Probably my last book of the year. It was a very good anthology filled with folklore and mythologies (a subject that I really love) that I have not been usually exposed to but I enjoyed reading about very much. Some were better than others, some felt quite flat.
Rating for each story
Forbidden Fruit by Roshani Chokshi 3.5/5
Bittersweet story. Had lovely turns of phrases. Something didn’t quite click with me though. I felt the writing, while super pretty, kept me at a distance and didn’t allow me to connect with the characters or the story.
Olivia’s Table by Alyssa Wong 4/5
Sad ghost story, filled with melancholy and loss and also honor and respect. It made me feel things.
Steel Skin by Lori M. Lee 2.5/5
I didn’t like this one mostly because I kinda guessed the twist and because the end was left up in the air. Not sure if the element of the androids helped or hindered the story the author was trying to tell.
Still Star-Crossed by Sona Charaipotra 3.5/5
Creepy but good.
The Counting of Vermillion Beads by Aliette de Bodard 3.5/5
I felt lost during most of the story and had a hard time differentiating Cam and Tam until halfway through. I am glad the author retold this folktale in a way that the sisters weren’t enemies but helped each other out.
The Land of the Morning Calm by E.C. Myers 4/5
This one might be my favorite so far. It made me cry. It felt like a story, even if it was a short one. It left me feeling satisfied.
The Smile by Aisha Saeed 4.5/5
By far my favorite. It was lovely and powerful and rang true to me. This is what I expect of retelling.
Girls who Twirl and other Dangers by Preeti Chhibber 2/5
Meh. Didn’t love it. It was only ok.
Nothing into All by Renée Ahdieh 3.5/5
Well-written and very cute.
Spear Carrier by Rahul Kanakia 1/5
Didn’t like this one. Couldn’t relate to it at all and it was too vague and emotionless for me to care.
Code of honor by Melissa De la Cruz 2.5/5
Felt jumbled and all over the place. I didn’t hate it but I couldn’t connect with it.
Bullet, Butterfly by Elsie Chapman 3/5
Man, this one made me sad. I wished it would’ve ended differently, but it is what it is.
Daughter of the Sun by Shveta Thakrar 3/5
Sometimes it rushed and the characters didn’t possess enough depth. The story itself was interesting.
The Crimson Cloak by Cindy Pon 4.5/5
I really liked this one. I loved that the author gave the weaver a decisive voice and that their tale is one of choice on both sides.
Eyes like Candlelight by Julie Kagawa 5/5
I loved this one. Probably because I’m familiar with some Japanese mythology. The story was very well-written and catches you immediately, not letting you go until the end.