This Top 5 series started back in October 2018 and I kind of lost motivation for making it every week. But it’s back! This is a series of books that I want to read that all have a common theme. Previously on the blog I have focused on witches, werewolves, thrillers, faeries, fairy tale re-tellings, high fantasy and many more. I am going to try and bring this series back for every Saturday.
The Upcoming Schedule Is:
4/18/20 — Sibling Relationships
4/25/20 — Books Under 300 Pages
5/2/20 — Retellings
5/9/20 — Books with a Number in the Title
5/16/20 — Books by Debut Authors
5/23/20 — Books about Plants/Flowers (Can be on cover, in title or plot)
5/30/20 — Books from a Male POV
- Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
- Tag the original post (This one!)
- Tag 5 people
I almost didn’t even do this topic because technically I had fairy tale retellings as a topic when I first started doing the Top 5 series, but that was before I opened it up as more of a group tag where everyone participates. But since I’ve already technically done fairy tale retellings, I decided to focus on retellings that aren’t about fairy tales. There is something so awesome about well done retellings. I love reading a familiar story in a whole new way. Retellings have become super popular lately and are all over the place. My entire TBR is filled with books that reimagine old stories. It’s fascinating how many different ways the same story can be told and honestly that’s amazing. I love experiencing a favorite tale in a whole new way. Anyways, these are the top 5 retellings that I want to read.
Retelling of — King Arthur legend
In this gorgeous standalone companion to the critically acclaimed fantasy, The Boneless Mercies, April Tucholke spins a bold and blood-hungry retelling of the King Arthur legend that is perfect for fans of Naomi Novik, Garth Nix, and Laini Taylor.
On the heels of a devastating plague, Torvi’s sister, Morgunn, is stolen from the family farm by Uther, a flame-loving Fremish wolf-priest who leads a pack of ragged, starving girls. Torvi leaves the only home she’s ever known, and joins a shaven-skulled druid and a band of roaming Elsh artists known as the Butcher Bards. They set out on a quest to rescue Torvi’s sister, and find a mythical sword.
On their travels, Torvi and her companions will encounter magical night wilds and mystical Drakes who trade in young men. They will sing rowdy Elshland ballads in a tree-town tavern, and find a mysterious black tower in an Endless Forest. They will fight alongside famous Vorseland archers and barter with Fremish wizards. They will feast with rogue Jade Fell children in a Skal Mountain cave, and seek the help of a Pig Witch. They will face wild, dangerous magic that leads to love, joy, tragedy, and death.
Torvi set out to rescue a sister, but she may find it’s merely the first step toward a life that is grander and more glorious than anything she could have imagined.
Okay so this is number one on my list and I haven’t read it yet because I just feel like there is a mood for April’s books. She is one of my favorite authors and I just love her dark atmospheric writing and I am not super familiar with the legend of King Arthur, but I know that April Genevieve Tucholke will deliver a story that I enjoy.
Retelling of — King Lear by William Shakespeare
A kingdom at risk, a crown divided, a family drenched in blood.
The erratic decisions of a prophecy-obsessed king have drained Innis Lear of its wild magic, leaving behind a trail of barren crops and despondent subjects. Enemy nations circle the once-bountiful isle, sensing its growing vulnerability, hungry to control the ideal port for all trade routes.
The king’s three daughters—battle-hungry Gaela, master manipulator Reagan, and restrained, starblessed Elia—know the realm’s only chance of resurrection is to crown a new sovereign, proving a strong hand can resurrect magic and defend itself. But their father will not choose an heir until the longest night of the year, when prophecies align and a poison ritual can be enacted.
Refusing to leave their future in the hands of blind faith, the daughters of Innis Lear prepare for war—but regardless of who wins the crown, the shores of Innis will weep the blood of a house divided.
I’m not a huge Shakespeare fan, and honestly, I didn’t even know that this was a Shakespeare retelling when I bought it, but I totally want to read it. I felt like Shakespeare’s writing was difficult to read through, but his stories are classics, so I’m sure he did something right. This high fantasy sounds so intriguing and apparently it has morally grey characters and stays true to the original play but also feels like an original story. I was hype for this before I knew it was a retelling and now that I have a copy I can’t wait to read it.
Retelling of — The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells
Sixteen-year-old Juliet Moreau has built a life for herself in London—working as a maid, attending church on Sundays, and trying not to think about the scandal that ruined her life. After all, no one ever proved the rumors about her father’s gruesome experiments. But when she learns he is alive and continuing his work on a remote tropical island, she is determined to find out if the accusations are true.
