Fairytale, Myths & Legends Re-Tellings

Fairytale, myths and legends retellings

Fairytale, Myths & Legends Re-Tellings

I love a good re-telling novel and I have quite a lot of them. The ones I read most often are Greek myth retellings and I have a ton of those on my shelf.

I love them so much my old boss gave me a book of Greek Myths from Folio Society as my leaving present – not quite a ‘retelling’ but I love that book so I’m sharing it!

Anyway, here are some of my recommended fairy telling and legend re-tellings.

The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood

This is a fairly short retelling of the Odyssey from his wife Penelope’s perspective. Set between her life on earth and her life in hell, this is a political yet easy-read Greek myth retelling.

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige

Okay, so technically this is neither fairytale or legend, but it’s a classic and is basically a fairytale so I’m including it! I have that power. Anyway, Dorothy Must Die is a series by Danielle Paige in which Amy Gumm is transported to Oz in a tornado and is recruited by the Wicked Witches to kill Dorothy who has turned pure evil since she showed up several years beforehand. A light-hearted, yet dark, YA re-telling which starts off really well but doesn’t end great. Oh well, I still recommend reading it.

Athena’s Champion by David Hair & Cath Mayo

I’m biased about this book because I helped to market and publicise it but I truly loved it! This is the first in a Greek Mythology series and it’s fantastic! Think a literary re-telling of Odysseus early years. Loved it!

Cinder by Marissa Myer

I read this so long ago but I did enjoy it. I’m not a massive series fan so I never carried on with the Lunar Chronicles but this book was good and clever. Cinderella is bionic and she is treated unfairly because of that, but she has a secret that she must keep quiet to keep her life and save those around her. Worth re-reading… maybe?

Kissing the Witch by Emma Donoghue

This is a collection of short stories that focus on re-telling fairytales. I wasn’t enamoured with this book but it’s still a good collection of stories for fairytale fans.

Circe by Madeline Miller

Madeline Miller is the mistress of greek myth re-tellings. She’s taken a lesser known character in the Greek Mythology and mapped out her entire life and it’s wonderful. Circe was the first witch of the Greek world and kept herself to herself. This makes a goddess incredibly human. Throughly enjoyable, with an amazing writing style.

Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

This is one of my favourite books of 2018 and I loved it slightly more than Circe. I read this whilst on holiday and it was one of my favourite portions of that holiday. An LGBT+ greek mythology re-telling, re-telling the story of Achilles and Patroclus. Loved it!

Some other books I’ll include that I haven’t read but heard good things about

  • The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas
  • Gingerbread by Helen Oyeyemi
  • Bitter Greens by Kate Forsyth
  • The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker
  • A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes
  • For the Most Beautiful by Emily Hauser
  • House of Names by Colm Toibin
  • The King Must Die by Mary Renault

I have quite a few of the above on my bookshelf and I can’t wait to get to them! Let me know if you have any fairytale or myth retellings on your to-be-read list.

Happy reading!

Love Ellie x

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One comment on “Fairytale, Myths & Legends Re-Tellings

  1. I read bits of The Bloody Chamber for an essay at University, and it was good but – as it typical for Carter – quite dark and sexual. I recommend checking out New World Fairy Tales by Cassandra Parkin, I read it the other week and it was a collection of adaptations of the Grimms’ tales but as if they were American urban myths. It was a really good, quite light read.

    I do love a retelling though – I haven’t read any Sarah J Maas yet but I’ve heard her stuff is excellent. Ella Enchanted is probably my favourite retelling of Cinderella, which I first read at about 14, but I’ve adored it ever since.

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