and interpretations.
Love in Color: Mythical Tales from Around the World Retold by Bolu Babalola
A high-born Nigerian goddess, who has been beaten down and unappreciated by her gregarious lover, longs to be truly seen. A young businesswoman attempts a great leap in her company and an even greater one in her love life. A powerful Ghanaian spokeswoman is forced to decide whether she should uphold her family’s politics or be true to her heart. Focusing on the magical folktales of West Africa, Babalola also reimagines Greek myths, ancient legends from the Middle East, and stories from long-erased places.
Mythical Creatures and Magical Beasts by Zayden Stone
We have all heard of at least one mythological beast in some form or another but all of them have roots in the myths and legends of ancient cultures. If you have a love for the myths and want to learn about the unique beasts that dwell within them, this book is a great way to do it. Not only will you learn about ones you may have never heard of, but you will also be able to draw parallels between cultures and see how they interpreted their surroundings through stories of mythical creatures and magical beasts.
Pandora’s Jar: Women in Greek Myths by Natalie Haynes
Modern tellers of Greek myth have usually been men, and have routinely shown little interest in telling women’s stories. And when they do, those women are often painted as monstrous, vengeful or just plain evil. But Pandora – the first woman, who according to legend unloosed chaos upon the world – was not a villain, and even Medea and Phaedra have more nuanced stories than generations of retellings might indicate.