Review: Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman (UK edition)

Title: Norse Mythology
Author: Neil Gaiman
Genre: Mythology, Non-Fiction
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing (7th February 2017)

The Norse myths are woven into the fabric of our storytelling – from the novels of Tolkien to the worlds of comics and superheroes. They are also the inspiration for Neil Gaiman’s own award-winning, bestselling fiction.

Now Gaiman reaches back through time to the original source stories in an epic and electrifying retelling of the great Norse myths – thriling tales of dwarfs and frost giants, of treasures and magic, and of Asgard, home of the Gods: Odin the all-father, highest and oldest of the gods; his mighty son Thor, whose hammer, Mjollnir, was forged by dwarfs and makes the mountain giants tremble; Loki, wily and handsome, reliably unreliable in his lusts; and Freya, more beautiful than the sun or the moon, who gives short shrift to the gods, giants and ogres who seek to control her.

Gaiman’s gods are thoroughly alive on the page – irascible, visceral, playful, passionate – as he leads us from the beginning of everything to Ragnarok, the inescapable final downfall of the gods . . .

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ (3 stars)

NORSE MYTHOLOGY by Neil Gaiman is, I think, more non-fiction than it is fiction. It is a collection of surviving Norse myths retold to us by the charming Gaiman. This collection contains an introduction, outlining why Gaiman chose to write this book, a glossary and tells sixteen Norse myths. These myths begin with the Norse creation story, and conclude with the Norse take on the end of the world. The fourteen stories in between paint a picture of the Norse gods; of Odin and his son Thor, and of Loki Lie-Smith who in this version of the stories is Odin’s blood brother and Thor’s friend.

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Review: Mortal Gods by Kendare Blake

Mortal Gods by Kendare Blake

Title: Mortal Gods (The Goddess War, 2)
Author: Kendare Blake
Mythology, Romance, Young Adult
Publisher: Tor Teen (8th September 2015)

ARES, GOD OF WAR, is leading the other dying gods into battle. Which is just fine with Athena. She’s ready to wage a war of her own, and she’s never liked him anyway. If Athena is lucky, the winning gods will have their immortality restored. If not, at least she’ll have killed a bloody lot of them, and she and Hermes can die in peace.

Cassandra Weaver is a weapon of fate. The girl who kills gods. But all she wants is for the god she loved and lost to return to life. If she can’t have that, then the other gods will burn, starting with his murderer, Aphrodite.

The alliance between Cassandra and Athena is fragile. Cassandra suspects Athena lacks the will to truly kill her own family. And Athena fears that Cassandra’s hate will get them all killed.

The war takes them across the globe, searching for lost gods, old enemies, and Achilles, the greatest warrior the world has ever seen. As the struggle escalates, Athena and Cassandra must find a way to work together. Because if they can’t, fates far worse than death await.

Rating: **** (4 stars)

MORTAL GODS by Kendare Blake is the second book in The Goddess War trilogy. The book continues the stories of Cassandra and Athena from ANTIGODDESS (review). The old Greek gods are slowly dying; fading ignobly in agony. Cassandra and Athena face the oncoming battles with a fragile alliance stretched between them. And Cassandra is the girl who kills gods.

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Review: My Neighbor Totoro The Novel

My Neighbor Totoro: The Novel

Title: My Neighbor Totoro The Novel
Author: Tsugiko Kubo
Illustrator and Original Concept: Hayao Miyazaki
Translator: Jim Hubbert
Genre: Fantasy, Mythology, Young Adult
Publisher: Viz Media (7th November 2013)

The beloved animation classic by legendary Studio Ghibli director Hayao Miyazaki, My Neighbor Totoro, is now a novel. This edition features original illustrations by Miyazaki himself, accompanying a story by veteran children’s author Tsugiko Kubo.

