What are the best books inspired by myths and folktales?

asked by Anonymous
451 contributors
39 solutions
  1. 36

    #1The Merlin Trilogy

    The Merlin Trilogy

    The Merlin Trilogy is Mary Stewart's book containing three stories about the life of Merlin, from his dangerous childhood, to his meeting with a young Arthur, and finally, to his battle to keep Camelot safe from a witch's grasp.

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    Jaime Camacho
    Written on April 22, 2018
    "I really enjoy the fantasy genre, especially fantasy book series. So when I picked up this book I didn't expect for this to become one of my favorite fantasy books of all time. It undoubtedly does the source material justice I will say that."
  2. 35

    #2Spindle's End

    Spindle's End

    Spindle's End is a young adult fantasy book by Robin McKinley which follows the story of Rosie, a child who was cursed by the evil fairy Pernicia to prick her finger on a spinning wheel spindle and fall into a poisoned sleep.

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    Heather Watson
    Written on April 27, 2018
    "Typical fairy tale story line, but not your typical writer. This is such a well-written book with words so eloquently written. It felt magical reading it. I enjoyed it until the very end! "
  3. 31

    #3Beastly (Kendra Chronicles)

    Beastly (Kendra Chronicles)

    Beastly is a contemporary retelling of the classic fairy tale Beauty and The Beast. Kendra the witch teaches Kyle Kingsbury a lesson for his cruelty by transforming him into a beast. To break the spell, the girl he truly loves must love him in return.

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    Peter Ryan
    Written on April 29, 2018
    "Beastly was a fun read. This contemporary is a nice touch on Beauty and the Beast."
  1. 30

    #4The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians)

    The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians)
    The Lightning Thief is the first book in Rick Riordan's series Percy Jackson & the Olympians. In this book, Jackson discovers that he's Poseidon's son and must stop a war between the gods by finding the thief who stole Zeus' master bolt. 
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    Brandon Myers
    Written on April 29, 2018
    "The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 1) is a book by Rick Riordan. It is available on Amazon for $6.39. This is the first book in the Percy Jackson series, and it is about Percy learning he is the son of Poseidon and he must stop a war between the gods. He must also save his mother from the depths of Hades. This is a great book that was the base for a very enjoyable movie as well. It fits the topic extremely well."
  2. 29

    #5No Good Deed

    No Good Deed

    No Good Deed is an adaptation and retelling of the classic Robin Hood tale written by Kara Connolly with a female lead character. It was first released in July 2017. It's about a modern archer who was sent back to the time of Robin Hood.

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    Bruce Gonzales
    Written on April 21, 2018
    "I loved robin hood as a kid and this book didn't really do it justice. I kind of get where they were going with it, but it was just a little bland."
  3. 26

    #6The Squire's Tale

    The Squire's Tale

    The Squire's Tale is a Gerald Morris book about the orphan Terence, who met King Arthur's nephew Gawain and was quickly appointed as his squire, leading him to a life filled with magical adventures.

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    Mark Martin
    Written on April 19, 2018
    "The Squire's Tale is an inspiring tale on King Arthur's era and follows a squire who conquers a journey. The story is based on magic and fantasy of the medieval times and follows an exciting story of will that brings the reader deep into the motivations of the hero. A good read for those who want to seek a deeper level of motivation from fantasy. "
  4. 25

    #7The Mabinogion

    The Mabinogion

    The Mabinogion is a collection of medieval folklore translated and compiled by Jeffrey Gantz. It includes tales from King Arthur's court, a story of a young man enduring several tasks to get wedded to a giant's daughter, and a story of a knight proving his valor.

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    Andrea McCoy
    Written on April 22, 2018
    "Any fan of books inspired by myths, folktales or lore should check out The Mabinogion. This is a collect of tales that have been passed down for centuries. It's sure to satisfy the needs of any fan of this type of work."
  5. 24

    #8Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles)

    Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles)

    Cinder by Marissa Meyer is the first novel in The Lunar Chronicles series. This book is about a 16-year-old cyborg named Cinder who has an evil stepmother who volunteers her for plague research after her stepsister got infected by a deadly plague.

