Saturday, August 4, 2018

The Canongate Myth series

I've been a fan of the Canongate myth series pretty much since it launched - which I think was around 2005, so when Canongate were offering a bundle to review a month or so ago I jumped at the chance. They arrived whilst I was on holiday - I can think of few nicer things to be waiting for you when you get home then a good sized parcel of books - and here they are...

I need to go through the books I have, and get a comprehensive list of the series. I know I've written about some of them on here in the past (definitely Baba Yaga Laid an Egg and A.S. Byatt's Ragnarok) and read a few more pre blogging days but it's been a while.

Out of the six sent to me there are a couple I've already read and am keen to read again - Ali Smith's 'Girl Meets Boy' which I don't remember much about and don't think I really got first time, and Margaret Atwood's 'The Penelopiad' which I loved when I first read it, and is an excellent companion to Madelaine Miller's 'Circe' which I've recently finished.

There are a couple I haven't read but am quite excited about - Karen Armstrong's 'A Short Histort of Myth' and Jeanette Winterson's 'Weight'. Winterson is forever on my list of authors I feel I should read but somehow haven't. There's no particular reason for not having read her, this book is a timely push to get on with it.

And then there's a couple I'd never have picked up, which makes them an excellent opportunity. David Grossman's 'Lion's Honey' and Philip Pullman's 'The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ'. With the Pullman it's partly a relative lack of interest in biblical myths, partly a lack of interest in Pullman after losing patience with 'The Amber Spyglass'. The Grossman is reminding me how few books I read by men. I'm looking forward to all of them.


  1. I think we had the most virulent discussion ever in my evening book group over the Pullman so I am going to be very interested in your reaction to it. We definitely had people there with polar opposite views.

  2. I've only really read the northern lights trilogy. Loved the first one, thought the second was okay, totally lost patience with the third one which I thought was overblown and pretentious. It will be interesting to read this one, my expectations are definitely well managed for it.

  3. I share your views of the Northern Lights. Good Man Jesus... is very different, cleverly done and short! I really enjoyed it, and went to hear his talk in the Sheldonian when it was launched. I love this series too - and have quite a few still to read. Hope you enjoy them.

    1. Just reading Weight at the moment and really enjoying it too. The whole series is a genius idea.