The Tag Team Tag with Ariana! A Wyrd & Wonder Special

Beautiful tree-wolf artwork by chic2view from 123RF.com

The amazing Ariana of The Book Nook and I decided we wanted to do a tag for Wyrd and Wonder, without quite knowing what we wanted it to look like. We were agreed that something with word association and Six Degrees of Separation vibes would be fun, especially with the wild card of a second person’s imagination when making links and thus the Tag Team Tag was born! And this was so much fun, I could have happily carried on playing, so this may have to become a perennial thing *looks at Ariana*.

The rules, as far as there are any, are as follows:

  1. Pick a friend to play with
  2. Decide on a prompt to get you started (this can be absolutely anything you want it to be)
  3. Make a thematic connection to the book picked by your partner, Six Degrees stylie (see link above)
  4. See where your chain of books takes you (and make your chain as long as you like)
  5. Definitely link back to our posts so we can see your book chains and grow out TBRs

As we’re celebrating Wyrd and Wonder’s fifth birthday Ariana chose a suitably woody prompt. This is where our Tag Team book chain begins, then hop over to The Book Nook here to carry on reading.

Prompt: Magical Forests

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Mayri: well, I’m trying hard not to be repetitive here, so I’m going with Sarah Micklem’s Firethorn. The main character escapes drudgery by running to the hills and in the forests there she is god-touched. She returns to the world of people with divination and healing powers. It’s a very ‘earthy’ book with a peculiar love story, and is set in a world obsessed with class.

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Ariana: I’m going to choose Little Thieves by Margaret Owen, in which the main character Vanta is god-touched when she is abandoned by her mother and adopted by the goddesses Death and Fortune. It’s a retelling of the Goose Girl fairytale, and features inquisitors, curses, shapeshifters, and a wonderful heist!

Mayri: (Wow! That sounds really good! And that cover is *chef’s kiss*).

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OK, I know I said I was not going to be repetitive, but I have to say Saint Death’s Daughter by C S E Cooney here! Because Lanie has a very special relationship with the goddess of death and with a shape-shifter. This fabulous novel also features an ancestral pile and colourful forebears; catacombs and a cantankerous ghost; festivals and footnotes.

Ariana: (Further proof I should definitely prioritise this book!)

Mayri: Dooo iiittt! ❤

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Ariana: This makes me think of The Girl Who Fell Beneath the Sea by Axie Oh, in which a young girl gets sacrificed to the Sea God every year to try and calm the storms that ravage the coast. Mina sacrifices herself in place of her brother’s lover, and a dragon takes her to the Spirit Realm, where a festival is taking place in the hopes the Sea God will wake. While there, Mina also has encounters with her ancestors and finds herself drawn to the handsome yet brooding Shin.

Mayri: Oh my goodness, another gorgeous cover! What are you trying to do to me?! …

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Anyhow, I don’t know why exactly, but this immediately made me think of The House of Shattered Wings by Aliette de Bodard. Possibly because outside of a Studio Ghibli movie, this book was the first place I came across where dragons were linked with water instead of fire. I loved the dragon kingdom beneath the river Seine, and de Bodard’s brooding, beautifully dressed fallen angels and the contrast they made with the post-apocalyptic Paris setting. Also, an excellent supernatural murder mystery. (And yes, I’ve completely given up on trying not to repeat myself now)…

But wait, we’re nowhere near done yet! Head over to The Book Nook for the continuation of our Tag Team Tag!

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