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    Sonia Vásquez
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "Easily the best fairy tale retelling of Cinderella, updated to a space-and-cyborg fantasy that far exceeded my rather low expectations. Well written, eloquent and still very accessible to younger audiences. No swearing, no sex and for a change, the avoidance of strong language doesn't sound condescending."
  6. 23

    #9Ella Enchanted

    Ella Enchanted

    Cinderella is forced to obey every order because of a 'gift' from her fairy godmother. In Ella Enchanted, Gail Levine's 1997 Newberry winning rendition of the Cinderella story, Cinderella goes on a journey to free herself from the curse forever.

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    Paul Edwards
    Written on April 24, 2018
    "This Newberry winning rendition must be good. Award winning, 1277 customers give it a near perfect grade this book would be ideal for my daughter, Coco!"
  7. 22

    #10Le Morte D'Arthur: King Arthur and the Legends of the Round Table (Signet Classics)

    Le Morte D'Arthur: King Arthur and the Legends of the Round Table (Signet Classics)

    Le Morte D'Arthur: King Arthur and the Legends of the Round Table (Signet Classics) is a book written by  Thomas Malory, Keith Baines, and Robert Graves.  The book was published on October 1, 2001 by Signet Classics.

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    Jerry McDonald
    Written on April 20, 2018
    "A classic book that needs no explanation. While reading this book I was cast away to the far away land of King Arthurs. I could almost feel the tension rising between those sitting at the round table!"
  8. 20

    #11Beauty

    Beauty
    In Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of Beauty and the Beast, Beauty goes to the enchanted castle in the forest as a willing prisoner. She tames the Beast during her stay and they lived happily ever after.
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    Charles Collins
    Written on May 14, 2018
    "Beauty is an iconic children's story and i believe will remain for generations to come. My children love it and listen to my narration with fastidious enthusiasm when I am reading to them. Recently, when the new movie starring Emma Watson was released, with no doubt and hesitation I took my whole family to the theater. I must say that even though the movie has good graphical presentations, without reading the book itself, one will not understand the real experience of imagining and living the story in his head. The joy of reading and contemplating about the Beauty and her struggle with the Beast is unexplainable. One should read for himself and get a sense of real joy"
  9. 18

    #12The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians)

    The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians)

    Battle of the Labyrinth, the fourth book in Rick Riordan's series Percy Jackson & the Olympians, is centered on how Percy and his demigod friends braved a vast and dangerous maze to save Camp Half-Blood from an expected attack from the Titan Kronos. 

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    Jonathan Medina
    Written on May 12, 2018
    "The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians), is the forth book in the Percy Jackson series. It is a novel of great adventure and fantasy set in ancient greece. Following the lives of a young boy and his demigods pal on an amazing journey."
  10. 17

    #13Before Midnight (Once Upon a Time)

    Before Midnight (Once Upon a Time)

    Before Midnight: A Retelling of Cinderella is a fantasy romance fiction and a part of Once Upon a Time series written by Cameron Dokey. It is published in 2007 by Simon Pulse. 

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    Nancy Holland
    Written on April 23, 2018
    "I'm a fan of folk tales and myths, and the Cinderella story is one of my favorites. This is an interesting, fresh take on a familiar old story. The writing's a bit clunky and the story veers on unplausable at times, but it was enjoyable."
  11. 16

    #14Rose Daughter

    Rose Daughter
    Rose Daughter is a retelling of the classic fairy tale Beauty and the Beast. Beauty spends seven days with the Beast in his castle and manages to bring life back into the place. She falls in love with him and they live happily ever after. 
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    Kyle Lane
    Written on May 2, 2018
    "Provide a good synopsis of what the book is about. It capture the details without revealing too much about it."
  12. 15

    #15The Fairest Beauty (Hagenheim)

    The Fairest Beauty (Hagenheim)

    The Fairest Beauty is the third novel in the Hagenheim series. This young adult fantasy romance book is written by Melanie Dickerson, and it was published in 2013. This Snow White retelling comes with a twisted plot.

