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I devoured this book in one sitting, which is such a great bonus to verse novels. They're quick but impactful, easy to read yet have the potential for so much fun and intrigue. This was definitely a verse novel done right.

This is a retelling of the Theseus and the Minotaur myth, but with a lot more background information about the Minotaur, whose real name is Asterion. Asterion is shunned by Minos, king of Crete, who made a deal with Poseidon to get that position; his mother, Pasiphae, loves him, as does his sister, Ariadne, but when his father builds a maze to lock him in and sacrifice people to, there's not much that he can do. So he does what any of us would do: he thinks a lot of angsty thoughts. A lot.

Basically, if you love Greek mythology and you're open to anything genre-wise, this book is an absolute riot. It's told in alternating perspectives from each of those main characters, and by far, Poseidon was my favourite. He's like that kind of well-meaning uncle who gives you money and then lets you go with it and just watches on with a kind of dark glee when you buy things you're not supposed to and get in trouble for it. Everyone has a different form that their poems adhere to which really makes each character's voice distinct, and especially with Ariadne and Pasiphae, I felt that those forms really exemplified them. They felt like their personalities, which is really cool, and a very interesting aspect of verse novels that I hadn't really considered before this.

The myth isn't really retold here - everything you expect to happen still does - but the way David plays with the characters and gives them intriguing back stories and character motivation is so much fun. I did especially love Theseus for being such an absolute asshole. The only reason I take off a star is because I wanted more somehow. I wanted more from either the characters or the myth or something that I just can't put my finger on. It just felt like it moved SO fast that I wanted to slow down and ponder things a bit more.

As I said, this is a quick read, but totally fun and worth the hour it takes to whip through it. I laughed out loud a few times, which I didn't expect going into the book. The characters are witty and intense, funny and sarcastic, and the verse novel format worked so well especially for those clever quips and hilarious commentary from everyone's favourite only-slightly-evil god of the sea.

librarianjessicaboorsma's rating:
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