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Dark of the Moon

3.21  ·  Rating details ·  819 ratings  ·  161 reviews

Ariadne is destined to become a goddess of the moon. She leads a lonely life, filled with hours of rigorous training by stern priestesses. Her former friends no longer dare to look at her, much less speak to her. All that she has left are her mother and her beloved, misshapen brother Asterion, who must be held captive below the palace for his own safety.

So when a ship arr

Hardcover, 310 pages
Published September 20th 2011 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published September 2011)
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Average rating 3.21  · 
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 ·  819 ratings  ·  161 reviews

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Jul 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: not those in search of the next YA PNR: Greek style
Recommended to Tatiana by: Kirkus
If you expect Dark of the Moon to be just another Greek mythology-inspired paranormal YA romance, look elsewhere. If you are looking for a novel based on a familiar myth but that turns this myth on its head and re-imagines it in the most unexpected but realistic way, you might have hit a jackpot here.

Traditionally, the myth of the Minotaur is a pretty straight forward tale that is mostly known for Cretan Princess Ariadne's passionate love for Theseus. She helps her imprisoned enemy to defeat her
Oct 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Review originally posted on The Book Smugglers Here

Before I say anything else let me just get something off my chest: I loved this book. It is abso-freaking-lutely brilliant and smart and it really re-energised me with such book-excitement the way that only Totally Awesome Books can.

Dark of the Moon is a reimagining of the Greek myth of Theseus, Ariadne and the Minotaur. In Greek mythology, Theseus is a founding-hero of Athens whose adventures before becoming King included the slaying of the inf
Mar 08, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: kindle, arc
Received from: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (Publisher)
Received Via:

The Dark of the Moon asks the question,what if the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur was one big misinterpretation?

Ariadne is dealing with her loneliness of being one who is destined to become a goddess. Being a person people fear, she is left with only her mother and misshapen bother for company. That is until a ship arrives carrying the tributes from Athens. Including a prince, who doesn't seem to fear
This book offers an interesting take on the Ariadne, Theseus and Minotaur myth!
Instead of portraying Ariadne as a love torn princess who gives up everything to help Theseus fight the Minotaur, she is a high priestess devoted to the Goddess during the last days when the island of Crete was a matriarchal society. Theseus, instead of being the jerk who abandons Ariadne after she's helped him, is more complex. He's one of many of the Athenian king's illegitimate sons who is basically given to Minos
Creative re-telling lures readers back to ancient Greece

Tracy Barrett's Dark of the Moon lures readers back to the time of ancient Greece. On Krete, Ariadne has spent her whole life being trained to be she who will be Goddess. Her only true companions are her mother, the current Goddess, and her malformed brother, Asterion, who is imprisoned beneath the palace due to his unintentionally violent ways. When a tribute ship of slaves arrives from Athens and delivers Theseus, the son of a king, Ariad
Cait S
Jan 30, 2019 rated it liked it
An interesting, yet slightly confusing take on this myth. I both enjoyed it and also got bogged down in trying to understand all of it. I would give it a try if you enjoy mythology retellings though and I do plan to read more by this author some day.
Mar 28, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-i-own, reviews
The myth of the minotaur has never been told like this. In fact, most of the mythological characters and creatures that show up in Dark of the Moon are turned on their head, their heroic deeds or misdeeds twisted into human feats and explained. Filled with vivid descriptions of the setting and a rich and thriving new culture, Dark of the Moon is equal parts horrifying and beautiful.

Switching narrators from Ariadne to Theseus, the reader gets to see how fate conspired to make their paths cross. A
Myra Sullivan
Aug 06, 2011 rated it did not like it
Ariadne is She-Who-Will-Be-Goddess. Because of this, she can't talk to other girls her age or ever lead a normal life. Her day is filled with memorizing various rituals and constant lessons on how to be a priestess. Her only true friend is Asterion, her brother, who lives underneath the palace away from everyone else. That is, until Theseus arrives. Theseus is the son of the king of Athens, and he's different from anyone Ariadne's ever met. They soon become friends, and could maybe even turn int ...more
usagi ☆ミ
There’s nothing I love better than retelling old myths and fairy tales, guys. I think you know this by now. And there’s nothing I love MORE than when it’s done right.

