Mythic Fiction discussion

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Book Themes > Original Mythical Creatures

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message 1: by Alice (new)

Alice (cimmerian) What do you think are good books with mythical creatures featured in them which aren't the usual ones like vampires, werewolves, faeries, angels, etc? I mean creatures which aren't used that often.


message 2: by Sls (new)

Sls (sls13) | 3 comments The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break


message 3: by Jalilah (new)

Jalilah The premise for many of Charles De Lint’s books are that mythological beings like the “First People” or “Animal people” of many First Nations (Native Americans) legends are still alive today. Many have intermarried with humans and live along side them.
If you want a break from your usual Urban Fantasy characters; vampires, werewolves and witches, De Lint would be a refreshing change! He has a full array of unusual characters like the Numena, beings born out of paintings (Memory and Dream), a “shadow sister” who came to being out of the cast off character traits of her brother (Onion Girl) , and Saskia, a women born inside a computer (Sprits in the Wires). These are just a few examples. .


message 4: by Alice (new)

Alice (cimmerian) Wow Jalilah, that really sounds interesting! I'll definitly look him up!


message 5: by Jalilah (last edited May 31, 2012 07:04AM) (new)

Jalilah Charles De Lint’s Newford series is not really series in the sense that you absolutely have to read them in order; rather they are a series of books that take place in the same universe with many of the same characters. If you read them in the order you get more background history about the various characters but this is more important later on in the series. I would NOT start with The Onion Girl or Widdershins but you could start with Memory and Dream Someplace to Be Flying or his newer YA books take place in the Southwest The Painted Boy or Under My Skin


message 6: by Chris (new)

Chris (calmgrove) Recently read John Barrowman's Hollow Earth (co-written with his sister Carole) which is about the dangers from creatures featured in medieval bestiaries invading modern Scotland. It's the first of a series, so not that many beasties yet.


message 7: by Alice (new)

Alice (cimmerian) Are De Lint's books all short stories?

Hollow Earth sounds interesting too :) Thanks you guys!!


message 8: by Chris (new)

Chris (calmgrove) Alice wrote: "Hollow Earth sounds interesting too :) Thanks you guys!!"

John Barrowman appeared as Captain Jack in Doctor Who and in the spin-off Torchwood, so he's no stranger to scary creatures!


message 9: by Jalilah (new)

Jalilah Alice wrote: "Are De Lint's books all short stories?

Hollow Earth sounds interesting too :) Thanks you guys!!"



Oh no! The books I mentioned before are all novels. He has written a lot of short stories as well.


message 10: by Alice (new)

Alice (cimmerian) Ohh, I like novels better, so that's good to hear!! Thanks you.. I have so much to read now :)


message 11: by Jalilah (new)

Jalilah If you like the idea of the mythological “First People” or “Animal people” I'd start with:
Someplace to Be Flying you'll meet the Coyote trickster,The Crow Girls,Raven and many other cool characters!


message 12: by Evilynn (new)

Evilynn | 6 comments I actually started reading Charles DeLint with Widdershins (it was a gift, I probably would've read The Onion Girl first, at least), and the sky hasn't fallen yet. ;) As long as you're aware there's a whole story framework around them I think it worked out reasonably well.


message 13: by Brenda (new)

Brenda Clough (brendaclough) | 56 comments Mmm. I wrote a short story about a cyclops. You know, the ones who were defeated by Odysseus. I had him fight Charles, Prince of Wales.


message 14: by Alice (new)

Alice (cimmerian) Brenda wrote: "Mmm. I wrote a short story about a cyclops. You know, the ones who were defeated by Odysseus. I had him fight Charles, Prince of Wales."

Lol! That sounds really funny :P


message 15: by Rora (new)

Rora I recently read a book based on kelpies...The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater.


message 16: by Brenda (new)

Brenda Clough (brendaclough) | 56 comments Alice, it's titled "To Serve A Prince" and appears here:
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13...


message 17: by Alice (new)

Alice (cimmerian) Thanks a lot to you all for the titles :)


message 18: by Carolyn (new)

Carolyn (seeford) I would recommend a book by Mercedes Lackey called Firebird, based around a Phoenix.

A classic is The Last Unicorn, by Peter Beagle.


message 19: by Janet (new)

Janet | 9 comments I'd recommend Seanan McGuire's Toby Daye series, starting with Rosemary and Rue - it has some classic mythological character types (elves), some less common ones (kitsune, kelpies, redcaps), and some made up ones that are interesting or cute (rose goblins!). McGuire's Discount Armageddonhas an even broader range of mythological characters and critters - it's funnier, and more comic-book-y. She calls it "a kick in the head". :) If you're in the mood for mythology for MG/YA readers I loved Delia Sherman's Changelingand The Magic Mirror of the Mermaid Queen.

