Happy Tuesday everyone! I hope your week is going great. Otherwise, I hope that it will start looking up in the coming days. It is my fervent hope that it will usher in positive energy, blessings, healing, and forgiveness for everyone. As it is Tuesday, it is also time for a Top 5 Tuesday update. Top 5 Tuesday was originally created by Shanah @ the Bionic Bookworm but is now currently being hosted by Meeghan @ Meeghan Reads.
This week’s topic: Top 5 Books Set an Alternate Universe
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien
No words of introduction are needed for one of the most renowned literary trilogies out there: J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings Trilogy. While the books can be challenging for their language (which Tolkien himself formulated), The Lord of the Rings Trilogy transport the readers to a world unlike no other. The idyll of Middle Earth was vividly and visually captured by Tolkien while, at the same time, introducing an interesting and diverse set of characters. Its prequel, The Hobbit, was equally scintillating.
Piranesi by Susanna Clarke
Nearly two decades after her searing debut with Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell (another great book set in an alternate universe by the way), Susanna Clarke made her long-awaited comeback in 2020 with her latest novel, Piranesi. The novel was released at the perfect moment, with the world locked up in quarantine as the pandemic was raging all over the world. Set in an underground world called the House, Piranesi was the story of isolation, further made realistic by the book’s focus on a limited cast of characters. This gave a more claustrophobic atmosphere.
The Chronicles of Narnia Series by C.S. Lewis
Another writer skilled at worldbuilding is British writer C.S. Lewis. Oh, yes, another British writer; I guess they really are great at creating new worlds. Anyway, C.S. Lewis was able to demonstrate this through his renowned book series, The Chronicles of Narnia. Narnia was so magical a world that it was adapted into a film series, like the first book series in this post. Lewis made Narnia come alive with his descriptive prose. He also gifted the world with some of the most memorable characters such as the Pevensies, Aslan, and Prince Caspian.
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
This one is a little bit of a deviation from the previous three. Rather than a world of fantasy, Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale provides a grim picture of the future. Set in the fictional Republic of Gilead, The Handmaid’s Tale is about Offred, the handmaid of the Commander, and his wife, Serena. In Atwood’s grim picture of the future, regular women have lost their ability to bear children, hence, the birth of Handmaids. This is one of many excellent pieces of dystopian fiction that have become ubiquitous recently. Another fine example is George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four.
Percy Jackson Series by Rick Riordan
I just love Greek mythology. It is no wonder that I enjoyed reading Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson Series. Percy’s adventures and misadventures made up for a compelling read.
I love three of those series- Lord of the Rings, Narnia, and Percy Jackson and the Olympians
Haven’t read Piranesi, but I absolutely love these others. I’ll be listening to the Narnia books with the kids this holiday season.