Lit Tuesday: Three Series on the Shelves

Yes, I’m still alive. Yes, I’m still a slacker. Yes, I’m still working on learning how to actually force myself to sit down and make time to write up things. As much as I’d feel like it’s cheating, maybe what I need to do is start writing my posts on Sunday or over the weekend. Obviously, life is getting in the way too much. Much like I am lamenting with my book club/writing group, adulting is hard and makes schedules hard sometimes. (Yes, priorities and all that, but eh, one step at a time.)

So, I’m still pushing forward with reading Rick Riordan’s Big Red Tequila to cover another item on my reading challenge (read a book set somewhere you’re going to travel to this year). San Antonio is happening, one way or another, in the fall so Miles and I can go visit Grammy and Bobby. I’m enjoying Big Red Tequila, though I’ll admit it’s not grabbing me quite the same as the Percy Jackson/Magnus Chase series. Murder mysteries haven’t always been my thing (which is why, though I enjoyed The Cuckoo’s Calling, J.K. Rowling/Robert Galbraith’s The Silkworm is still looming on my shelf, unread).

Speaking of shelves, I thought I’d take this time to glance at what I do have that I enjoy and have enjoyed reading. Here are three series that I reread often.

  • The Tree of Avalon trilogy by T.A. Barron – while these three books are considered a continuation of The Lost Years of Merlin, the trilogy can be read without reading the other part of the series. This trilogy was part of how I developed my  world of Yggdrasil in my Norse mythology story (Utangard, remember?). In Barron’s Avalon universe, Avalon itself is depicted as a great tree, much like Yggdrasil in Norse mythology. The characters travel between roots, which are different worlds, connected at the trunk. It is possible to travel up the tree, but rarely done. I always enjoy rereading this series once every couple of years.
  • The Abhorsen series by Garth Nix – This is a much darker series than I normally read as a kid, but it has always stuck with me because the universe is so intricate, so amazing. Garth Nix has been returning to it recently, which makes me super happy. The world is set into the modern world (but around the World War II era in terms of technology) and the Old Kingdom, separated by the wall. In the Old Kingdom, magic is still present and it interferes with technology. Within the Old Kingdom, the former royal family no longer rules and the Abhorsen helps hold a frail control over the magics. They are anti-necromancers, returning the dead and magical creatures to the world of the dead. They do so using the powers of seven bells, one for each gate of death. An old trouble disturbs the Old Kingdom and tries to move into the more modern world. The previous Abhorsen died, bringing Sabriel, his daughter, to power much quicker than anticipated. This is another series that is reread every couple of years.
  • The Blue Sword and The Hero and The Crown by Robin McKinley – As most of you may know/can imagine, I love stories with strong female leads. This two book series fits the bill. It has a similar feel to it as the Abhorsen series in terms of an old kingdom with magic (though it’s nearly gone or watered down in this world) and a modern world (again in a World War II technology/sensibilities way). These books are set in a desert setting, though, with a rich hill country and a strong culture slowly dying out. In the first book. The Blue Sword, a young woman is stolen away from a military base by the King of the old kingdom. It is discovered she has a connection to Aerin, the legendary heroine who saved the kingdom from the wrath of a dragon. The Blue Sword covers her adventure and how she helps the kingdom while The Hero and The Crown is the story of Aerin.

I have others on my shelves (yes, anyone who knows me is probably wondering why I didn’t include Harry Potter, but… really, Harry Potter is so well known and it speaks for itself. Not a lot of people know about these three series, I think) but these three are a great place to start.


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