One of the most famous stories of Greek mythology told from the female point of view.

“Ariadne” is the representation of how women went through despair and frustration even in mythology, as depicted in her first novel by the Englishwoman Jennifer Saint

She grew up reading ancient Greek mythology and from that moment on it seemed that her path was set. Interested in writing, she showed her fascination for the stories behind the myths in her first novel, which she titled Ariadne, a work in which she revisits the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur, but from a female perspective.

The English writer, Jennifer Saint, was able to portray in her first novel her passion for mythology and, at the same time, her ability to capture the essence of the characters and place the classic stories under a fresh and modern look.

“Ariadne” by Jennifer Saint (2021)

"Ariadne" by Jennifer Saint

“Ariadne” by Jennifer Saint (2021)

“I am Ariadne, princess of Crete, though my story takes us far away from the rocky shores of my home. My father, Minos, liked to tell me the story of how by his blameless moral conduct, he won Megara, the submission of Athens and the opportunity to sow example of his ruthless judgment.” (Taken from Ariadne)

This is how Jennifer Saint begins this work, introducing Ariadne, the gaze under which the story will be woven, in the first person. There she tells us how she grows up surrounded by love, but also by the terror generated by a horrendous labyrinth in which her brother lives, the Minotaur, a monster that is used by her father, Minos, to show his power.

On the other side is his mother, Phaedra, who is strong enough to treat her son, the Minotaur, as just another person and not as the monster he is in the eyes of everyone else, who asks for sacrifices every year in order to continue living. Here the figures of his father and mother are disfigured in Ariadne’s eyes.

As if hope wanted to find a place in this story, the author introduces us to Theseus, the prince of Athens, who arrives on the island of Crete with a single purpose: to defeat the great beast. Ariadne falls almost surrendered at his feet and decides to help him in this mission, which, by the way, will also help her find freedom.

Far from being a pink love story without problems, Ariadna is the sample of the transit between the darkest emotions of life; the author portrays aspects such as anger, exasperation, frustration and constant despair that the women of the island live, particularly Ariadna and her mother. This will be fundamental throughout the novel, in which it is evident that women occupy no other place than that of being considered an object dominated by men.

The feminine perspective with which Jennifer Saint treats not only the story, but also her characters, allows to show the importance of nurturing sisterhood, that magic in the help between women that will be woven mainly between Ariadna and her mother.

Readers will find it difficult not to connect with Ariadne’s character, but also with the others, due to the author’s sensitive treatment of each figure that appears in her work, as she tells us how women are taught to live the conflict and nurture it, how they take on guilt that has been imposed on them and how they come to be condemned by repression without the opportunity to utter a word.

  • About the author: Jennifer Saint

♦ She was born in England.

♦ She is an author and an inveterate enthusiast for ancient Greek mythology.

♦ She studied Classical Literature at King’s College London.

♦ She has served as an English teacher in high schools from which she instilled a love of literature.

♦ The novel Ariadne is her first book.

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