The idea of Ariadne as the daughter of Minos and a priestess (also known here as “Goddess-to-be”) is a really fascinating spin on the old tale, along with Minotauros as her brother having to be kept underground because he’s developmentally delayed/a dangerous to others is controversial to be sure, but it all works really well. This
Tabitha Olson
Jul 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
After reading the above summary, I couldn’t wait to read this book. The potential for twists and turns bubbles on the surface of the story, and I wasn’t disappointed. It’s rife with conflict from beginning to end, the pacing is spot on, and the characters so absorbing that I could not put this book down.

This is the perfect example of taking a well-known tale and turning it into something new, while still remaining true to the original roots. It’s clear the author knew the myth inside and out, a
Aug 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
Everything thinks they've heard the Greek myth of Theseus, Ariadne, the Minotaur and the labyrinth. At least, until you've read Dark of the Moon. In this unique historical novel, author Tracy Barrett explores an alternative take on the myth, centered on a young Ariadne who's trying to accept her destiny as the future physical presence of the Goddess her people worships.

As She-Who-Would-Be-Goddess, Ariadne has led an isolated life on the island of Krete, training much of her life as a priestess,
A well written and interesting retelling of the Minotaur myth. Barrett's writing makes you get invested in the characters and you get swept up in the drama that unfolds.

I did like the story, and I appreciate how she took the legend and made it different, while still pulling elements from the original story.

However, the ending felt a little anti-climatic. The character arcs wrap up very quickly, and I wish that there would've been more time for that. The "antagonists" also doesn't appear to get
Dark Faerie Tales
Apr 10, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed-by-emmy
Review Courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: Good story for people who like mythology! This novel retells Theseus’s myth in a way that’s historically plausible, and brings the ancient world of Krete alive to do it.

Opening Sentence: It isn’t true what they say about my brother–that he ate those children.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Barrett’s novel weaves a more realistic, historically plausible tale of the Minotaur, she wrote it well and grounded everything in an ancient context. As an obsessive m
Aug 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
"It isn't true what they say about my brother - that he ate those children. He never did; he didn't even meant to hurt them. He wept as he held out their broken bodies, his soft brown eyes pleading with me to fix them, the way I always fixed his dolls and toys.

Tonight is the new moon and I dance."

With these words opens Dark of The Moon by Tracy Barrett, a wonderfully realistic and emotionally riveting retelling of the Minotaur myth. Those with inquiring minds, interested in discovering what actu
Brandy Painter
Apr 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
Originally posted here.

The myth of the labyrinth and the minotaur has always been a favorite of mine, which is why it is embarrassing to admit that I have never read The King Must Die by Mary Renault. It is, after all, supposed to be the quintessential novelization of Theseus. I think I have built my expectations of it so high I'm afraid to read it in case it doesn't live up. I did intend to read it before I read Dark of the Moon by Tracy Barrett., but then I saw Dark of the Moon sitting so enti
Mar 08, 2011 rated it really liked it
I didn't know much about this book before starting other than that it was sort of a retelling of the Greek myth about Theseus and the Minotaur's Labyrinth. Thus I struggled in the beginning when I read this boring girl's whiny monologue about her difficulties as She-Who-Will-Be-Goddess and her fears about the time when she takes her mother's place as She-Who-Is-Goddess. Who was this girl? (Ariadne) Why did I have to learn about her confusing religion? Did the religious figures govern the country ...more
Aug 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
Barrett does a great job on this retelling of the Greek mytho of the Minotaur. It is interesting and has some new twists that are fun. It was a fast and easy read so perfect for the summer!

Ariadne is a soon-to-be goddess. She is very isolated on Crete until a ship from Athens shows up led by Theseus. Theseus is not there to deliver a sacrifice however. He is there to kill the Minotaur. In this story, the Minotaur is a disfigured and very crazy man that is only saved by who his parents are (he al
Amy Jacobs
Oct 04, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: books-i-own
Since I never really paid any attention in school when they were discussing Greek mythology, I wasn't too sure what to expect in Dark of the Moon. It is based on the Greek myth of Theseus, Ariadne, the Minotaur and the labyrinth. Now since none of the myth was familiar to me, I knew this would be something fresh for me to read.