I also liked De Lint such as(Greenmantle, Mercedes Lackey's Firebird and her Heirs of Alexandria series with Flint and Freer starting with The Shadow of the Lion, which has unusual undines and pagan mythological creatures in a historical fantasy setting.


message 20: by Brenda (new)

Brenda Clough (brendaclough) | 56 comments Oh, and that reminds me: THE MOON AND THE SUN, by Vonda McIntyre. You want undines, you got them.


message 21: by Rora (new)

Rora One of my favorite books is about the kitsune...The Fox Woman by Kij Johnson.


message 22: by Carolyn (new)

Carolyn (seeford) Another book that's a favorite of mine is In Great Waters - merpeople in an alternate history setting.


message 23: by Serena (last edited Jan 18, 2013 07:36AM) (new)

Serena | 19 comments I sort of loved Urban Shaman (Walker Papers, #1) by C.E. Murphy she has other series that are very good too.


message 24: by Jalilah (new)

Jalilah Rena (Greeksays) wrote: "I sort of loved Urban Shaman (Walker Papers, #1) by C.E. Murphy she has other series that are very good too."

The librarian just recommended that series to me because I am interested in First Nations/Native American Themes. She knew I like the Jane Yellowrock series. Have you read it? The first one is:
Skinwalker (Jane Yellowrock, #1) by Faith Hunter


message 25: by Serena (new)

Serena | 19 comments Jalilah wrote: "The librarian just recommended that series to me because I am interested in First Nations/Native American Themes. She knew I like the Jane Yellowrock series. Have you read it? The first one is:
Skinwalker (Jane Yellowrock, #1) "


No I can't say I've read that, looks promising though, thank you for sharing. :)


message 26: by Gene (new)

Gene Phillips | 18 comments I've been trying to think of a way to adapt the concept of the Gorgons to paranormal romance. Still working on that one.


message 27: by Serena (new)

Serena | 19 comments Sweet Venom (Medusa Girls, #1) by Tera Lynn Childs Sweet Shadows (Medusa Girls, #2) by Tera Lynn Childs Sweet Legacy (Medusa Girls, #3) by Tera Lynn Childs

Tera Lynn Childs did something interesting with the Medusa myth, or at least it certainly looking like it. Have to admit I've not read it.


message 28: by Ann (last edited Feb 25, 2014 08:59AM) (new)

Ann (annhunter) | 4 comments I've got a gryphon in my book The Subtle Beauty, as well as barghests and donestres.

Skyfire by J. Owen has a cool gryphon too.

Gryphons are definitely underepresented in literature! :D


message 29: by Gene (new)

Gene Phillips | 18 comments Another minotaur is one of the stars of Thomas Burnett Swann's DAY OF THE MINOTAUR. I feel sure that some of his other works feature myth-creatures, though I don't know how easy they are to find.


message 30: by Michele (last edited Feb 26, 2014 02:07PM) (new)

Michele Robert Holdstock's Mythago Wood is an interesting take on mythic archetypes. Jo Walton's Tooth and Claw has dragons, but in a highly unusual way.


message 31: by Hannah (new)

Hannah Spencer | 7 comments Mark Chadbourn uses loads in his books. I have used Pan/ Cernunnos, the Duergars (very malicious hill Faerie) and the Knockers (faerie of tin mines) to popular result


message 32: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Porter (trolltails) | 5 comments I think it's fun to read about new creatures, combinations of creatures, and if it's about the well known creatures, put a new twist on it.

I have always had an interest in the untold story.


message 33: by Serena (new)

Serena | 19 comments Jalilah wrote: "Rena (Greeksays) wrote: "I sort of loved Urban Shaman (Walker Papers, #1) by C.E. Murphy she has other series that are very good too."

