Review: “Chalice,” Robin McKinley

Cover of The truth of the matter is, these days I reread a lot more than I read. I was thinking back over the books I’d read recently and almost all of them were ones I’d read before, that I was (or am) rereading for various reasons: Red DragonThe Hunger GamesRose Madder, dribs and drabs of Mairelon the Magician and A Wizard Alone. There’s nothing wrong with rereading; when I packed up to move to Seattle, the box of books contained the ones I knew I’d always be able to come back to.

But I’ve also been writing more lately, and as comfortable as my old favorites are, I needed some new grist in my mill, so this morning (is today still Monday?) I grabbed Chalice off my shelf — and read the entire thing in a day.

When I’m listing my favorite authors I don’t usually list Robin McKinley, although I’m not sure why. Spindle’s End is one of my all-time favorite books, and Deerskin and Beauty and her short-story collection A Knot In the Grain are books that are lodged in my heart like words on the tip of your tongue. And Chalice has absolutely wormed its way in there too. My copy clocks in at 263 pages, but it didn’t feel like it at all: I zoomed through about two-thirds of it on my (ungodly long) commute to and from Tukwila, and actually ignored Tumblr for several hours to finish it. Continue reading