Wednesday, March 17, 2010

One Night Stand: Once Upon a Time

Fantasy is one of my favorite types of books. Unfortunately, I seem to read less and less of them these days, which is such a shame. I have gone back and forth about whether or not to actually join in this year's Once Upon a Time Challenge, and finally decided to stick to my original plan. So, while this challenge is relegated to the One Night Stand treatment, it is no less special to me.

Carl V's challenge has opened up a world of fantasy to readers, encouraging readers new to the genre to give it a try while challenging existing fantasy readers to explore the genre further. His love for all things fantastical shines through on his blog, Stainless Steel Droppings.

The Once Upon a Time Challenge IV runs from March 21st through June 20th, in concurrence with the spring season. It seems a perfect time to delve into fantasy.

Challenge Options:
(Note: There are four categories: Fantasy, Fairy Tales, Folklore and Mythology
  • The Journey - Read at least one book within one of the four categories (fantasy, folklore, mythology, fairy tales).
  • Quest the First - Read 5 books that fit somewhere within the four categories (all five can be in one category, or spread out among them all--it's your choice!)
  • Quest the Second - Read at least one book for each category.
  • Quest the Third - Complete Quests the First and Second and follow it up by reading Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream (or watching one of the movie versions).
  • Quest the Fourth - Read two nonfiction books or collection of essays that pertain to one or more of the categories.
  • Short Story Weekends - Read one or more short stories related to the genre categories during the weekend.
Readers may participate in as many or as few of the quests as they like. The goal is to have fun. Be sure and visit Carl V at Stainless Steel Droppings for more information or check out the challenge blog.

I could join the Journey portion of the challenge and most likely could fit in one book, but after much thought and consideration of how much I already have on my plate and don't want to be hampered by yet another self-imposed deadline, a one night stand will have to do. This gives me the option to read one of the books from my list whenever I feel like it, regardless of the challenge's time frame. Can't beat that!

So, for the fun of it, I went through my TBR shelves looking for books that might fall into the Quest the Second, which is to read one book from each of the four genre categories: fantasy, fairy tales, folklore and mythology. Half the battle is putting the novels into the categories! I have shelves and shelves of novels that easily fall into the fantasy category. It was harder to separate out the rest.

The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie
Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison

Fairy Tale:
The Neverending Story by Michael Ende
Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr

Midnight Never Come by Marie Brennan
Silver Wolf by Alice Borchardt

Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman
The Fall of Atlantis by Marion Zimmer Bradley

  • Have you read any of the books I've listed? Any I absolutely must read right now?
  • What books have you read or want to read that might fit into this challenge?

Note: Remember, I am not actually joining the challenge, just having a little One Night Stand.

© 2010, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved.
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  1. I will not be of any help to you with this one as I have not read any of the books. I do have my eye on Wicked Lovely though.

  2. I thoroughly enjoyed the RIP challenge last fall, and I would love to take part in this one as well, but I just don't have the time. I need to develop a love of fantasy books

  3. I wish I could do this challenge this year but I'm staying away from any more even without the commitment. lol. I love the button this year though - it's great.

  4. I really enjoy your One Night Stands, Wendy. I haven't read any of the books on your list, but I do intend to read Anansi Boys for my Blogging Authors Reading Project this year.

  5. Thanks for reminding me about The Neverending Story...I love that book!

  6. I've read The Neverending Story (need to read it again as it's been too long!), Wicked Lovely (very enjoyable) and Anansi Boys (one of my favourites). Enjoy all your picks, Wendy! I'm very much looking forward to making my own list this weekend.

  7. I just discovered (and read) your "one night stand" post. You. Are. Brilliant :o)

    I haven't read any of the books you listed, but I have Anansi Boys in one of my piles and want to read it in the not too distant future. I read American Gods and just adored it.

    I'm currently reading Spindle's End by Robin McKinley which would fall in the Fairy Tale category. Am loving it. Maybe I can "cheat" and write up a review for it as part of the Challenge :o)

  8. The only one of those books I have read was The Blade Itself which I liked but I found to be quite dark fantasy. I have thought about requesting the sequel but haven't managed to do so yet.

  9. Anansi Boys is fantastic, and Wicked Lovely is very good, too. :)

  10. I really enjoyed "Midnight Never Come" by Marie Brennan, as well as its followup (though I can't remember that title). WOuldn't call it folklore though - more paranormal adventure/romance, based on English folklore. Very well done, though. Great escapist fun! In fact, I may hae to look to see if she's done anymore....

  11. Nise - I've been wanting to read Wicked Lovely for quite some time now. I've heard such great things about it.

    Molly - I don't have the time either. Oh well. A one night stand is better than nothing. :-)

    Dar - I came really close to doing this one but, like you, decided to stay away from any more challenges.

    Florinda - I enjoyed American Gods quite a bit so figure I should try and get to Anansi Boys one of these days.

    Kathleen - I loved the movie growing up just never got around to reading the book. One of these days!

  12. Nymeth - I look forward to seeing what you choose to read for this challenge, Nymeth. Eventually I'll get around to reading all the books on the list--just not likely anytime soon.

    Terri - Ah, thanks, Terri! It feels a bit like cheating, but these one night stands satisfies my challenge craving.

    I think I have a Robin McKinley book on my shelf to read. I am drawing a blank as to which one. I've heard good things about her books. I look forward to reading your thoughts on Spindle's End.

    Marg - Ooo, dark fantasy! I like the sound of that. :-)

    Carrie - I'm glad you enjoyed both Anansi Boys and Wicked Lovely. I'm looking forward to reading them.

    Clea - There are probably other titles on there that are stretches in their categories. :-) I'm afraid my TBR shelves aren't quite as easy to pigeonhole into the challenge's categories. I'll take "based on English folklore". Close enough. :-)

    I am glad you enjoyed Midnight Never Come. It does sound good. I have an earlier book of hers as well, Doppelganger, I think.

  13. Haven't read any of the ones listed and am still pondering what I might read for this challenge. Since I love fantasy, it is one of my favorite challenges!

  14. I have some of the books you listed here, Wendy. Have fun with the challenge!

  15. Jenclair - I can't wait to see what you decide to read for this challenge.

    Alice - I'm looking forward to eventually reading them all. I'm not actually doing the challenge this year, just having fun making the list. :-)


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