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Pick-a-Shelf: Monthly -Archive > 2011-03 - Mythology - Post March Reviews Here

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message 1: by Slayermel (new)

Slayermel | 664 comments I can't believe February is pretty much done, it went by so fast. Can't wait to see what you read for March.


message 2: by Mita (new)

Mita (mitab) | 104 comments I finally managed to participate again, so psyched!

I read The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan. Some of my friends have read this and the opinions are very divided. Overall, it was a good read. It wasn't great, and the story is almost as predictable as a teenage hero stories. However, the Greek mythology implementation is rather interesting. I enjoyed how they are characterised and adapted into the modern world. This book would've been a lot better if the writing had somehow been more engaging, but even so I'm probably going to pick up the sequel in the future. Three stars from me!


message 3: by Vivian (new)

Vivian (_vivian) | 192 comments So I didn't read it for the mythology shelf, but it happened to be there when I checked shelves for ROAR.

River Marked by Patricia Briggs. It's book 6 of the series, and not sure the earlier ones would qualify as mythology. This one involves a lot about the main character's Native American heritage, which I guess is where the 'mythology' comes in.

I love this series, it's an urban fantasy revolving around a kick-butt car mechanic who is a walker (can shift into a coyote). Okay, my brief description probably doesn't sell the series, but I do think it's great so I thought I'd share :)


message 4: by Susan (new)

Susan | 3441 comments Mod
I'm starting with books that are really mythology, before I branch off into things that simply appeal to me from the shelf. The Mabinogion are Welsh folk tales. I guess I have to say I'm glad I read it, but I found a lot of it confusing. My review here .


message 5: by Dee (new)

Dee (austhokie) | 2569 comments I need to read this one, but i still have to read 4 and 5...i went to a signing by her the other night and she read a section of RM - looking forward to reading it

Vivian wrote: "So I didn't read it for the mythology shelf, but it happened to be there when I checked shelves for ROAR.

River Marked by Patricia Briggs. It's book 6 of the series, and not sure t..."



message 6: by Lynne (new)

Lynne (lmsindel) Just finished The Castle of Llyr this morning. I would give it 3*. It was fine, but definitely a children's book. The writing and the action were even a little too tame to be called YA I think. I guess I an spoiled after getting so involved the the sophisticated style of other series such as Dragon Prince by Melanie Rawn and A Game of Thrones byGeorge R.R. Martin.

THe main thing I didn't like were the many times when the plot could have gone more in depth but all of the sudden "when they returned to the castle" and there was no explanation of how they got there etc.

I will probably finish the other 2 books in the series in the future.


message 7: by Lynne (new)

Lynne (lmsindel) I picked up this book because I realized that beside the fact that he was famous for killing a dragon I knew nothing about the story of St. George. I liked this book a lot. I am interested to read more stories about St. Gearge as I know that they often vary and I want to glean the "real story". The artwork in this book was fantastic.

4*


message 8: by Lynne (new)

Lynne (lmsindel) The story line for this book was less about Pegasus and more about the Greek hero who rides him. I was fine but brief. THe artwork on the other had was absolutely beautiful. 3*


message 9: by Vivian (new)

Vivian (_vivian) | 192 comments Delicious Dee Challenge Addict wrote: "I need to read this one, but i still have to read 4 and 5...i went to a signing by her the other night and she read a section of RM - looking forward to reading it

Vivian wrote: "So I didn't read ..."


