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Lost in the Labyrinth: 03/01/19

Lost in the Labyrinth

Lost in the Labyrinth by Patrice Kindl is a retelling of the story of the Labyrinth of Minos from Princess Xenodice's point of view. It begins with the death of Ariadne after having helped Theseus survive the Labyrinth.

All of this is recounted by her younger sister who in modern day reckoning would a tween or middle schooler. Her testimony is written in a stilted, melodramatic language that I think is supposed to sound both regal and tragic. It fails utterly at both.

I suppose the idea was to have the freedom to rework the story however one wanted by picking a minor daughter of King Minos. She is literally known just for being the sister of Ariadne and a half sister of Asterion (the Minotaur).

For a better, more character driven retelling, please see Bull by David Elliott (2017).

Removing the minotaur as the main focus, moves the story down midway between horror and realistic fiction. It's a failed attempt to be literary. By moving away from someone who has the most to lose (freedom in the case of Asterion) or one's life (in the case of Theseus or Ariadne) to a privileged secondhand narrator, there is no drama. It might as well be a fictionalized "what I did on my summer vacation" type report read by a girl who has bored herself by writing it.

Two stars

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