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Now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on for ever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.C.S. Lewis, The Last Battle
I’m Maya Joelle: writer of fantasy and poetry, voracious reader, enthusiastic conversationalist, and chaser of all that is good and truth and beautiful.
I have been a lifelong bookdragon, and it started with Lewis and Tolkien and Wilder. My father read the Narniad and The Hobbit aloud to me when I was six. I listened to the Little House audiobooks at an even younger age. And since then, I have
read devoured every good book I could get my hands on.
My parents soon ran out of books to give me. We exhausted resource after resource. Eventually, I learned not only to love reading for itself, but for the gift it gave me.
I have seen the world through thousands of eyes. I have gone through adventures and lives and experiences far different than my own, and I have discovered the power of story to show me truths in a far more impactful way than by simply being told.
And now, it’s my turn to share this gift with you.
Welcome to a library of wonder.
what is Bibliotheca?
Bibliotheca is a free online resource with book reviews and lists, indexed by title, author, genre, topic, and age range. I’ve only included books which I recommend; you’ll find no negative reviews here.
It’s also a place to get free, personalized book recommendations. Are you looking for the perfect next read? Click here to learn more about my recommendation system.
Bibliotheca is Latin for “library.” I chose the tagline “a library of wonder” because of the life-changing ability of books to show us the world in a different way. To make us see the wonder of things.
why should you trust me?
At least, not yet.
Everyone has different tastes in books, so what I like may not necessarily be what you do. We’re all tempted by different things, so a book that doesn’t cause me to sin might lead you to do so. Different people can tolerate different levels of violence, so what I’m comfortable with might disturb you.
Don’t trust me. Learn for yourself what you want in a book, and then read my reviews with that in mind. If you don’t like fantasy, feel free to skip those books. If swearing crosses your line, then avoid books with that content. Draw a clear line between what content you do and don’t want to read, and stick to it.
But if you’re wondering about my credentials to recommend books… allow me to share 😊
- I started reading novels at age six (over a decade ago) and haven’t stopped since.
- I’m the oldest in a large homeschooling family. My parents taught me using a classical model, with elements of Charlotte Mason and lots of nature study. I’m graduating in spring 2021 with plans to attend a liberal arts college for a degree in philosophy or Latin.
- I’ve been recommending books to my siblings and friends, with a high success rate, for years. I also often help my mom’s friends find books for their children to read.
- I consistently read one to two hundred books per year (after learning that this is abnormal, I’ve decided I must be a crazily fast reader 😅) — not just for pleasure, but because I enjoy considering what makes a book good.
- I’ve studied literature since kindergarten, through programs like My Father’s World, Memoria Press, Roman Roads, and CenterforLit.
- As an avid writer, I’ve spent a lot of time learning about story structure and technique. By putting these things into practice in my own works, I’ve come to recognize when they are used well (and badly) in others’ books.
- And, most importantly, I want to help you! I’m firmly convince that every single human has the potential to read and love good books. If you think you’re the exception, let me enlighten you, my friend: it’s not that you don’t like books, it’s that you haven’t found the right one yet. And that’s what I’m here to help you do.
age range guide
I’ve categorized books into four age ranges as a general suggestion. Sometimes this is based on reading level; other times, on content and themes.
I don’t want to legislate your morality. So please, use your own judgment when deciding what is right for you and your family. If you disagree with my age range, go ahead and disregard it. I don’t agree with everyone I know. It’s part of what makes life so interesting.
That being said, here are the age ranges I’ve chosen: