Sonderbooks     Book Reviews by Sondra Eklund

More Info from

Rate this Book

Sonderbooks 50
    Previous Book
    Next Book

Young Adult Fiction
        Previous Book
        Next Book
Children's Nonfiction
Children's Fiction
Picture Books

2002 Stand-outs
Five-Star Books
Four-Star Books
Old Favorites
Back Issues
List of Reviews by Title
List of Reviews by Author

Links For Book Lovers

About Me
Contact Me
Post on Bulletin Board

I don't review books I don't like!

*****= An all-time favorite
****  = Outstanding
***    = Above average
**      = Enjoyable
*        = Good, with reservations


***Lost in the Labyrinth

by Patrice Kindl

Reviewed March 29, 2003.
Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, 2002.  194 pages.

I’m a big fan of Patrice Kindl.  Owl in Love is a haunting story of a teenage shape-changer with a crush on her teacher.  Woman in the Wall is a wonderful character study of a shy girl who actually disappears into the walls of her house.  Goose Chase is a delightful twist on a fairy tale.

I wasn’t as crazy about this new book, but it’s not that Patrice Kindl didn’t do an excellent job of writing it.  I simply didn’t like the story as well.  I suppose I’d have to blame the Greeks.

Lost in the Labyrinth is a retelling of the myth of the Minotaur of Crete.  The narrator, Xenodice, is the daughter of Queen Pasiphae of Crete and her husband Minos.  Their palace is a great labyrinth.  Xenodice is in love with Icarus, the beautiful son of the inventor Daedalus.  It turns out that what the Greeks call the Minotaur is actually Xenodice’s half-brother Asterius.  He is the son of Pasiphae and the god “The Great Bull of the Earth.”  He is a bit wild, but Xenodice loves him dearly.  When Theseus of Athens shows up, anyone who knows the myth at all will know that Xenodice is in for some grief, even if she didn’t have the misfortune of being in love with Icarus.

The story is well-told.  I like the twist of telling it from the point of view of the Cretans and how different this version is from that told by the Greeks.  Since this is myth, there’s plenty of violence and treachery, so it’s not the most pleasant of stories.  Still, this is well worth reading, especially for anyone interested in mythology.


Reviews of other books by Patrice Kindl:
Owl in Love
Keeping the Castle
A School for Brides

Copyright © 2003 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved. 
-top of page-