Accompanied by her father’s handsome young assistant, Montgomery, and an enigmatic castaway, Edward—both of whom she is deeply drawn to—Juliet travels to the island, only to discover the depths of her father’s madness: He has experimented on animals so that they resemble, speak, and behave as humans. And worse, one of the creatures has turned violent and is killing the island’s inhabitants. Torn between horror and scientific curiosity, Juliet knows she must end her father’s dangerous experiments and escape her jungle prison before it’s too late. Yet as the island falls into chaos, she discovers the extent of her father’s genius—and madness—in her own blood.
Inspired by H. G. Wells’s classic The Island of Dr. Moreau, The Madman’s Daughter is a dark and breathless Gothic thriller about the secrets we’ll do anything to know and the truths we’ll go to any lengths to protect.
Okay so lately I’ve been feeling like reading more gothic books. I recently read Ghost Wood Song and it just gave me these awesome gothic vibes that I wanted more gothic books, so I looked through my books to see what gothic books I owned and discovered this book. I had no idea that it was a retelling and I haven’t read The Island of Dr. Moreau and have no idea what it was about, but I think that’s the great thing about retellings is that they can introduce you to new stories. I will probably read this really soon though because I’m dying for a great gothic read.
Retelling of — Beowulf Poem
Two mothers—a suburban housewife and a battle-hardened veteran—struggle to protect those they love in this modern retelling of Beowulf.
From the perspective of those who live in Herot Hall, the suburb is a paradise. Picket fences divide buildings—high and gabled—and the community is entirely self-sustaining. Each house has its own fireplace, each fireplace is fitted with a container of lighter fluid, and outside—in lawns and on playgrounds—wildflowers seed themselves in neat rows. But for those who live surreptitiously along Herot Hall’s periphery, the subdivision is a fortress guarded by an intense network of gates, surveillance cameras, and motion-activated lights.
For Willa, the wife of Roger Herot (heir of Herot Hall), life moves at a charmingly slow pace. She flits between mommy groups, playdates, cocktail hour, and dinner parties, always with her son, Dylan, in tow. Meanwhile, in a cave in the mountains just beyond the limits of Herot Hall lives Gren, short for Grendel, as well as his mother, Dana, a former soldier who gave birth as if by chance. Dana didn’t want Gren, didn’t plan Gren, and doesn’t know how she got Gren, but when she returned from war, there he was. When Gren, unaware of the borders erected to keep him at bay, ventures into Herot Hall and runs off with Dylan, Dana’s and Willa’s worlds collide.
The only Beowulf retelling I’ve read is The Boneless Mercies and I thought it was kind of cool. This book has gotten a ton of hype, so I am kind of intrigued to see what it’s all about. I don’t really know what to expect at all because none of my friends have reviewed it, but the community seemed to love this book.
Retelling of — The Princess Bride by William Goldman
A STABLE BOY
When her father dies, Princess Amarande is given an ultimatum: Marry the leader of one of the four neighboring kingdoms, or lose her crown—and possibly her life. And to force her hand, her beloved, the stable boy Luca, is kidnapped.
But Amarande was raised to be a warrior, not a sacrifice.
And nothing will stop her from saving her true love and rescuing her kingdom.
The acclaimed author of Sea Witch turns the classic damsel-in-distress tale on its head with this story of adventure, identity, and love.
Who doesn’t love The Princess Bride? I am a huge fan of the movie and I didn’t even know that it was a book until recently. (But I have heard that in this case the movie is way better than the book.) What a fun story to have as inspiration for a retelling! I honestly don’t need to know anything else about this book for it to be on my TBR. The Princess Bride is such a feel good classic, so I am super hype that it’s going to get a retelling!
Sam @ Sam Still Reading
Elanor @ Reading At Teatime
Michelle @ Love, Stars, Books
Milana @ A Couple Reads
Kathryn @ The Book Date
Check out other Book Blogger’s Top 5!
Nen & Jen @ Nen & Jen —Top 5 Sat: Retellings on my TBR
Jill @ Jill’s Book Blog — Top 5 Saturday — Retellings
Allisa White @ Allisa White’s Book Blog —5 Retellings That Knocked My Socks Off
Blair @ Feed the Crime — –|Retellings on my TBR… Top 5 Saturday|-
Becky @ Becky’s Book Blog — Retelling’s on my TBR — Top 5 Saturday!
Bella @ Bella — Top 5 Retellings
The Irresponsible Reader — Top 5 Saturday: Retellings That Have Stuck With Me
What are some of your favorite retellings? Which ones would you recommend? Have you ever read any of the retellings that I listed? What is your favorite classic story or fairy tale? Make sure to comment below so we can talk about retellings!