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CORYDON AND THE ISLAND OF MONSTERS by Tobias Druitt Kirkus Star

CORYDON AND THE ISLAND OF MONSTERS

By Tobias Druitt

Age Range: 11 - 15

Pub Date: Feb. 28th, 2006
ISBN: 0-375-83382-X
Publisher: Knopf

Writing under a pseudonym, a mother-and-son team sets out to view the ancient Greek mythological landscape from a reverse angle in this captivating trilogy opener. The Olympians have been on top for a long time, but their adversaries, the older gods, are stirring. Into this simmering conflict fall young Corydon, a shepherd outcast for having a goat’s foot, and his trio of surrogate mothers. They are the bickering but affectionate gorgons Euryale and Sthenno, who have taken him under their metal-feathered wings, and Medusa—cast here as a smart, snarky single mother carrying Poseidon’s child and transformed by Athena into snake-haired hideousness because of it. Joining a contentious rabble of fellow monsters, this uncommonly mixed family squares off against Perseus, a glib, hunky bully who has raised an invading army with relentless marketing and plenty of help from his dad Zeus. But the climactic battle, capped by Medusa’s heartrending, heroic sacrifice, turns out to be a skirmish in a larger struggle—in which Corydon has some central role to play, if he can but discover what and how. Reading this witty, profoundly sapient take on the old tales will leave readers impatient for the sequels. (Fantasy. 11-15)