There's a signing about an hour away from me tomorrow, but I'll be working :(


message 10: by Dee (new)

Dee (austhokie) | 2569 comments Vivian wrote: "Delicious Dee Challenge Addict wrote: "I need to read this one, but i still have to read 4 and 5...i went to a signing by her the other night and she read a section of RM - looking forward to readi..."

it was soo worth it - she was uber nice...I ended up waiting nearly 2 hours to get my book signed - and ihad to be up at 4am the next day...its unfortunate you have to work


message 11: by Vivian (new)

Vivian (_vivian) | 192 comments That's exciting to hear. Love hearing stories about nice authors who appreciate their fans :)


message 12: by LynnB (last edited Mar 06, 2011 02:30PM) (new)

LynnB | 1623 comments I just finished Iliad of Homer. I think I read this once before, many (many, many) years ago. It's an good read about the battle of Troy after Paris stole Helen from her husband. A story of love, vengeance and daring deeds. I give it 4 stars.


message 13: by Cathy (new)

Cathy | 90 comments I've gotten a bit out of order with my reading, so this was read partly in Feb, and now I'm reading a science book.
I read The Death of King Arthur: The Immortal Legend by Peter Ackroyd which is a retelling of the classic Morte d'Arthur by Malory. Whether a lot of flavour has been lost in translation I'm not sure, but it was very flat - a catalogue of battles and "adventures" but not very exciting unfortunately!


message 14: by Lynne (new)

Lynne (lmsindel) Cathy wrote: "I've gotten a bit out of order with my reading, so this was read partly in Feb, and now I'm reading a science book.
I read The Death of King Arthur: The Immortal Legend by [author:P..."


Thanks for the review. With so many good King Arthur books out there I think I will skip this one.


message 15: by Susan (new)

Susan | 3441 comments Mod
I just read Greenwitch. I'd read the first two books in this series years ago, and had forgotten to get back to it. It's a fun fantasy-adventure for older children or younger young-adults, with plenty of Cornwall mythology thrown in. My review here .


message 16: by Kristen (new)

Kristen | 38 comments I just finished reading Preludes and Nocturnes, The Doll's House, and Dream Country by Neil Gaiman. Since they are graphic novels they didn't take too long to read but I have to admit that I was surprised at how heavy some of the stories were to take in. I am very familiar with Neil Gaiman's work but there was something different about these first few Sandman books that I guess I wasn't expecting. It's an odd sort of thing that I can't fully explain. I'm planning on reading all of the Sandman books so maybe I'll be able to elaborate a bit more on this odd feeling I get from the books once I am finished.


message 17: by [deleted user] (new)

I agree with your review. Just exactly what I was thinking.
Mitzie wrote: "I finally managed to participate again, so psyched!

I read The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan. Some of my friends have read this and the opinions are very divided. Ov..."



message 18: by Serenity (new)

Serenity | 21 comments I read The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin, and liked it a lot! My review is here.


message 19: by Slayermel (last edited Mar 09, 2011 05:06PM) (new)

Slayermel | 664 comments Lynne in message 8 & 9 which books are you reviewing, I want to add them to our bookshelf but I seem to be a little slow on the up take today as your reviews went right over my head ;op


message 20: by Lynne (new)

Lynne (lmsindel) Huh, how funny that I didn't put the names of the books. Time to put me out to pasture I guess. I am happy to go as long as I can take a book with me!

THe books are Saint George and the Dragon and Pegasus.


message 21: by Slayermel (new)

Slayermel | 664 comments Thanks Lynne I've added them to the shelf ;op


message 22: by Slayermel (new)

Slayermel | 664 comments Finished my first from the Mythology shelf, I actually listened to an Audio play Sci-Fi Channels Presents: Seeing Ear Theatre Dramatization on the the History of the Devil *** It was very entertaining, not something I usually do, but a nice change.


Lyn (Readinghearts) (lsmeadows) | 2814 comments Mod
Lynne wrote: "Huh, how funny that I didn't put the names of the books. Time to put me out to pasture I guess. I am happy to go as long as I can take a book with me!

THe books are [book:Saint George and the ..."


