Wednesday, 25 December 2013

The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood

“I suspect she used to flirt with her dog, her mirror, with her comb with her bedpost.”

Margaret Atwood rewrites the Odysseus tale from the perspective of his long suffering (and ridiculously patient) wife. The years that Odysseus was out bedding goddesses, putting off sirens and fighting all manner of supernatural creature, Penelope spent waiting at home for her man like the dutiful wife.

Its hard when your cousin is the most beautiful woman in the world and your mum is a naiad and your father tried to throw you in the ocean as a child. Despite these set backs, Penelope proves her inner metal, utilising her favourite maids as an espionage ring to gain information that assists in putting off any would be suitors (after her money and status).

It is these same servants that pay the ultimate sacrifice and even in the after life Penelope is haunted.

This is a really interesting tale and one that I thoroughly enjoyed.

5 out of 5 ancient tales rebooted are intriguing.

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