“This particular monster is assaulted, abused and vilified. And yet, as the story is always told, she is the one you should fear. She is the monster. We’ll see about that.”
Rating: 4 stars
Release date: 15/09/2022
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Author: Natalie Haynes
CW: Rape, death, murder, injury, war
‘So to mortal men, we are monsters. Because of our flight, our strength. They fear us, so they call us monsters.’
Medusa is the sole mortal in a family of gods. Growing up with her Gorgon sisters, she begins to realize that she is the only one who experiences change, the only one who can be hurt. And her mortal lifespan gives her an urgency that her family will never know.
When the sea god Poseidon commits an unforgivable act in the temple of Athene, the goddess takes her revenge where she can – and Medusa is changed forever. Writhing snakes replace her hair, and her gaze now turns any living creature to stone. The power cannot be controlled: Medusa can look at nothing without destroying it. She is condemned to a life of shadows and darkness.
Until Perseus embarks upon a quest to fetch the head of a Gorgon…
In Stone Blind, Natalie Haynes – the Women’s Prize-shortlisted author of A Thousand Ships – brings the infamous Medusa to life as you have never seen her before…
Natalie Haynes is one of my favourite writers to revisit Greek mythology. She makes them accessible and easy to read, and often humorous too. She also takes such a vast set of characters and uses them to explore a single story.
I love the story of Medusa, so I was really excited to see Natalie Haynes put her twist on it. I didn’t realise how many stories could be linked to Medusa’s though. Every time she introduced a tale or characters that seemed unconnected, it was just a waiting game – why were three sisters and a snake relevant? why did we need to know about the king of Ethiopia?
I really enjoyed that this book made Medusa human. It really emphasised that she wasn’t just a monster. She had a relationship with her sisters who loved her and she loved back. And she stood up for something she believed in when confronted by Poseidon, even though she was still scared.
I thoroughly enjoyed!