Ksenia's Reviews > Alcestis

Alcestis by Katharine Beutner
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Sep 02, 10

Read in February, 2010

So the book follows this myth very closely. I wasn’t totally familiar with the original myth so I had to go and read about it. The part that the author focuses on during the last part of the book is Alcestis’ time in the Underworld. Now, I was wholly enjoying everything about the book while I was reading it, but when it got to those three days spent in the Underworld, I felt a slight disconnect. But first….

I really liked the fact that the gods were part of the mortal world, and that they weren’t just some deities that people worshiped and you never got to see them as being living and breathing beings. Here, the gods are real. Alcestis’ grandfather is actually Poseidon and the god that Admetus loves so much? That would be Apollo. And who takes Alcestis down to the underworld? That would be Hermes.

The author did a wonderful job of describing the Underworld by having Alcestis explore it while trying to find her sister that she loved, and who had died years earlier.

So what was my disconnect in the Underworld? Mainly it was the relationship between Alcestis and Persephone. I just didn’t get it. I didn’t see it. I couldn’t fathom why Alcestis would fall in love with the Queen of the Underworld. Was I missing something? Cause I thought there was something missing there! Persephone came off as very manipulating at times. I could understand why she was very hesitant to tell Alcestis where her sister was (since she knew that the sister would never recognize Alcestis, and it would be too painful for Alcestis to witness). But that still didn’t make me like her.

And Hades? I couldn’t get him either. It was like he was Persephone’s lapdog or something. And not the all-powerful Lord of the Underworld I had imagined him to be.

Despite this, if the author does write another book though, I think I will check it out anyway, especially if it deals with another little-known myth.
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