Friday, July 30, 2010

Discord's Apple by Carrie Vaughn

Summary (courtesy of GoodReads)When Evie Walker goes home to spend time with her dying father, she discovers that his creaky old house in Hope’s Fort, Colorado is not the only legacy she stands to inherit. Hidden behind the old basement door is a secret and magical storeroom where wondrous treasures from myth and legend are kept safe unit they are needed again. The magic of the storeroom prevents access to any who are not intended to use the items.

Evie must guard the storeroom against ancient and malicious forces, protecting the past and the future even as the present unravels around them. Old heroes and notorious villains alike will rise to fight on her side or to undermine her most desperate gambits. At stake is the fate of the world, and the prevention of nothing less than the apocalypse.

And here's what I thought:  I was already familiar with this author because I've read several of her books in the "Kitty" series.  So, I had high hopes for this book, and I wasn't disappointed.  As you can see from the summary, our main character is a young woman who's called home by her father, and then discovers there's a little more in the basement than she had originally thought.   Woven into this main plot is the story of Alex, a mysterious man Evie encounters, and who has a lot of history of his own.  In fact, Alex's history dates all the way back to the time of the Trojan Horse.   So, we've got some mythology here, giving us insight into Alex, but also bringing the old stories right into the present --- because something in the storeroom has caught the eye of Hera (you know, Hera?  Zeus' wife?  Yes, that Hera).    In addition to these intertwined stories, there's an additional storyline running through this book: the one that Evie is writing for a comic book that she collaborates on with a friend (which, incidentally, also has a strong female character in it).

I liked several elements of this book.   Besides the even pace, and descriptive writing that I have come to enjoy with Vaughn's other books, I really enjoyed the storytelling aspect here.  I liked that there were stories within stories, or stories going hand-in-hand with other elements of the main story.   And, I never felt like I couldn't keep track of who was who, or what was what.   I liked how there were little things I recognized in this book, like the magical objects, or certain characters (sorry -- no more on this because, as usual, I don't want to give any spoilers here).   I also really liked how Evie is a consistently strong female character.  Like any of us, she has moments of doubt.  But, she's confident and smart --- and she uses her head to get out of tough situations (not her looks, not her sex appeal, etc).   I felt she was realistically written, even in the face of some of the more fantastical elements of this story.

Overall, I thought this was a great book, and one that I've already recommended to some of my friends.  The idea of combining mythology with the current world was an interesting one, and I had been curious to see how Carrie Vaughn handled it.   She didn't let me down!

Where I got this book:  Library!


Roof Beam Reader said...

Hi, There!

Thanks for visiting my blog - I'm returning the favor (and I'm now a new follower).

Discord's Apple doesn't look like something I'd normally pick up, but this is why I love connecting with book bloggers; your description and review make it sound more personally interestnig. I might have to check it out and expand my horizions a bit (I tend to get bogged down with Classics and Literary Fiction).

Happy Reading (and Hopping!)
-Adam @ Roof Beam Reader

Ellie said...

Just joined your blog as a new groupie! Looking forward to lots of happy reading over here - and your beautiful fairies are lovely!

Anonymous said...

Just finished reading this book and also enjoyed it a good deal. I totally agree about the multiple story lines being interesting and well done - and NOT confusing. (Some authors could learn a few things on that point!)

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