February 27, 2022

The Cursed Carnival and Other Calamities: New Stories about Mythic Heroes by Rick Riordan, Carlos Hernandez, Roshani Chokshi, J.C. Cervantes, Yoon Ha Lee, Kwame Mbalia, Rebecca Roanhorse, Tehlor Kay Mejia, Sarwat Chadda and Graci Kim

The Cursed Carnival and Other Calamities: New Stories about Mythic Heroes by Rick Riordan, Carlos Hernandez, Roshani Chokshi, J.C. Cervantes, Yoon Ha Lee, Kwame Mbalia, Rebecca Roanhorse, Tehlor Kay Mejia, Sarwat Chadda, and Graci Kim
Rating: 5 Stars
Release Date: September 28, 2021
Format: eBook + Audiobook
Publisher: Rick Riordan Presents (Disney-Hyperion)

If you have enjoyed any of Rick Riordan’s books or any of the books that have been featured in the Rick Riordan imprint, you should without hesitation pick up The Cursed Carnival and Other Calamities: New Stories about Mythic Heroes. This book is a collection of stories that feature many of the characters readers have come to love since the start of the imprint: Aru Shah, Sikander Aziz, Zane Obispo, and more! While most of the stories feature characters that fans of the imprint will already be familiar with, there is one story that focuses on entirely new characters. Rick Riordan's contribution to the book, "My Life as a Child Outlaw" is his first foray into Irish/Celtic mythology. After reading it, I can't wait to see where he will take those characters in a full book-length story. 


Each story has its own merits: some are better than others and I think part of that is due to the complexity of the world that the story is based in (some stories with large amounts of worldbuilding simply don’t lend themselves to short stories). For the best reading experience, you should read the other books in the Rick Riordan Presents imprint before reading this book. The stories jump straight into the action and don’t waste any time reintroducing characters most readers will have met before.  


Overall, a very fun and entertaining collection of stories. I would happily recommend this book to fans of middle-grade mythology and fantasy action-adventure. I’m excited to read more about Rick Riordan’s take on Irish Mythology, and see where the other authors will go with their characters in the future!



About the Editor

Rick Riordan is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of over twenty novels for young readers, including the Percy Jackson series, the Kane Chronicles, the Magnus Chase series and the Trials of Apollo. He is also the author of the multi-award-winning Tres Navarre mystery series for adults.

For fifteen years, Rick taught English and history at public and private middle schools in the San Francisco Bay Area and in Texas. While teaching in San Antonio, Saint Mary’s Hall honored him with the school’s first Master Teacher Award.

While teaching full time, Riordan began writing mystery novels for grownups. His Tres Navarre series went on to win the top three national awards in the mystery genre – the Edgar, the Anthony and the Shamus. Riordan turned to children’s fiction when he started The Lightning Thief as a bedtime story for his oldest son.

Today, over one hundred million copies of his books are in print in the United States alone, and rights have been sold into more than 37 countries.

Rick Riordan now writes full-time. He lives in Boston with his wife and two sons.

About the Contributors

J.C. is a New York Times best-selling author of books for children and young adults. Her books have appeared on national lists, including the American Booksellers Association New Voices, Barnes and Noble’s Best Young Reader Books, as well as Amazon’s Best Books of the Month. She has earned multiple awards and recognitions, including the New Mexico Book Award, the Zia Book Award, and most recently the 2021 New Mexico Land of Enchantment Readers’ Choice Award.

She currently resides in the Land of Enchantment with her family, three spoiled dogs, and a lifetime collection of books. But she keeps part of her heart in Southern California, where she was born and raised. When she isn’t writing she is haunting bookstores and searching for magic in all corners of the world.

Her work is represented by Holly Root at Root Literary.


J.C. Cervantes Author Website

Connect with the Author on Instagram



Rebecca Roanhorse is a NYTimes Bestseller and a Nebula, Hugo and Locus Award-winning speculative fiction writer and the recipient of the 2018 Astounding (formerly Campbell) Award for Best New Writer.

Her novels include TRAIL OF LIGHTNING, STORM OF LOCUSTS, STAR WARS: RESISTANCE REBORN, and RACE TO THE SUN. Her upcoming novel BLACK SUN is set to release 10/13/2020.

She lives in Northern New Mexico with her husband, daughter, and pug. Find more at https://rebeccaroanhorse.com/ and on Twitter at @RoanhorseBex.



Roshani Chokshi is the author of commercial and critically acclaimed books for middle grade and young adult readers that draws on world mythology and folklore. Her work has been nominated for the Locus and Nebula awards, and has frequently appeared on Best of The Year lists from Barnes and Noble, Forbes, Buzzfeed and more. Her New York Times bestselling series includes The Star-Touched Queen duology, The Gilded Wolves, and Aru Shah and The End of Time, which was recently optioned for film by Paramount Pictures.

