The Top 5 Saturday weekly meme was created by Amanda at Devouring Books.
- 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 probably won’t do this bit, play along if you want)
The Upcoming Schedule Is:
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
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski
A Retelling of: Hamlet by some obscure playwright
The reason I didn’t call this list “My Favorite Retellings” or something like that is this novel. I didn’t really enjoy much of this one. But man, it was gorgeously written. Before I started this blogged, I wrote a little about it on Goodreads: “Meticulously crafted, wonderfully and intricately written, fantastic characters, a world you’d love to live in, imaginative, creative, a concept so great, so well executed…aaaaaand I had to force myself to read it. I took 3 breaks from this novel, and had to drag myself back to it each time. I feel like I owe this book 5 stars because it deserves them, but I really want to give it 1.75 or so. There is no reason at all that I shouldn’t like it—people should love this work, actually. But I just didn’t.” Still, nine years later, this is the first novel that lept to mind when I started this list and I have vivid memories of a lot of the book. Can’t beat that.
Fuzzy Nation by John Scalzi
A Retelling of: Little Fuzzy by H. Beam Piper
An Avatar-esque story, that’s nowhere near as self-important and a whole lot more entertaining than the Cameron movie. Jack Holloway is a prospector on the planet Zarathustra who discovers a potentially sentient and language using species (that coincendentally are about the cutest things ever). Holloway has to figure out a way to keep the species from being wiped out by an uncaring corporation. This might actually be my favorite Scalzi novel.
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
A Retelling of: Cinderella
A YA SF re-imagining of the Cinderella story featuring a young woman with a cybernetic leg who attracts the attention of a Prince trying to help his people survive a plauge. It launches an epic series (also featuing re-tellings I could have filled this list with). I don’t know that the entire Lunar Chronicles series really delivered on the promise of this book, but I had a lot of fun with it. If you’re going to do a re-imagining, this is the way to do it.
* Jim C. Hines’ Princesses series also comes to mind at this point…maybe I should have included one of them…
Re Jane by Patricia Park
A Retelling of: Jayne Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
Brontë’s novel is one of my All-Time Desert Island Top 5 novels, and I’m a sucker for a retelling of it. This one is set in NYC in the late 1990’s. Jane Re, is a half-Korean, half-American orphan who is hired to be the au pair for a Chinese adoptee. It’s Jane Eyre and more. As I said when I posted about it, it’s a clever re-imagining, and/or a satisfying read.
A Retelling of: The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling
I remember reading this to my kids years ago, and being very affected by it myself. It’s haunting, playful, creepy and heartwarming. A brilliant way to retell the story of an lone man-child in a very foreign atmosphere by beings not fit to raise one—and their efforts to help him fit in his native society.