THE DAWN PALACE by H.M. Hoover

THE DAWN PALACE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A revisionist account of the legendary evil figure--here, portrayed as more sinned against than sinning--from a well-regarded SF author. Hoover presents Medea as less a sorceress than a follower of the old matriarchal religion, predecessor to the Greco-Roman pantheon. Her magic is depicted as advanced knowledge, her spells as skills based on its use. Thus, when Jason arrives in Colchis and Medea is smitten with passion, she engineers his taming of the "bulls of Hephaestus"--actually primitive steam engines that Jason maneuvers with the help of a drug she has given him; the dragon guarding the Golden Fleece is a lava flow. The story follows the myth, but Jason emerges as the villain, with Medea's acts shown as results of his ill treatment. This well-written, evocative narrative serves as a feminist corrective to a traditional legend that, Hoover states in her notes, may have arisen as the result of a propaganda effort by Euripides on behalf of the citizens of Corinth. Johnson's Witch Princess (1967, o.p.) also attempted to rehabilitate Medea's reputation; Hoover's version is especially thoughtful and well worked out.
Pub Date: April 1st, 1988
ISBN: 0525443886
Page count: 262pp
Publisher: Dutton
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 1988




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