SNAKE DREAMER by Priscilla Galloway

SNAKE DREAMER

Age Range: 12 - 14
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Galloway (Truly Grim Tales, 1995) revisits the Greek myth of Medusa, the Gorgon with the head of snakes, in a page-turning, occasionally convoluted, contemporary fantasy. When there seems to be no reasonable medical explanation for her continued disturbing dreams of snakes, Dusa is whisked off to Greece by herself, to undergo special treatment at the clinic of the mysterious Gordon sisters, Yali and Teno. When she arrives, all other patients have disappeared, and only the strange boy Perse remains. The slow story soon escalates with Dusa’s discovery of the jar that contains the head of Medusa, the very thing the power-hungry Gordon sisters have been searching for, in hopes of reuniting their sister with her body. Dusa doubts their evil intentions, their ability to shift shapes, their real identity (the Gorgons) until she discovers one of their former patients hidden in an attic room. Not without loss, Dusa comes face to face with Medusa in the mirror, confronting her demons and managing an escape. Dusa’s adventure is about recognizing and accepting one’s own inner strength; aspects of the original myth are murky at times, and readers who have grown up with an image of Medusa as hideous monster may have to make a leap to fathom how “victim and killer come together.” Nevertheless, even if some of the symbolism is lost on readers, and certain threads of the myth dangle, Dusa is a credible character all the way through her independent, triumphant finale. (Fiction. 12-14)

Pub Date: May 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-385-32264-X
Page count: 231pp
Publisher: Delacorte
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15th, 1998




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