‘Elektra’ Book Review

The book ‘Elektra’ tells the story of three women who are all seemingly connected by one war. Clytemnestra is betrayed by her husband in the worst way possible. Cassandra can see visions of what will happen to her city but no one will believe her. Elektra longs for her father to return from war and have her life go back to the way it was before Helen was stolen and the Trojan War.

The characters here are very complex and I am sure have a lot more depth than the original Greek stories that they took part in. Clytemnestra was my favorite. She is a woman, a queen, who is having to deal with the grief of a terrible action committed by the one person who should never have done it. Cassandra, she was unnecessary to this story and I think it would have been no different without her, just the story of a mother and a daughter. Nevertheless, Cassandra’s story was of a woman who is a black sheep and trying to find where she belongs in the world. Elektra is the youngest daughter of Agamemnon and Clytemnestra, she still holds the innocence of thinking that her father can do no wrong and then does not have the understanding of her mother’s depression, therefore causing resentment to grow in her.

Jennifer Saint had a unique way of doing her world building. We progressively learned more about the world as the characters became more equipped in their roles. In a way, learning as the characters learned.

The narrative had beautiful writing. The dialogue was good but it did not blow me away in any sense. Still it was miles better than most Greek mythology retellings that I have read in the past. ‘Elektra’, was fast paced and easy to follow.

Where the novel lacked was the plot. You can tell that Jennifer Saint was mainly focused on the character work and the writing. Those things turned out great and I am usually someone who prefers character driven novels over plot but this just proved that I need a little bit more action in my plot for me to enjoy the book. This is a slow moving and barely there plot.

The characters here are very complex and I am sure have a lot more depth than the original Greek stories that they took part in. Jennifer Saint had a unique way of doing her world building.The narrative had beautiful writing. ‘Elektra’, was fast paced and easy to follow. Where the novel lacked was the plot. This is a slow moving and barely there plot. Out of all the Greek mythology retellings that I have read, this has been the best. This is an average read and I would still recommend it.

3 out 5 stars.

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