Hey, there are plenty of pastures where you live to put you out in ;P and, IMAGINE you reading a book about Pegasus. What a surprise :o


message 24: by Debbie (new)

Debbie  (db_debber) | 101 comments Was and still am planning on reading something else, but drifting through the Mythology shelf I found that another book that I was reading was there. Wicked Lovely is a young adult story about a fairy King searching for his Queen. I did a review and posted it here if you want to read it.


message 25: by Slayermel (new)

Slayermel | 664 comments I just finished Preludes and Nocturnes by Neil Gaiman and I really enjoyed it. I give it *****, and have added it to my favorites, I guess what it comes down to is I have yet to read something from Neil Gaiman's imagination that I have not loved.
My review here


message 26: by Dee (new)

Dee (austhokie) | 2569 comments I finished up Oh. My. Gods. tonight - it reminded me of that movie Mean Girls (before Lindsey Lohan went psycho) but with a mythological base...Phoebe is a high school senior who's mom marries a headmaster of an elite school in Greece - she shows up to find out that the students are all descendants of Greek Gods and Goddesses and she is the odd one out because she isn't...I enjoyed it and it was a nice short read...I have the second one in the pile and hope to get to it soon


message 27: by Susan (last edited Mar 15, 2011 05:33AM) (new)

Susan | 3441 comments Mod
One of the Neil Gaiman books I picked up is Odd and the Frost Giants, a children's book which has some characters from Norse mythology. It's an easy, quick read, and fun, but not spectacular. My review here .


message 28: by Dee (new)

Dee (austhokie) | 2569 comments also read Goddess Boot Camp - the second in the series of the one I read above...it was cute, a bit more entertaining seeing some of the problems Phoebe had trying to learn to control her powers


message 29: by Lahni (last edited Mar 15, 2011 12:49PM) (new)

Lahni | 638 comments I finished The Graveyard Book and gave it 4 stars.
I thought it was a clever story. It was not, however, a book I couldn't put down. The practical side of me also wondered how Bod was going to survive in the real world when he had never spent much time there. I do think it would make a good movie.


message 30: by Lynne (new)

Lynne (lmsindel) I finished Beowulf and gave it 3*

This was a good way to quickly get the high points of the story. A much easier read than the Old English version.


message 31: by Debbie (last edited Mar 16, 2011 03:32PM) (new)

Debbie | 1 comments I was in Oregon last week and bought about 50 books, including quite a few on mythology. I'm just learning about it and got lucky.
it was so much fun. Many for a buck!

Some of my books from Oregon indie shops and thrift stores:

Joseph Campbell-
The Masks of God VI Primitive Mythology
Myths To Live By

Carl Jung-
Man and His Symbols

Alan Watts-
The Joyous Cosmology: Adventures in the Chemistry of Consciousness [
Behold the Spirit: A Study in the Necessity of Mystical Religion
Beyond Theology


Wise Women of the Dream Time

Where the River Roared: Tales of the Wishom

Creations Heartbeat: Following the Reindeer Spirit

Search For the Great Turtle Mother

ANIMALS, MEN, AND MYTHS by Lewinsohn

God and the Goddesses-
Vision, Poetry, and Belief in the Middle Ages

Flights Into Yesterday;: The story of aerial archaeology [Hardcover]


message 32: by Pollyanna (new)

Pollyanna (polly8) | 94 comments I finished The Odyssey by Homer yesterday and gave it 2 stars. I feel a bit bad for my rating because this book is such a classic but I found it quite dull. I often got quite confused by the story and felt that half the time I was just reading the words and not the story.

There were a few parts I did like, I enjoyed the cyclops story especially but it just wasn't my cup of tea. I'd like to thank you though Cadniss because I would never had read this book otherwise and at least I can now say I gave it a go and can cross another classic off my list. :)


message 33: by Crystal (new)

Crystal Pollyanna wrote: "I finished The Odyssey by Homer yesterday and gave it 2 stars. I feel a bit bad for my rating because this book is such a classic but I found it quite dull. I often got qui..."

