Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Review: The Lost Sisterhood by Anne Fortier
Release date: March 11, 2014
Philologist Diana Morgan has always had a fascination with the legend of the Amazons from the time her supposedly mentally ill grandmother claimed to be one and even gave her a notebook with a dictionary of a strange, unknown language. So when Diana is approached by a mysterious man with a photograph of an archaeological site covered in the very same language (which I suspect is supposed to be the language from the Phaistos Disc), she can’t resist the offer to investigate.
Running parallel to her story is that of Myrina, a young woman struggling to survive within classic tales from Greek mythology and Homer's Troy, who will stop at nothing to protect her younger sister. But Fortier's retelling is anything but traditional and manages to put realistic spins on The Iliad that link several elements from history and mythology. Though the premise of novels like this can sometimes be a little far-fetched, this was one of the more believable ones.
I love a good treasure hunt/archaeological mystery and the fact that it was based on Greek mythology intrigued me more. From the time I was 12, when I first learned about classical mythology, I've been fascinated by it so this was right up my alley. There's lots of action and adventure as Diana follows clues taking her in Myrina's footsteps across the Mediterranean but the character development isn't neglected either and the personal journeys that both the main characters go through make it difficult to put down. 608 pages may be longish for an action novel but they flew by. The feminism could be a little heavy handed at times but that's to be expected from a novel about a sisterhood and it's important to remember the brutal world the Amazons lived in and particularly how women were often treated.
While Diana's chapters are told in first person, Myrina's are told in third person, which is not normally something I'm fond of but it works well to distinguish the different time periods. Despite being split over thousands of years, the book flows between the two worlds effortlessly.