Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Book review: Dark of the Moon by Tracy Barrett

Dark of the Moon by Tracy Barrett (Published by Harcourt, September 19, 2011)

Fifteen-year-old Ariadne lives a very lonely life. Her mother is seen as the Goddess incarnate, and is high priestess of their matriarchal society on the island of Krete. Ariadne will be her successor, and so has the title of "She Who Will be Goddess," which means she has no friends and is feared by many people. Her brother, Asterion, is physically and mentally disabled, and many people see him as a monster because he is unable to stop himself from hurting people, even though he doesn't mean to.

When a ship arrives from Athens, Ariadne meets Theseus, a young man near her age. Since he is not from Krete, he doesn't know their religion or their way of life, and so he is not afraid to speak with Ariadne. She comes to enjoy spending time with him and the two become friends. But then Ariadne must take her mother's place much sooner than she thought she would have to, despite the fact it's a position she never really wanted.

Dark of the Moon is a retelling of the myth of the minotaur, but rather than just following the myth exactly, the author imagines what could have really happened to inspire the myth. There isn't much romance, unlike the original story, and the "minotaur" is not a monster, just a severely disabled young man. Since I love historical fiction, I really liked how the author made this story more historical than fantasy. The society she imagined for ancient Krete was violent, but I think realistic for the time period the story is set in. I also enjoyed how the story was told from two perspectives, Ariadne and Theseus, to show both sides of the story. I recommend this book to readers interested in historical fiction or Greek mythology.

Disclosure: Review copy provided by published.

1 comment:

Christina T said...

I wasn't quite sure if I would like this or if I would find it to be more like Starcrossed (Josephine Angelini) which I did not enjoy. I am glad to hear that you liked it and that the author focused on the historical apsect. That gives me hope that I will like this too as I love Greek mythology. Nice review!

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