I read
The Odyssey by Gareth Hinds and enjoyed it way more than I did when I read the longer version. I am not usually reading many graphic novels, but this one was actually quite good and made the Odyssey much more fun for me. I liked the illustrations and it certainly simplified the story.


message 34: by Slayermel (new)

Slayermel | 664 comments I just finished listening to The golden fleece and the heroes who lived before Achilles by Padraic Colum I gave it **

My review is here


message 35: by Tara (last edited Mar 20, 2011 02:47PM) (new)

Tara | 742 comments Finished Ain't Myth-Behaving. Which was pretty cute... Kind of a romance/chick lit with a dose of Mythology. Very light and sometimes funny.

I also finished His Majesty's Dragon which is on the Mythology shelf...I am guessing because there are dragons in it. It was different than what I thought but pretty good. Much more of an Alt. history with dragons the world of fantasy that I was thinking it would be, but good if you like military focused books.


message 36: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 286 comments Managed to read A Midsummer Night's Dream as it quite a short play. For those who aren't familiar with the plot, it's a silly romantic comedy about what happens when the King and Queen of the Fairies have a falling out and mortals happen to get in the way.
Still quite funny 400 years after it was written. I gave it 4 stars.


message 37: by LynnB (new)

LynnB | 1623 comments I read half of Beowulf but couldn't finish. I read it all the way through in high school and disliked it. This time I liked it more (maybe a better translation?), but it still didn't hold my interest that much. Ancient battle that involves dragons and Denmark. I finally gave it up to read other books.


message 38: by Candiss (last edited Mar 20, 2011 10:45AM) (new)

Candiss (tantara) I completely forgot to post a review of Autobiography of Red by Anne Carson! I read it right at the beginning of the month.

I gave the book 3 stars. There were aspects of it that I would have given 4 stars, yet my overall impression merits only 2, hence an average of 3. I feel a bit bad giving such a mediocre rating, as the structure of the book is gutsy - prose poetry/novel-in-verse, a style I usually adore. But I felt that an unconventional format story about the coming-of-age of a primal force/god/demon/supernatural creature (It's hard to pin down what he actually is...something like a cross between a Greek-style deity, a fire spirit, and a dragon, maybe. His name is Geryon, and he's an actual figure from myth.) should have been much more engaging than this was. It had such potential, and there are some high-profile blurbs of well-respected authors gushing about the edginess and power of the writing...but I didn't feel that at all. I found the story a sometimes-interesting, could-have-been great, angst-ridden diary of a self-centered, mopey kid obsessed with a (once- and casually-requited) same-sex romantic inclination towards the ancient world's apparent answer to James Dean (Herakles/Hercules) who just wants to be friends with occasional benefits and occasional epic battles. Yeah, I was confused, too.

I didn't hate it, but I didn't really enjoy it, either. I wanted "edgier", more challenging ideas, more depth, and more to think about, but what I got was soap opera (starring the world's oldest emo and a shallow rebel/loner stereotype.) Meh.


message 39: by Susan (new)

Susan | 3441 comments Mod
The Night Tourist and Twilight Prisoner are the two books (so far) in a series by Katherine Marsh. Each refers to some aspects of the Greek myths, and Charon & Cerbus have essential roles in each one.

My reviews are here and here.


message 40: by Susan (new)

Susan | 3441 comments Mod
I posted a quote from Trickster early on, and then forgot to post my review when I finished it. I didn't enjoy the later tales as much as the earlier ones, but I'd still recommend it.

My review here .


message 41: by Susan (new)

Susan | 3441 comments Mod
My most recent fun book on this shelf is Tattoo. You might say it does for girls and Celtic mythology what Percy Jackson does for boys and Roman mythology. Nevertheless, if you enjoy young adult fiction and liked PJ, you should try it. I actually like it better than PJ, and will read the others in this series. With PJ, I stopped after the first one.

