As a children's book illustrator, Denise has many things to say about the process, her struggles, and children's books on the market today.
The Mythos Academy Series is a great urban young adult series about a young gypsy girl, Gwen Frost, who finds herself in a strange high school populated by some awesome characters: Valkyries, Vikings, Spartans, Romans, Ninja, and Logan freaking Quinn, who is possibly the most gorgeous boy at the school, according to Gwen. Gwen feels like an outsider and has all her life because she is gifted with psychometry, which allows her to see the feelings, thoughts, and memories of those she touches. This works with people, animals, or inanimate objects. The school is a safe haven for descendants of ancient warriors who are champions of the gods, such as Athena, Aphrodite, Nike (winged Victory), Norse gods, Native American deities and more. Each of the high school students and professors has not only the strength of their heritage but also an extra gift. Some have the gift of healing, or sight, or tracking, etc. Gwen’s grandmother has the gypsy gift of fortune-telling or seeing the future. That would be a great gift to have to stay away from traffic jams.
The series follows Gwen’s journey of discovery about herself, her heritage, her mother’s death and her being chosen as the champion of Nike against the evil god Loki. There are many twists and turns in this journey and each book is so engaging as well as captivating that you simply can’t put them down. Jennifer Estep explores family relationships, tragedy, grief, self-sacrifice, greed, envy and true friendship in her 6 book series. The wonderful three extra in-between books follow the lives and drama in some of the other characters in the story and add some great background information. (First Frost—before #1; Halloween Frost—after #1; Spartan Frost—after #4) Along the way, Gwen finds/makes friends, which was a great surprise to her. She had no idea she was friend-worthy. Don’t we all feel that way at one time or another?
Legends and Legacies
I always loved reading about the Greek and Roman gods and their legends, as well as a few of the Norse god lore. I found the stories intriguing and these books weave them all together with a few more that I never heard about. I was captivated all the way to the end, not sure which way the final battle would go. I would recommend this series as a fun fantasy YA novel series. I read them all on my Kindle but hey are also available in paper versions.
Touch of Frost #1/
Kiss of Frost #2/
Dark Frost #3/
Crimson Frost #4/
Midnight Frost #5/
Killer Frost #6
Author Jennifer Estep
Jennifer Estep blames Clash of the Titans and The Princess Bride (inconceivable!) for these books. She says she thought it was interesting that the gods and goddesses, monsters and mythological creatures along with the humans interacted with each other. That explains a lot of what happens in this series.
There is something very dark and mysterious about ancient fables and folklore. We don’t know really where one ends and the other begins. How much of fables are actually try? The Greek myths are based on some fact and some religious desire to explain the unexplainable. Why is it that we WANT to believe in fairies and trolls, telepathy and telekinesis, gods and goddesses? Is it that ancient DNA from our ancestors that tends to bleed through to the present or just an incredible imagination in each of us? Who knows? However, I do know that I am not the only one intrigued by stories of the fabulous past mixed with the present. If you love a good fantasy or fairy story, you just have to get these books.
I love a Frosty Comment.
Denise McGill (author) from Fresno CA on May 26, 2014:
@lizlizzie: I have to agree about the extensive backstory each issue of the series. It was a bit redundant but I get why she has to do it. Also the handling of the gay relationship was interesting. She even had it as a bit of a secret crush at first and then developed it further, which was unique. As for the explanation of the various myths, I think she is hoping to spur teens to do further research, which gets them reading more, which develops their curiosity of the world. I love that she did that. We need to get teens more involved in reading and less gaming, if you know what I mean.
lizlizzie on May 25, 2014:
I really enjoyed the series, although as it progresses the backstory being repeated gets a bit extensive. I wish there was more explanation of the various myths. I was pleasantly surprised to see a gay teenage relationship included and the matter of fact type of attitude Gwen responds to it in the just love whom you love, who that relationship is with is only dependent on that person treating you with respect and love in return.