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    Maria Evans
    Written on May 4, 2018
    "Recently my son read The Fairest Beauty, a young adult fantasy romance novel written by Melanie Dickerson for his high school class assignment. Her enjoyed the book as it was a good blend of fantasy and myth. "
  13. 11

    #16Heart's Blood

    Heart's Blood
    Heart's Blood is the tale of Beauty and the Beast revisited. Caitrin wanders into a strange place called Whistling Tor and starts working as a scribe for the village chieftain, Anluan. Together, they work to break the curse on him and his people.
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    Bobby Hudson
    Written on April 22, 2018
    "A different take on an old classic "Beauty and the Beast. You might think this is a children's book but no, it's aimed primarily at young adults. This is a thriller inside of a mystery with lots of drama and action. Haunted woods, darkness, crumbling ruins, secrets and sorcery. It's quite well done and much better than I thought it would be when I started reading it. Did I mention it's a new book from national bestselling author Juliet Marillier. This is a near must read if you like thrillers and mystery. I'd recommend you give this a chance. It's not an old fairy tale."
  14. 10

    #17East

    East
    East is a young adult fantasy book by Edith Pattou which follows the story of Rose, a girl who is swept away by a white bear on an adventure of mystery and love. It was published in 2003 and is the first book in the East series.
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    Beverly Howard
    Written on April 24, 2018
    "I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It is a great adaption of an old Nordic fairy tale. The imagery is fantastical, and the heroine is someone you can easily relate to. Rose, the youngest child of a mapmaker and his wife, sets out on a journey of self discovery where she befriends a lovely beast of a bear. It is a great interpretation of a classic folklore and I highly recommend it for everyone to enjoy. "
  15. 9

    #18The Once and Future King

    The Once and Future King

    The Once and Future King is a book by T.H. White, most of which takes place in "Gramarye", the name White gives to Britain, that tells the story of King Arthur's reign - his journey and his battles with his kingdom. 

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    Jonathan Larson
    Written on May 3, 2018
    "A great tale that everyone knows. Lots of good reviews and a nice price. It's worth the time reading it to escape to a different place."
  16. 6

    #19Wildwood Dancing

    Wildwood Dancing
    Wildwood Dancing is a fantasy book for young adults written by Juliet Marillier published on January 23, 2007 by 2007. It follows the story of five daughter from the castle of Piscul Draculi.
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    Paul Graham
    Written on May 7, 2018
    "I feel like it is slightly related to the 12 dancing princessess. Although there is more of a story in it."
  17. 6

    #20The Winter King (The Warlord Chronicles)

    The Winter King (The Warlord Chronicles)

    The Winter King is a historical fantasy novel by Bernard Cornwell. First published in 1995, it is the first novel in the Warlord Chronicles series. Set in Britain during the Dark Ages, it tells the story of the legendary King Arthur.

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    Martha Obrien
    Written on April 19, 2018
    "Outstanding novel!! Amazing twists. The characters are well developed and very interesting. Interesting battle scenes. A must read!!"
  18. 3

    #21The Crystal Cave

    The Crystal Cave

    The Crystal Cave is a fantasy novel written by Mary Stewart. It was first published in 1970 and is first of 5 novels focusing on the Arthurian legend. The story centers on Myrddin Emrys, also known as Merlin, and his journey to find a home.

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    Bruce Chen
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "Inspired by the Arthurian legend, The Crystal Cave is clearly heavily inspired by myths and folktales. I would recommend reading all 5 novels in the series to get an in-depth understanding of its inspiration."
  19. 0

    #22The Haunted Mesa: A Novel

    The Haunted Mesa: A Novel

    The Haunted Mesa: A Novel is an action-filled adventure literary fiction novel written by Louis L'Amour. It was published April 1, 1988 by Bantam.

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    Lawrence Keller
    Written on May 9, 2018
    "I really like novels that cover native american history, anything that covers it is very interesting because I can compare it to where I currently live and imagine the history and stories behind the land."
  20. 0

    #23My Fairy Stepmother

    My Fairy Stepmother

    My Fairy Stepmother written by Marni Prince and Jason Price published by Createspace in 2013 is a fictional children's book that gives a fresh perspective on stepmothers. This time Cinderalla is not the hero but her stepmother.

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    Olivia Barnett
    Written on May 2, 2018
    "I really liked this book and the authors who are celebrating their lives and trying to inspire other step families like themselves. It has very positive and encouraging messages for children who are have difficulties with divorce and adjusting to all the changes in their lives. All families have struggles they have to overcome and expressing it on a level for small children to understand is very admirable and worthwhile reading. Highly recommend "
  21. 0

    #24Yiddish Folktales (The Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library)

    Yiddish Folktales (The Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library)

    Yiddish Folktales is a compilation of legends and folktales edited by Beatrice Weinreich and translated by Leonard Wolf. Yiddish Folktales was published in 1988by Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library.