My review here .


message 42: by Vivian (new)

Vivian (_vivian) | 192 comments Still enjoying my YAs. Added Tattoo to the TBR. Thanks for the review Susan. Also planning on reading Percy Jackson, so it'll be interesting to see which I like better :)


message 43: by Lynne (new)

Lynne (lmsindel) Vivian wrote: "Still enjoying my YAs. Added Tattoo to the TBR. Thanks for the review Susan. Also planning on reading Percy Jackson, so it'll be interesting to see which I like better :)"

Great review. I loved all the PJ books so I think I will give these a try.


message 44: by Susan (new)

Susan | 3441 comments Mod
I really enjoyed The Penelopiad, which I would never have even looked at if it hadn't been on this month's shelf. My review here .


message 45: by Tina (new)

Tina | 232 comments I finished up Helen of Troy by Margaret George tonight. Am I ever glad that I read this book! It's made me want to read so much more mythology (isn't it great when a book whets your appetite for more?). Margaret George did a fantastic job of writing about Helen, a main character whom I didn't know if I loved, pitied, or was disgusted by. While the battle of Troy did drag on a bit in the middle, overall, I was so engaged in the book, it went by very quickly. I gave it **** stars.


message 46: by Dee (new)

Dee (austhokie) | 2569 comments I finished up Marked the other day - I didn't realize it was on the mythology shelf until I was looking at the ones it had been shelved under, since only 3 people had shelved it there - it was a romance based on the argonauts from Jason and the Argonauts - the main character in this one is a descendant from Hercules. Had to admit, I really enjoyed it, there were some overall weaknesses, but since it was the first in the series, that is usually expected (at least for me). I'll def. be reading more in the future. I loved the cameo's by the various gods (Hades, Perseophone, the Fates)


Lyn (Readinghearts) (lsmeadows) | 2814 comments Mod
The Hunter's Moon by O.R. Melling

This book just jumped off the shelf at the library at me. The premise sounded interesting, two girls who go looking for the world of Faerie in Ireland. Although the first chapter or so was a little strange, I ended up really liking it. A great adventure story and filled with a lot of great Irish folklore and legends. I am planning to read more of this author's books that center around Irish legends.

I have to say, this YA fantasy books really surprised me. I'm giving it 3.5 stars, mostly because of all the Irish mythology, folklore, and legends in it.


message 48: by Amy (last edited Apr 03, 2011 09:17PM) (new)

Amy | 2140 comments I read these four mythology books in March:

Cupid: A Tale of Love and Desire and give it 3 stars. It was geared toward a younger audience and read somewhat like a fairy tale.

Ceres: Celestial Legend, Volume 1: Aya and give it 2 stars. It was a manga, which I'm finding is not my favorite style. The illustrations were really good, but the story was just okay. It is the first in a series, but I didn't like it enough to read the remainder.

The Last Unicorn got 2 1/2 stars. It was a bit slow and never really grabbed me.

Last, but not least, was Zombies vs. Unicorns which I gave 3 stars. It was an anthology where the stories alternated between zombies and unicorns. I discovered that I prefer zombies...;-) As is the case with most anthologies, some stories were better than others, but nothing blew me away.

I love this group more and more each month. I have discovered so many different types of books that I never would have read otherwise. On to medieval!


message 49: by BJ Rose (new)

BJ Rose (bjrose) | 234 comments Read in March but forgot to post:
Valley of Silence , which is the 3rd book in a mythology trilogy by Nora Roberts. In this series, the goddess Morrigan gathers together a wizard, a witch, a female warrior, a shapeshifter, a queen, & a vampire to fight Lilith & her horde on the feast of Samhain.

I mention Morrigan because I just finished The Alchemyst, which has Morrigan fighting with the dark forces.


message 50: by Luann (new)

Luann (azbookgal) | 1006 comments I finally finished one mythology book for March - just a few days late! :) Here is my review of The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan:

I'm not going to write much about this. I feel like I'm one of the last to read this - of those who are interested in reading this type of YA fantasy/adventure series. Also, I'm just not on board with this series as much as many are. I enjoy reading it, but I don't love, love it. I do like how this series has inspired an interest in Greek mythology in some of my library students, though! I'll definitely get to the fifth in the series, The Last Olympian, one of these days, hopefully soon. But it just isn't one of those must-read-and-finish-as-soon-as-possible series for me. Not sure why. 3.5 stars


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