Roshani Chokshi Photo Credit: Aman Sharma

Yoon Ha Lee (yoonhalee.com) is the New York Times best-selling author of Dragon Pearl, a companion to this book and winner of the Locus Award and the Mythopoeic Award. He has also published several books for adults, including a standalone fantasy entitled Phoenix Extravagant, and the Machineries of Empire space opera trilogy: Ninefox Gambit, Raven Strategem, and Revenant Gun. Yoon draws inspiration from a variety of sources, e.g. Korean history and mythology, fairy tales, higher mathematics, classic moral dilemmas, and genre fiction. His website can be found at yoonhalee.com and his Twitter handle is @deuceofgears.

Yoon Ha Lee Photo Credit: Jeff Mann

Website | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Amazon | BookBub


KWAME MBALIA is a husband, father, writer, a New York Times bestselling author, and a former pharmaceutical metrologist in that order. He is the author of Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky, a Coretta Scott King Honor book. He lives with his family in North Carolina. Visit him online at kwamembalia.com.

Kwame Mbalia Author Photo by Bryan Jones Photograhy

About Carlos Hernandez

Hey there! I'm a Cuban-American Science Fiction Fantasy writer in love with the two languages that shape my every thought. I'm also a PhD. in English (specialized in Creative Writing), a college professor, and a genre writer or designer. Coffee is delicious

Connect with the author on Twitter. 




Graci Kim is the bestselling author of The Last Fallen Star, book one in the Korean mythology-inspired middle grade adventure series. Called a “sparkling yarn” by Entertainment Weekly, the Gifted Clans trilogy has been optioned by the Disney Channel for a live-action television series, and was a 2021 Goodreads Choice Award Nominee for “Best Middle Grade & Children’s Book”.

Graci is also one of the authors of The Cursed Carnival and Other Calamities short story collection, published by Rick Riordan Presents (Disney Hyperion), which became an instant New York Times bestseller.

In a previous life, Graci was a diplomat for the New Zealand foreign service, a cooking show host, and once ran a business that turned children’s drawings into cuddly toys. She lives in New Zealand with her husband and daughter. You can find her sometimes on Twitter (@gracikim), more often on Instagram (@gracikimwrites), and always at her website (www.gracikim.com).


Sarwat Chadda has lived and traveled throughout the world, from China to Guatemala. He’s been lost in Mongolia, abandoned at a volcano in Nicaragua and hidden up a tree from a rhino in Nepal. Not to mention being detained by Homeland Security in the US and chased around Tibet by the Chinese police. Maybe he just has that sort of face.

Anyway, now he’s trying to settle in one place and stay out of trouble. Hence his new career as a writer. It’s safe, indoors and avoids any form of physical danger.

Throughout his travels, Sarwat has soaked up the myths, legends and cultures of far away places. Now, with the Ash Mistry series, he aims to bring these unfamiliar tales of ten-headed demons and blue-skinned heroes back home and put them beside the exploits of Achilles and Thor. His heroes are Prince Rama and the demon-slaying Kali. Isn't it about time you met them too?


TEHLOR KAY MEJIA is a bestselling and award-winning author of young adult and middle-grade fiction.

Her debut young adult novel, WE SET THE DARK ON FIRE, received six starred reviews, as well as the Oregon Spirit Book Award for debut fiction, and the Neukom Institute Literary Arts Award runner up honor for debut speculative fiction. It has been featured on Seventeen, Cosmopolitan, and O by Oprah Magazine’s best books lists, and was a 2019 book of the year selection by Kirkus and School Library Journal. Its sequel, WE UNLEASH THE MERCILESS STORM, followed to continuing acclaim, while MISS METEOR (co-written with National Book Award Nominee Anna-Marie McLemore) was named to the American Library Association’s 2021 Rainbow List, honoring outstanding contributions in LGBTQIA teen fiction.

Tehlor’s debut middle grade novel, PAOLA SANTIAGO AND THE RIVER OF TEARS, was published by the Rick Riordan Presents imprint at Disney/Hyperion. It received four starred reviews, and was named Amazon’s best book of 2020 in the 9-12 age range. It is currently in development at Disney as a television series to be produced by Eva Longoria.

Tehlor lives with her daughter, partner, and two small dogs in Oregon, where she grows heirloom corn and continues her quest to perfect the vegan tamale. She is active on Twitter and Instagram @tehlorkay.

Tehlor Kay Mejia Photo Credit: Tia Reagan Photo




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