Once Upon a Time Faery Challenge

I need another reading project in my life. I’m already reading through the Newbery award and honor books, re-reading the works of Madeleine L’Engle, and working on my TBR list. However, I just couldn’t resist Carl’s (Stainless Steel Droppings) Once Upon a Time Challenge. The Once Upon a Time Challenge will take place beginning Thursday, March 22nd (I’m late, per usual) and will end on Midsummer Night’s Eve, June 21st. The challenge is to read five fantasy/folklore/faery related books in that period of time. Actually, as you can read at Carl’s site, the challenge is more complicated than that with different “quests” to choose from, but I’m simplifying. So here are my chosen books for the challenge, chosen mostly from my already long TBR list.


Bella at Midnight by Diane Stanley. Brown Bear Daughter read this Texas Bluebonnet Award nominee and said it’s her new favorite. It’s the story of a blacksmith’s daughter who finds out she’s really the daughter of a knight. Then, she goes on a quest to save the kingdom with the help of three enchanted gifts and . . . I don’t know if it ends happily ever after or not, but I’m looking forward to finding out.

According to Wikipedia, The Anubis Gates (1983) is a time travel fantasy novel by Tim Powers. It won the 1983 Philip K. Dick Award and is regarded as one of Powers’s best works.

The Curse of Chalion by Lois Master Bujold is, according to Wikipedia again, “a 2001 fantasy novel by Lois McMaster Bujold. It was nominated for the Hugo Award for Best Novel and the World Fantasy Award for Best Novel in 2002.”

The King of Ireland by Padraic Colum is a re-telling of Irish folklore that I’ve been meaning to read for quite some time.

The Wand in the Word: Conversations with Writers of Fantasy edited by Leonard S. Marcus. It seems to me that during this particular challenge would be a good time to read this book of interviews with such authors as Susan Cooper, Madeleine L’Engle, Tamora Pierce, Lloyd Alexander, Franny Billingsley, Brian Jacques, Diana Wynne Jones, and Jane Yolen.

Those of you who are participating in the challenge, be sure to link your reviews at my Saturday Review of Books each Saturday.

5 thoughts on “Once Upon a Time Faery Challenge

  1. I loved Wand in the Word! It’s marvelous!

  2. “The Anubis Gates” has been on my list for a few years now.

    As for Padriac Collum, I’ve read his “Nordic Gods and Heroes”, so I can promise that he’s excellent at retellings. The book was beautifully written and it flowed like a novel. I’m interested in your thoughts on “The King of Ireland”!

  3. Very interesting choices. I haven’t read anything from your list, although The Anubis Gates is on my big list of books to get to at some point.

    Look forward to reading your thoughts on your choices as the challenge progresses.

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