Eleven-year-old Satsuki and her sassy little sister Mei have moved to the country to be closer to their ailing mother. Soon, in the woods behind the spooky old house, Satsuki and Mei discover a forest spirit named Totoro. When Mei goes missing, it’s up to Satsuki to find her sister, and she’ll need help from some new, and magical, friends.

Rating: *** (3 stars)

MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO THE NOVEL by Tsugiko Kubo is literally what it says it is: the novel version of Hayao Miyazaki’s film of the same name. The book tells the story of eleven-year-old Satsuki and her four-year-old sister Mei. The sisters move with their father to the country so they can be closer to their mother, who is ill and resides in Shichikokuyama Hospital.

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Review: Odin’s Ravens by K. L. Armstrong and M. A. Marr

Odin’s Ravens by K. L. Armstrong & M. A. Marr

Title: Odin’s Ravens (The Blackwell Pages, 2)
Authors: K. L. Armstrong & M. A. Marr
Genre: Fantasy, Middle Grade, Mythology
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company (13th May 2014)

Seven kids, Thor’s hammer, and a whole lot of Valkyries are the only things that standing against the end of the world.

When thirteen-year-olds Matt Thorsen and Fen and Laurie Brekke, modern-day descendants of Thor and Loki, discovered they were fated to take the places of the Norse gods in an epic battle against the apocalypse, they thought they knew how things would play out. Gather the other descendants standing in for the gods, defeat a giant serpent, and save the world. No problem, right?

But the descendants’ journey grinds to a halt when their friend Baldwin is poisoned and Matt, Fen, and Laurie must travel to the Underworld in hopes of saving him. That’s only the first stop on their journey to reunite the challengers, find Thor’s hammer, and save humanity – a journey filled with enough tooth-and-nail battles and colossal monsters to make Matt and his friends legends in their own right.

Perfect for fans of ancient myths and filled with young heroes, monstrous beasts, and godly enemies, this fast-paced adventure is impossible to put down.

Rating: **** (4 stars)

ODIN’S RAVENS is the second instalment of K. L. Armstrong and M. A. Marr’s epic THE BLACKWELL PAGES. It continues the journey started by Matt Thorsen and Fen and Laurie Brekke in the first book in the series. After the events of LOKI’S WOLVES (review) Ragnarök looks closer than ever, but Matt and his friends are determined to stop the end of the world. Even if that means venturing into the Underworld to try to save Baldwin.

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Review: Pure by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Pure by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Title: Pure (Covenant, 2)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Genre: Mythology, Paranormal Romance, Young Adult
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (18th September 2014)

Enter the world of Covenant . . .

For Alexandria, being destined to become some kind of supernatural electrical outlet isn’t exactly awesome – especially when her ‘other half’ is everywhere she goes. Seth’s in her training room, outside her classes, and keeps showing up in her bedroom – so not cool. Their connection does have some benefits, like staving off memories of the tragic showdown with her mother, but it has no effect on what Alex feels for the forbidden, pure-blooded Aiden.

When daimons infiltrate the Covenants and attack students, the gods send furies – creatures determined to eradicate any threat to the Covenants and to the gods . . . and that includes Alex. If that and the hordes of aether-sucking monsters weren’t bad enough, a mysterious threat seems wiling to do anything to neutralize Seth, even if that means forcing Alex into servitude . . . or killing her.

When the gods are involved, some decisions can never, ever be undone.

Rating: **** (4 stars)

PURE is the second instalment of Jennifer L. Armentrout’s brilliant COVENANT series. Alexandria Andros’s story continues after the events of HALF-BLOOD (review), and the stakes are even higher. Alex is still reeling from the revelations, and choices she made in HALF-BLOOD but things are moving forward, and the threat to the Covenants – and therefore the pure-bloods – are rising. Events seem to be coming to a head, and Alex finds herself unable to escape them.

