I typically don’t participate in blog tours because I don’t like being obligated to give a book a good review. However, when I was reached out to by Jennifer Saint’s team about reviewing her newest release, Elektra: A Novel of the House of Atreus, I was interested. Funnily enough, I also received an ARC of this book from Netgalley. Thankfully, I don’t regret agreeing to review it because this book was really good! Since Elektra is such a new release, I’m going to keep this review spoiler free.
The House of Atreus is cursed. A bloodline tainted by a generational cycle of violence and vengeance. This is the story of three women, their fates inextricably tied to this curse, and the fickle nature of men and gods.
The sister of Helen, wife of Agamemnon – her hopes of averting the curse are dashed when her sister is taken to Troy by the feckless Paris. Her husband raises a great army against them, and determines to win, whatever the cost.
Princess of Troy, and cursed by Apollo to see the future but never to be believed when she speaks of it. She is powerless in her knowledge that the city will fall.
The youngest daughter of Clytemnestra and Agamemnon, Elektra is horrified by the bloodletting of her kin. But, can she escape the curse, or is her own destiny also bound by violence?
If you’ve followed me for any length of time, you’ll know that my two favorite genres are historical fiction and fantasy. All novels about ancient mythology usually appeal to me for that reason so when I saw that Elektra was about a few of the key female figures during the battle of Troy time period, I was ALL about it.
The story is told from three different points of view: Clytemnestra, Cassandra and Elektra. I enjoyed all three for different reasons, but my favorite was Clytemnestra. I felt that she had the most depth. I don’t want to spoil any major plot points but there were many times throughout the book where Clytemnestra had to make hard choices and those choices usually caused major repercussions. Sometimes she did things that weren’t necessarily good or for the best, but her decisions were understandable. She came across as a flawed, but very human, character.
I also really enjoyed Cassandra’s point of view but I wish she would have been in the story more. Her parts were, for the most part, tragic and I so desperately wanted her to find happiness. Unfortunately, like most mythological stories, that didn’t happen.
Elektra was my least favorite character BUT I think she was supposed to be unlikable. Due to tragic events in her life, she became a miserable person. While that’s understandable, it doesn’t make for the most fun character to read about. I didn’t absolutely hate her but I am glad the book wasn’t told solely from her POV.
Other than Elektra, my only complaints with this book were with the pacing and lack of depth. I found it difficult to keep up with the time period because there would be jumps of like ten years that weren’t made obvious. This wasn’t a big deal, just something I noticed. I also would have liked to have seen more in-depth relationships because most felt very surface level. Again, this isn’t a big deal or something that made me dislike the story; it’s simply what I wish could have been different.
Jennifer Saint is a new to me author and one I will definitely be reading more from in the future. You can see her website and find out more info about her books here. Elektra: A Novel of the House of Atreus has been released so if you’re a fan of mythology, pick it up! Thanks for reading and have a great day!