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Jennifer Saint Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Ariadne (2021)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Elektra (2022)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Jennifer Siant is a historical fiction writer born in Leeds, The United Kingdom. She grew up reading Greek mythology and was always attracted to the untold stories hidden in myths. For thirteen years, she was a high school teacher and later wrote her first novel, Ariadne. Jennifer lives in Yorkshire, England, with her husband and two children.

Ariadne
Ariadne is a mythological retelling of the ancient Greek myth of Theseus and the Minotaur. The main focus in the novel is an eponymous character, Ariadne, and her younger sister Phaedra who are both the daughters of King Minos. The story begins on Crete island and then follows the background details of the familiar tale of Minotaur in the labyrinth that acts as a catalyst of how the lives of the two sisters go on in the following years.

Ariadne, the princess of Crete, grew up greeting the dawn from the beautiful dancing floor and listening to the stories about gods and heroes.

The two sisters grew up listening to the hoofbeats and bellows of the Minotaur echo from the Labyrinth below the palace. Theseus is a young and charming prince of Athens who comes to Ariadne’s father’s kingdom. He’s on a mission of destroying the dreaded Minotaur, Ariadne’s brother and eater of human flesh. The two sisters fall under his spell, and Ariadne falls in love with him.

As a sign of tribute to the Crete kingdom, the twelve souls of Athens are required yearly as a blood sacrifice to the Minotaur, and Theseus has come to bring this to an end. To accomplish his mission, he need help from Ariadne and her sister Phaedra, and the girls realize the consequences when it’s too late.
Ariadne sees his green eyes as an escape instead of a threat. She ends up disobeying the gods, betraying her family, and risking everything she loved to help Theseus kill the Minotaur, who’s her brother and a monster who demands blood sacrifice. Will this head up to a happy ending for her?

Ariadne is left on an island to die and later saved by Dionysus, another Olympian god. At the same time, back in Crete, Phaedra is being taken away by Theseus to become his wife without knowing what happened to her sister.

This story of Theseus and the Minotaur is well told and Ariadne’s section is mediocrely described. Theseus glory in his encounter with the feared Minotaur would not have existed without her. If it were not for Ariadne’s kindness and naïve hope, there would have been nothing left for Theseus to exploit.
The book begins at a slow pace and is twisted with the rising flames of treacherous men. Theseus miscarriages against the nurturing and beautiful Ariadne didn’t deserve such pain. The story then picks up quickly after she is visited by the Olympian God, Dionysus, on the island of Naxos and just after their wedding.

Ariadne is happy, and that’s what matters to her the most. Later after a long-awaited visit from her sister, her domestic happiness begins to fade away, and she finds it hard denying herself some of the things that helped her stay in peace for years. It’s a story where women are the forgotten heroes and champions whose sacrifice and courage have been put under feet by men and their pride. They’ve been disregarded by those who convince people it is easier to forget.
Ariadne is a compelling character who appears to fall into the shadows of the shine of Theseus in the original Minotaur myth. She helps him escape while betraying her family for this man yet, in the end, doesn’t get the glory she deserves just because she is a woman. Jennifer Saint has given her the voice and opinion needed as she shows her inner struggles with the decisions and the results of her actions.

The author also shares her complicated relationship with her mother Pasiphae, who is broken not because of her actions but by the vengeful Gods who want to destroy her husband and sister Phaedra. When Phaedra is first introduced, she is a spirited girl helping Ariadne release Theseus and then left behind. She has to work hard in everything she does to gain some power and a sense of belonging in her world.

Ariadne is a fascinating book on how gods dominated the earth and never tolerated humans who attempted to go against their schemes even if humans suffered a lot of loss. She is caught up in the web, just like her sister.

The story is told from Ariadne’s and her sister’s point of view. Ariadne’s story reminds that even the men who claim to love ladies can hurt them even when they don’t mean to, and women are forced to bear with the situation.
Elektra
The story is about the House of Atreus that is believed to be cursed. The bloodline is covered in a generational cycle of vengeance and violence. This novel is a story of three women and their fates that are tied to this curse.

Clytemnestra is the sister of Helen, the wife of Agamemnon, and her hopes of stopping the curse are ended when her sister is taken to Troy by Paris. Her husband forms a great army against them and is determined to win no matter its costs.

The second lady is Cassandra, princess of Troy who’s cursed by Apollo to see the future but never to be believed by people when she speaks of it. Her knowledge is powerless and she’s afraid that the city will fall because they don’t believe in her predictions.

The third woman is Elektra, the youngest daughter of Clytemnestra and Agamemnon. She’s horrified by the bloodletting of her kin, but she cannot escape the curse and wonders if her own destiny is also bound to violence and vengeance. Together with her brother Orestes, she avenges her father’s death by killing their mother.

The story has been tackled by many tragedies like the Aeschylus and Euripides and it’s refreshing how Jennifer Saint handles the complex themes in the novel.

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