Monday, March 26, 2007

Once Upon a Time 2007 Challenge

I most likely will not be online for the next several months in hopes of staying on top of all these reading challenges I seem to have gotten myself involved in (who am I kidding?). As much as I should avoid joining in another one at all costs (after all, I do have a full-time job to attend to and a husband and animals that want to share my attention on occasion), I seem to have gotten myself tangled in the web of a spell--this one cast by Carl V. of Stainless Steel Droppings. What is the expression about the eyes being bigger than the appetite?

Once Upon a Time…all the great ones begin that way, don’t they? At least in our recollection? Hearkening back to childhood, those four words represent the foundation upon which story is built. In that same way, these four types of story, Mythology, Folklore, Fairytale, and Fantasy, form the very foundation of storytelling itself. It is from the roots of these genres that our latest challenge grows.

Carl offers four quests to participants (there is the option to participate in more than one if desired):

Quest One: Read at least 5 books from any of the 4 genres.
Quest Two: Read at least one book from each of the four genres of story-Mythology, Folklore, Fairytale, and Fantasy.
Quest Three: Read at least one book from each of the four genres of story, and finish up the challenge with a June reading of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Quest Four: Read at least one book from the four genres.

For further details about the challenge, please visit Stainless Steel Droppings.

After careful consideration and discussion with Anjin over what books fit into which categories, I decided to take on Quest Two.

Fairytale - The Fire Rose by Mercedes Lackey [read 06/09/2007]
Fantasy - A Wizard of the Earthsea by Ursula Le Guin [read 04/07/2007]
Folklore - Mythago Wood by Robert Holdstock [read 05/04/2007]
Mythology - American Gods by Neil Gaiman [read 04/21/2007]

Let the adventure begin!


  1. Very cool list!! I'm trying to decide what to read. I have The Fire Rose here...maybe I'll add it to my list too.

    Yeah American Gods!

  2. Thanks, Stephanie! It's been a while since I read a Mercedes Lackey book, and so I thought it was about time. :-) American Gods will be my first Neil Gaiman book. I'm really looking forward to reading it.

  3. Sounds fun! But I don't think I'm able to meet the challenge...sigh. Happy reading. :)

  4. Never heard of Mythago Wood, but I followed the link and have decided to put it on my list. Sounds great! Can't wait for your review.

  5. I think you will enjoy "American Gods". Gaimon is a writer who really respects the intelligence of his audience.

  6. Good to see you are doing the challenge too! This is going to be fun. I haven't heard of any of the books you are reading but no surprise there as I don't read Fantasy typically. Can't wait to hear your rviews on them as the challenges goes on!

  7. I really enjoyed American Gods. Earthsea Trilogy was good and while I don't know if I read that particular book by Mercedes Lackey, she's got a great style. (I went through a phase of her books after meeting her at a con my brother dragged me to.)

    Hmm. Mythago Wood? Sounds intriguing....

    That Carl! He has the best challenges. I cannot WAIT for tax season to be over so I can catch up on blogs, much less books!

  8. I think if I spent less time online I would get more reading done, though I always feel behind in my blog reading! Someone also recommended Mythago Wood to me, too. I look forward to hearing what you think about it!

  9. Melody - I am looking forward to it. I really enjoy reading fantasy but haven't been doing able to do much of it lately.

    Jenclair - A long time friend of mine in Finland recommended Robert Holdstock to me years ago, and I finally decided to give him a try (it's been on my TBR shelf long enough! Haha).

    Iliana - I'm so excited about this challenge! My husband introduced me to fantasy-got me hooked really--and I'm grateful to him for that.

    Carrie K - I've been wanting to read a Neil Gaiman book for awhile now and American Gods seemed to fit the bill for this one. I considered reading Stardust first because it seems to be among his most recommended books. I have a feeling I'll get to it in good time though.

    I went through a Mercedes Lackey phase in college--thanks to my husband (then boyfriend). One of the best gifts he ever gave me was several books in her Valdemar series for my birthday one year--mostly his own books. You have to know that he doesn't give up his books easily and so it was a very special gift coming from him at that time. :-)

    Danielle - Yes, I know what you mean! Every night I tell myself that tomorrow I'll spend more time reading and cut back on my computer time, but then I start worrying about getting behind on blogs.

  10. Kookiejar - I have heard that about Gaiman and am looking forward to giving him a try. I am looking forward to American Gods. :-)

  11. I'm definitely going to join in too but I can't decide which Quest to do and I've no idea which books to do...

  12. Also, you aren't serious about not being online for the next couple of months...are you? If so I will miss you and I certainly understand the idea!!!

  13. Ooh, a new Gaiman reader! Look forward to hearing what you think of American Gods, it is a favourite of mine.

    I'm also reading Earthsea for the challenge - one of my revisits, it has been a long time...

  14. I have never read Earthsea but my son, the fantasy fanatic, loves it. I will get around to it one of these days, I am sure.

    Hope you enjoy your choices!

  15. Hi, Heather! I was only kidding, although I probably will try and cut back a little so I have more time to read. :-)

    I almost just went for the first quest, but for some reason I decided to try for the 2nd. Maybe I figured one less book might make me feel better about overcommitting myself. Haha

    Quixotic - A person can only resist the pull of Gaiman for so long. Or so one of my friends says. I have an inkling that I'll really enjoy his books.

    I look forward to reading your thoughts on Earthsea. I've heard great things about it.

    Amy - My husband is a bit of a fantasy fantatic too and he recommended Earthsea to me. I admit I was looking for something on the short side when I chose that one, but I've been wanting to read it for awhile now.

  16. Mythago Woods is wonderful, read it 5 or 6 years ago. Love the LeGuin books (they're a trilogy--must read all 3!) i have been reading mysteries all year, so far...must read a fantasy or 2. I'm going to see The Canterbury Tales at the end of April, so i must re-read them...been a looong time

  17. Hi, Chris! Ooo! You've read Mythago Wood! I am glad you liked it. My husband assured me that the first book in Earthsea was enough of a stand alone that I won't be kicking him for recommending it when we don't own the other two in the trilogy yet. :-) I really hate it when that happens.

    I never did read all of The Canterbury Tales, just bits and pieces.

  18. I'm reading a Holdstock and a Gaiman for this challenge too, although different titles. Look forward to seeing what you think of them

  19. Your choices sound good too. I've been wanting to read Stardust for awhile but haven't managed to get around to it. I say that about a lot of books, I suppose. The hazard of having a huge TBR collection.

  20. American Gods, yay! One of my favorite books. Can't wait to see what you think of it1

  21. Interesting list of books. And I love that you have an alternate list.

  22. Chris - I just finished American Gods and I really enjoyed it.

    Pat - Thanks. I am looking forward to reading them all!


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