Best books want's to welcome Kim White to the blog and say a massive thank you for this wonderful guest post.
“Girl Power: Reimagining Persephone”
Thank you, Annemarie, for inviting me to do a guest post for Best Books. I’m excited to be here and appreciate the opportunity.
You asked me to write about how this book came to be. One of the main sources of inspiration for this series was the Greek myth of Persephone. The myth is about a teenage girl who is kidnapped by, and forced to wed, Hades (god of the Underworld). When her mother, Demeter (goddess of agriculture), discovers that her daughter has been abducted, she withholds her gifts and everything withers and dies. This forces the gods to make a deal with her. They agree to let Persephone live above ground with Demeter for part of the year and with Hades the other part.
I’ve always been fascinated and bothered by this story. I don’t like the fact that Persephone is powerless and is not given a say in her own fate. It also gives short shrift to the amazing energy and power young women have. There is more to Persephone than the way she looks, but the myth doesn’t tell you that.
It was exciting for me to realize that if I didn’t agree with the myth I could rewrite it! In my retelling, it’s Persephone (Cora) who has the power to make things grow and she brings it to the underworld, which will cause all kinds of trouble for the bad guys. In the Imperfect Darkness series Hades (who we know as “the voice”) has something to do with Cora’s arrival in the underworld, but their attraction is mutual and he never forces her to do anything. When they finally meet, in book three, Cora is pursuing him (rather than the other way around).
A lot of authors are reimagining fairy tales and myths. And the female characters are refreshingly strong, brave, powerful, smart, resourceful women who are making an impact, and shaping their futures. The girls who were locked away in towers are smashing down the walls and rescuing themselves (and maybe a prince along the way). I’m excited to be one of those authors and hope readers enjoy what I’ve done with Persephone.
p.s. I reference a LOT of other myths and stories in this series, so you’ll see glimmers of other heroines, heros, and monsters. I had a lot of fun riffing on my favorite stories and creating an entirely new world for the reader to explore.
The White Oak by Kim White
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This book started in a fast paced and drama filled way. Cora is sucked into a sinkhole at her father’s grave within seconds Cora her brother and grandmother are sucked into the blackness of the ground. Cora soon is on the rollercoaster ride of her life after being spite out into a river below the sinkhole that is really the entrance to the underworld. A place filled with danger and death Cora is faced with having to work out what’s going on and will she be able to get out alive before it’s too late.
This book was action packed from the very begging you get the basic story line for the character then zoom your right into an epic story that was not only fun and exciting but nonstop danger and fear. I loved Cora and her brother they made such great characters to read about and the people they meet along the way could only be described as brilliant.
The story was at times dark but the detail and love that went into the book shined through the whole time I could almost see the underworld like I was there myself. Where the book was based in the underworld you would think that much death would bring the book down but in truth I felt that the author wrote the book as death is not the end just a new begging to a story that’s ongoing simply wonderful.
I have no faults with this book and for me it was everything I needed in a book a great start to a new and imaginative series.
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