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Review: Half-Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Half-Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Title: Half-Blood (Covenant, 1)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Genre: Mythology, Paranormal Romance, Young Adult
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (14th August 2014)
Source: BookBridgr/Publisher

The Hematoi descended from the unions of gods and mortals, and the children of two Hematoi, pure-bloods, have godlike powers. Children of Hematoi and mortals – well, not so much. Half-bloods only have two options: become trained Sentinels who hunt and kill daimons or become servants in the homes of the pure.

Seventeen-year-old Alexandria would rather risk her life fighting than waste it scrubbing toilets, but she may end up slumming it anyway. There are several rules that students at the Covenant must follow. Alex has problems with them all, especially rule #1:

Relationships between pures and halfs are forbidden.

Unfortunately, she’s crushing hard on the totally hot pure-blood Aiden. But falling for Aiden isn’t her biggest problem – staying alive long enough to graduate the Covenant and become a Sentinel is. If she fails in her duty, she faces a future worse than death or slavery: being turned into a daimon, and being hunted by Aiden. And that would kind of suck.

And discover the very beginnings of Covenant in the prequel novella . . .


Rating: **** (4 stars)

HALF-BLOOD is the first book in Jennifer L. Armentrout’s COVENANT series which follows the story of Alexandria Andros, a half-blood who isn’t a big fan of rules but who is determined to do her duty. In a society where few things have changed since the gods walked among them, Alex is in a dangerous position as half-bloods have little power. This review is also going to cover the prequel novella DAIMON, as my copy of the book also including the novella.

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Review: Fantasy Lover by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Fantasy Lover by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Title: Fantasy Lover (Dark-Hunter #1)
Author: Sherrilyn Kenyon
Genre: Mythology, Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Piatkus (7th April 2011)

It might sound like a man’s ultimate fantasy – to live forever, destined to be the lover of thousands of women. But for Julian of Macedon, it’s a nightmare. Once a proud Spartan general, he’s now a love-slave, his essence magically held captive in a book for eternity. Then, one day, Grace Alexander summons Julian to fulfill her passionate dreams – and sees beyond the fantasy to the man himself.

Long years as a sex therapist have taken a lot of the fun out of the physical side of love for Grace. But the rules of the enchantment cannot be changed – Julian is hers for the next month. And as their time together slips by, Julian and Grace find more to share than sympathy and conversation and they begin to wonder if love might be within their grasp. That leaves only one question. Is love enough to break a 2,000-year-old curse?

In FANTASY LOVER, No. 1 New York Times bestselling author Sherrilyn Kenyon has penned a highly original novel inspired by Greek mythology that is utterly captivating and completely unputdownable.

Rating: *** (3 stars)

FANTASY LOVER is the first book in Sherrilyn Kenyon’s well-known DARK-HUNTER series. It tells the story of Grace Alexander, a sex therapist, whose friend thinks that her life should be about more than just her work. Grace’s friend convinces her to try the spell on the book containing Julian of Macedon.

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Review: Everneath by Brodi Ashton

Everneath by Brodi Ashton

Title: Everneath (Everneath #1)
Author: Brodi Ashton
Genre: Mythology, Paranormal Romance, Young Adult
Publisher: Simon Pulse (2nd August 2012)


Now she’s returned to her old life for another six months before the Everneath comes to claim her. Nikki longs to spend this precious time  reconnecting with the people she left behind – her family and friends and, most importantly, her boyfriend Jack, the one person she loves more than anything.

But there’s just one problem: Cole, the smouldering immortal who enticed her to the Everneath, has followed Nikki home, hoping to take her back to the Everneath . . . this time for ever.

Now Nikki only has six months for goodbyes she can’t find the words for, six months to  make the hardest decision of her life, six months to find redemption, if it exists . . .

Rating: *** (3 stars)

EVERNEATH by Brodi Ashton is the first book in the EVERNEATH TRILOGY It tells the story of Nikki Beckett a high school student who returns from the Everneath to find that six months have passed. She has just six months to say her goodbyes – to her family and friends – before she leaves permanently, when the Everneath claims her back.

