Sunday 4 April 2021

Ariadne by Jennifer Saint

AriadneAriadne by Jennifer Saint
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - 2 days

Pages - 386

Publisher - Wildfire books

Source - Vine

Blurb from Goodreads

A mesmerising retelling of the ancient Greek myth of Theseus and the Minotaur. Perfect for fans of CIRCE, A SONG OF ACHILLES, and THE SILENCE OF THE GIRLS.

As Princesses of Crete and daughters of the fearsome King Minos, Ariadne and her sister Phaedra grow up hearing the hoofbeats and bellows of the Minotaur echo from the Labyrinth beneath the palace. The Minotaur - Minos's greatest shame and Ariadne's brother - demands blood every year.

When Theseus, Prince of Athens, arrives in Crete as a sacrifice to the beast, Ariadne falls in love with him. But helping Theseus kill the monster means betraying her family and country, and Ariadne knows only too well that in a world ruled by mercurial gods - drawing their attention can cost you everything.

In a world where women are nothing more than the pawns of powerful men, will Ariadne's decision to betray Crete for Theseus ensure her happy ending? Or will she find herself sacrificed for her lover's ambition?

Ariadne gives a voice to the forgotten women of one of the most famous Greek myths, and speaks to their strength in the face of angry, petulant Gods. Beautifully written and completely immersive, this is an exceptional debut novel.

My Review

I don't think I have read any retellings or if I have it has been one and a long time ago. Ariadne and Phaedra are princesses in Crete, their father King Minos and this is the retelling of Theseus and the Minotaur. I remember the Minotaur story and the labyrinth maze as a kid but didn't know its origins. The book looks at so much more than just King Minos and the Minotaur there are other Gods and legends mentioned, their stories and how they link or relate(d) to each other.

A running theme within the stories of females suffering because of the choices of men (Gods) and the after effects and ripples of that. Absolutely relevant (in some aspects) even in our modern day real life the parallels, greed, infidelity, power, lust, fascination, sex, obsession, wrath of Gods, death, blood lust, parenthood - the list goes on and on.

Ariadne is the main character, we follow through her innocence growing up then exposed to sex, abhorrence with things she bears witness to and experiences. Family ties, cause/effect, there is a level of this that some readers may find hits an emotive spot in them, depending on your life experiences identifying with some of the characters, stories and themes.

This doesn't read like a debut and it has renewed my want for reading myths and legends, some of the stories I hadn't heard since I was a kid and even then only snippets. I LOVED have a character we could walk through these with and quite a few I hadn't heard of at all. Retellings seem to be popular at the moment and I can't wait to grab some more, 4/5 for me this time. I will be keeping an active eye out for Saint's future works!

View all my reviews

1 comment:

  1. Great review, I’m definitely intrigued. Thanks for sharing your thoughts


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