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    Amanda Snyder
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "My husband's family is from Poland, so I got this book hoping to learn more about Yiddish. The folk tales were interesting, but I loved the history about the tales that the book had before each folktale. I recommend this book to anyone trying to connect to their eastern European origins."
  22. 0

    #25The Hidden Folk

    The Hidden Folk
    The Hidden Folk: Stories of Fairies, Dwarves, Selkies, and Other Secret Beings is a Fantasy Folklore and Children's Fairy tale book written by Lise Lunge, illustrated by Beth Krommes.
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    Madison Gardner
    Written on May 3, 2018
    "The Hidden Folk tells stories of fairies, dwarves, river sprites, and all kinds of mythical creatures. It has awesome illustrations and the story is told at a 4th to 7th grade level. As a parent of a child who enjoys fantasy folklore, I bought this book and was not disappointed. It's only 80 pages, which is the perfect size for a 5th grader just getting interested in this literature."
  23. 0

    #26The Princess and the White Bear King

    The Princess and the White Bear King

    The Princess and the White Bear King is a children's fantasy book by Tanya Robyn Batt which follows the story of a beautiful northern princess who meets a white bear and goes with him on a magical journey. It was published in 2007 by Barefoot Books.

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    Harini Yadav
    Written on May 5, 2018
    "I think that the children’s fantasy book, “The Princess and the White Bear King” one of the best books inspired by myths and folktales, because it is an exciting story about a lovely northern princess who meets an endearing white bear and they go together on an incredible journey. The story is unique and the book contains beautiful illustrations. "
  24. 0

    #27The Blue Fairy Book

    The Blue Fairy Book
    The Blue Fairy Book is a book edited by Andrew Lang and illustrated by Henry Justice Ford which contains some of the best-known fairy tales through generations past. It is a compilation of 37 stories and was published in 1965 by Dover Publications.
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    Benjamin Thompson
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "I love reading these short stories over and over. They are so well-written and entertaining. I find myself picking it up all the time."
  25. 0

    #28The Gingerbread Man (Big Little Golden Book)

    The Gingerbread Man (Big Little Golden Book)

    The Gingerbread Man is a picture book by Nancy Nolte and illustrated by Richard Scarry. Published in 2004, it provides 32 pages of classic paint-style focusing on the adventures of the Gingerbread Man.

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    Robert Harper
    Written on May 15, 2018
    "The Gingerbread Man is a classic little picture book that is perfect for the younger crowd. Easy to read and follow wth great illustrations, this is part of the Little Golden Book series that everyone loves. Read about the Gingerbread man and the chase for the elusive cookie. Your youngster won't be dissapointed in this caper."
  26. 0

    #29The Gingerbread Man (Holiday House)

    The Gingerbread Man (Holiday House)
    The Gingerbread Man is a picture book by Eric A. Kimmel. Published in 1993 by Holiday House, it offers a retelling of the classic folktale about the Gingerbread Man.
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    Denise Martin
    Written on May 18, 2018
    "I will admit that I am the one who picked this book out because I just adore gingerbread men. Once it arrived, my kids fell in love with it too. It's a cute retelling of a well known favorite."
  27. 0

    #30Lion's Honey

    Lion's Honey

    Lion's Honey: The Myth of Samson is a fantasy mythology book written by David Grossman. This fiction book is first published in 2005 by Canongate US. 

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    Doris Sun
    Written on April 25, 2018
    "Lion's Honey: The Myth of Samson is written by Israel's most lauded contemporary writer retells the myth of Samson. This is one of the most interesting books I have read in a long time. This is def leave you unable to put this book down. Hands down a must read!"
  28. 0

    #31Cry of the Sea

    Cry of the Sea
    Cry of the Sea is a mythology and folk tales literary novel written by D. G. Driver. It was published April 2, 2017 by Melange Books. It follows Juniper Sawfeather as she saves mermaids.
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    Christine Snyder
    Written on May 11, 2018
    "This truly is a well written young adult style read. The story flowed beautifully and the story was entrancing"
  29. 0

    #32The Annotated Classic Fairy Tales

    The Annotated Classic Fairy Tales
    The Annotated Classic Fairy Tales is a book edited by Maria Tatar which contains 350 full-color illustrations of 26 fairytales, with a discussion of their historical and cultural origins. It was published in 2002 by W.W. Norton Company.

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    Jorge Luis Aguilar
    Written on May 5, 2018
    "The solution does not align well and seems a bit awkward"
  30. 0

    #33Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep

    Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep

    Princess Sonora is a fantasy book by Gail Carson Levine which follows the story of Princess Sonora, who considers herself so smart that she vows to choose for herself when she will be pricked by the spindle. It was published in 1999 by HarperCollins.

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    Anthony Meyer
    Written on May 4, 2018
    "Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep is a children's fairy tale book that follows a princess who finds her prince charming. However, this story provides a lot of comedic value and is a twist on traditional tales. While a short story, it does a great job at keeping readers engaged."
  31. 0

    #34The Sleeping Beauty

    The Sleeping Beauty

    The Sleeping Beauty is a fantasy romance book by Mercedes Lackey which follows the story of Rosamund, a princess who is cursed by her stepmother to fall into a deep slumber. It is the fifth installment in the Five Hundred Kingdoms series.

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    Carl Richardson
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "Charming tale filled with magic and suspense. I nice turn on the classic sleeping beauty story. I highly recommend it for all ages."
  32. 0

    #35Briar Rose

    Briar Rose

    Briar Rose is a young adult fantasy novel by Jane Yolen which follows the story of Rebecca and how she discovers that she is actually the Briar Rose in her grandmother's stories. It was published in 2002 by Tor Teen.

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    Austin Medina
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "This is an interesting read as it incorporates fairy tales along side actual history, in this case, the Holocaust. This could easily be one of those stories that middle schools are required to read each year as it has a powerful message within its pages. "
  33. 0

    #36A Kiss in Time

    A Kiss in Time

    A Kiss in Time is a young adult fantasy book by Alex Flinn that follows the story of Talia, a princess who fell into an enchanted sleep and who was awoken with a kiss by Jack, 300 years in the future. It was published in 2009 by HarperTeen.

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    Philip Ryan
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "The A Kiss in Time is one of the best books inspired by myths and folktales. I've read it many times now and anyone who likes romance would love this book. It even has comedy and peril so it will keep you wanting to read more and more. Even though it totally doesn't need one, I loved the book so much I almost want it to have a sequel. You'll love the characters and how a princess from the 17th century is exposed to 21st century activities and luxuries. Definitely worth reading"
  34. 0

    #37Beauty Sleep: A Retelling of Sleeping Beauty

    Beauty Sleep: A Retelling of Sleeping Beauty

    Beauty Sleep: A Retelling of Sleeping Beauty is a young adult fantasy book by Cameron Dokey which follows the story of Princes Aurore who is cursed but who chose to embark on a quest to save herself and her kingdom. It was published in 2006.

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    Jacqueline Powell
    Written on May 1, 2018
    "In this re-telling of a classic tale there are enough plot twists and other differences to make for an enjoyable tale for a pre-teen girl."
  35. 0

    #38West of the Moon

    West of the Moon
    West of the Moon is a historical fiction novel by Margi Preus which follows the story of Astri, a young Norwegian girl who desperately wants to escape to America, and who finds magic and adventure on her journey there.
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    Zachary Ferguson
    Written on May 3, 2018
    "This was an alright book. It definitely is aimed towards younger readers. If you enjoy the Harry Potter books, you should give this one a chance."
  36. 0

    #39Jack of Fables Vol. 2: Jack of Hearts

    Jack of Fables Vol. 2: Jack of Hearts

    Jack of Fables Vol. 2: Jack of Hearts is a Sequential Art, Fantasy, Supernatural, Folktales, Graphic Novel written by Bill Willingham and Matthew Sturges. It was published October 3, 2007 by Vertigo.

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Summary

Best What are the best books inspired by myths and folktales
RankSolutionsTypeVotesPrice
1The Merlin TrilogyBooks 36 Paid
2Spindle's EndBooks 35 Paid
3Beastly (Kendra Chronicles)Books 31 Paid
4The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians)Books 30 Paid
5No Good DeedBooks 29 Paid
6The Squire's TaleBooks 26 Paid
7The MabinogionBooks 25 Paid
8Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles)Books 24 Paid
9Ella EnchantedBooks 23 Paid
10Le Morte D'Arthur: King Arthur and the Legends of the Round Table (Signet Classics)Books 22 Paid
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