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ICYMI Sunday 15- A Late Posting (Sorry)


ICYMI (In Case You Missed It) Sunday is a new meme that I am planning to feature on the blog every week. It is based on the Sunday Post  which is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, which was in turn inspired in part by the In My Mailbox meme. Basically, it allows me to let you know what went on the blog this week and anything interesting that is going on. It will also allow me to showcase any books I receive like the Showcase Sunday which is hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea.

This week has been a week of ups and downs. The weather has been nice and sunny, which I have liked from the relative safety of being inside but not really appreciated when I’ve ventured out in it. The hot weather has also left everyone a little grumpy, but hey-ho.

On the blog the last couple of weeks:

What else is going on?

  • YA Interrobang has a list of ‘Ten Stories Inspired by Greek Mythology” which you can find here. I think they including some great books in their list.
  • S. E. Smith wrote an article on The Daily Dot titled ‘The real story behind the war over YA novels’ which you can find here. Smith puts forward the argument that there might be a reason why so many adults read YA fiction – that it might, actually, speak to them in a way that adult literature fails to.
  • In an article on The Guardian YA author CJ Daugherty asks the question ‘Should boys read boys?’. Daugherty responds to those who argue that boys should just read books written by men here.
  • The Guardian reports that ‘Sherlock lives in the public domain, US court rules in case of the heckled brand’. You can find the report here.
  • Sharleen Spiteri the leader singer of Texas talks about her love of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD by Harper Lee here and Human Rights lawyer Shami Chakrabarti talks about her love for the book here.
  • The Guardian readers share some of their bookshop memories here.
  • J. K. Rowling responds to a tweet about Lord Voldemort’s sex life (or lack thereof) here.
  • Jess of Jess Hearts Books, Vicky of Books, Biscuits and Tea, Carly of Writing from the Tub and Michelle of Fluttering Butterflies are hosting the first YALC Readathon. It runs from the 23rd to the 29th June. You can find out more and sign-up here.
  • Author Julie Kagawa talks about her new book TALON (which comes out later this year) here.

So the discussion of adults reading young adult books seems to have devolved into boys should read books by men because girls have cooties, obviously. Not really sure what I think about the US court ruling re SHERLOCK. I think there’s potential for the ruling to be problematic regarding future copyright cases. J. K. Rowling’s response to the comment on Twitter was brilliant!! I would have signed-up to the YALC Readathon as I desperately need to, but I don’t have any copies of the books to hand – I need to rectify that soon-ish.

And finally, I do actually have one book this week. Mum was super awesome and picked this book up for me.

  • THE SILKWORM (A CORMORAN STRIKE NOVEL, 2) by Robert Galbraith [Goodreads]

I would love to hear what you’ve been up to this week and what books, if any, you’ve got so please leave me a link in the comments below.

Thanks for stopping by :D

Review: Awaken by Meg Cabot

Awaken by Meg Cabot (UK cover)

Title: Awaken (Abandon Trilogy #3)
Author: Meg Cabot
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Young Adult
Publisher: Macmillan (26th September 2013)


Seventeen-year-old Pierce Oliviera knew by accepting the love of John Hayden she’s be forced to live forever in one of the places she’d always dreaded the most: the Underworld. The sacrifice seemed worth it though, because it meant she could be with the boy she loves.

But now her happiness – and safety – are threatened, all because the Furies have discovered that John has broken one of their strictest rules: he revived a human soul.

If the balance between life and death isn’t fixed, both the Underworld and Pierce’s home back on Earth will be wiped away. But there’s only one way to restore order: someone has to die.


Rating: **** (4 stars)

AWAKEN is the final book in Meg Cabot’s ABANDON TRILOGY – a re-telling of the Greek myth of Persephone. Pierce Olivierea captured the attention of John Hayden, the lord of the Underworld. Eventually she fell in love with him, even though it meant living in the Underworld. Unfortunately, the balance between life and death is broken and Pierce and John have to find a way to fix it so they can have their happy ever after.

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