The librarian just recommended that series to me because I am interested in First Nations/Native American Themes. She knew I like the Jane Yellowrock series. Have you read it? The first one is:"


No, I haven't but the two authors have done a crossover together : Easy Pickings


message 34: by Ian (new)

Ian Cumpstey | 6 comments The Golden Fleece by Robert Graves has an interesting approach. It is a telling of the Argonaut story, set in the proper setting, in Ancient Greece, with the religious beliefs and cults and so on. But there is nothing actually supernatural in there. Couple of examples: the centaurs are a cult of wild men living out on mount Pelion, and the horse is the sacred animal of this cult, so they are called horse-men, and they grow their hair long like a horse's mane. (Many people belong to one animal cult or another.) And the harpies visiting the blind king don't exist outside his imagination. His relatives are leaving food with open windows in his hall. He hears the flapping of birds wings and smells the old decaying food, and they tell him about the harpy creatures.
I like that.


message 35: by Hannah (new)

Hannah Spencer | 7 comments Myths are often based on a reality which has been embellished over the centuries.
With a lot of these things it's impossible to know if they really exist outside your own mind. I like stories where the author leaves an air of uncertainty as to their true nature


message 36: by Brenda (new)

Brenda Clough (brendaclough) | 56 comments I liked the way in THE LAST UNICORN the author juggled creatures we sort of have an image for (the unicorn) with invented ones (the Bull).


message 37: by Valkyrie (new)

Valkyrie | 13 comments The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flammel series has an impressive range of mythical creatures. Some are used well known like the minotaur, but there are creatures like wendigo and Golems that are used.


message 38: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Porter (trolltails) | 5 comments I love the Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flammel series.


message 39: by Mary (new)

Mary Catelli | 332 comments The 13 Clocks has the Golux -- the only Golux in the world and not a mere device-- and, of course, the Todal.

Plus of course the -- well --


Something very much like nothing anyone had ever seen before came trotting down the stairs and crossed the room.
  "What is that?" the Duke asked, palely.
  "I don't know what it is," said Hark, "but it's the only one there ever was."



message 40: by Mary (new)

Mary Catelli | 332 comments Castle Hangnail by Ursula Vernon features two minotaurs.


message 41: by John (new)

John Triptych | 8 comments Ive used the tzitzimitl, wendigos, fomorians and a whole bunch in my books so far. ;)


message 42: by Mary (new)

Mary Catelli | 332 comments Well, I've used a gryphon. Am working on a story with dove maidens.


message 43: by Maureen (new)

Maureen Burton-Bukhari (maureenlb) | 3 comments I am using mythical creatures and people in my series, "The Sanctuary Series". The first book, "The Villa" makes use of gorgons, the graeae ladies, Achelous, the steer with a man body and broken horn...(is he a minotaur?) and the sirens of the sea. They live among us and we don't find that odd but find it a rare occurrance to run into them.


message 44: by Hannah (new)

Hannah Spencer | 7 comments I use a lot of beings from British folklore and mythology - gods, Fomorii, faerie, Duergars, knockers (no not that sort!) I try for the more unusual ones that haven't been done a hundred times before.


message 45: by Valkyrie (new)

Valkyrie | 13 comments Hannah wrote: "I use a lot of beings from British folklore and mythology - gods, Fomorii, faerie, Duergars, knockers (no not that sort!) I try for the more unusual ones that haven't been done a hundred times before."

The Bean Sidhe are good ones. I would also suggest the Tuatha Duanaan.


message 46: by Mary (new)

Mary Catelli | 332 comments I will observe that playing mix-and-match with original mythic creatures from different folklores/myths can be hard to pull off. Even a single folklore can have wild inconsistency. Trying to fuse two or more together is really hard to pull off.


message 47: by Hannah (new)

Hannah Spencer | 7 comments Valkyrie wrote: "Hannah wrote: "I use a lot of beings from British folklore and mythology - gods, Fomorii, faerie, Duergars, knockers (no not that sort!) I try for the more unusual ones that haven't been done a hun..."

Good ideas, thank you!


message 48: by Deborah (new)

Deborah Wilbrink (memoirlady) | 4 comments I can recommend Loralei's Lyric by D. B. Seiders which has a river nymph from Europe visiting the Cumberland and Music City (Nashville). She has sirenic qualities and the tale is full of drama and romance. First in a series.Lorelei's Lyric I loved this - Sieders' "Elementals" are very original.


message 49: by Janice (JG) (new)

Janice (JG) | 1 comments Hello. This is my first post to this group. I've taken on mythology as my reading theme for the next year or two (or however long it takes). I'm interested in the myths of all cultures and all times. I happily read Circe a few weeks ago, and now I'm just as eager to read fictionalized mythical stories as well as non-fiction studies.

Currently, I'm looking for horse myths, fiction or non-fiction. I understand there have been many horse cultures around the world since horses became their current size, and maybe there are even earlier stories.


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