I really had a hard time getting into this book. It begins rather slowly and had an overabundance of narrative dialogue that was a little repetitive at times. It didn't re
Sep 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Last year I read and fell in love with KING OF ITHAKA (read my review here) which was so much different than a retelling of a myth. And this is what I loved about it. There's something about taking the myths and twisting them up that hits the right note for me. Like this newest one from Tracy Barrett...

It's funny because not too long ago I read a fabulous article theorizing about the myth of the minotaur and what it really might have been. I mean, sure, you can hold onto the belief that there re
Ash (essentiallybooks)
Dark of the Moon had so much potential, but it fell flat for me. Barrett is a good writer (I mean, look at the prologue; that was amazing), yet this story felt hollow. This book is like a really good draft that needs to be fleshed out.

While this is the myth of the minotaur retold, it barely featured him at all. There was little development of his character, while I would've liked to see more interaction between him and Ariadne. The story didn't excite me, which is what I look for in books (wheth
Dark of the Moon was a brilliantly written book. It was a retelling of Theseus and the Minotaur. The characters had depth and I could actually relate to them and had genuine interest in their well being. It felt a little bit more like it should have been the story of the Minotaur’s sister, since that’s really who was high lighted, but the way the author merged her new ideas with old mythology was done very well.

This book had no love story, no insta love no love triangle. It was really very refre
Savannah (Books With Bite)
I didn't really enjoy this book. I think what caught me off guard is the point of view switching. It wasn't smooth and I confused very quickly. I did how ever enjoy the characters. All of them are very strong and very aggressive. They all have a destiny that they follow and are determined to make it through till the very end.

I also like how the book is based get culture such a Greece. There were awesome names of many people, even the story line is filled with lots of drama, action, fighting, et
Jun 05, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Different twist on the Theseus/Ariadne myth. It made for a plausible story.
lexi  *✭˚・゚✧*・゚
Petro Kacur
Jan 28, 2021 rated it liked it
I found so much interesting in the approach to the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur as reimagined by Tracy Barrett in this "young adult" title. She has taken the fundamental elements of the myth and upturned them all - Theseus's heroic exploits on route to Athens, his welcoming as beloved son by King Aegeus, the nature of the Minotaur as beast and the love story with Ariadne. The story has made me think more deeply about the pliability of myths and how fluid interpretation can result in a deeper ...more
Audrey Deel
Dec 29, 2017 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
I loved this book. It doesn't take much for anything involved with ancient Greece, or Greek mythology for me to like it, but this one stood out as something different. I was expecting a telling of the love story between Theseus and Ariadne.

This is not that at all. And honestly, I loved that. Instead it was two characters that shared a bond. They certainly care for each other, but its not love. And it was totally believable.

I rooted for both characters. For Ariadne, who struggled to prove herse
May 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Exactly what I needed

So I read Anna of Byzantium in middle school and remember really loving it. But Dark of the Moon is so much more complex than that—-it seriously takes a look at known rituals and culture and shows how the myth of the Minotaur really came to be.

This writing is wonderful and truly what historical fiction should be. It’s a well researched, inventive examination of stories we already know from school. It’s deeply expressive and cinematic and just really enjoyable. Plus it got me
Apr 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
This book was not my favorite- it was slow and I didn’t really feel connected to the characters. I know it’s a retelling of a Greek mythology story, but it was pretty morbid. I don’t think I would have finished it if it wasn’t the only book I had on a longer car ride.
Rachel Williams
Mar 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An amazing spin on the greek myth of the minotaur. 5 stars, all the way.
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Tracy Barrett has written more than twenty books for children and young adults. She’s much too interested in too many things to stick to one genre, and has published nonfiction as well as historical fiction, mysteries, fantasy, time travel, myth and fairy-tale retellings, and contemporary realistic novels. She knows more about ancient Greece and Rome and the European Middle Ages than anyone really ...more

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