Livy at Shelves of Starlight is hosting the Women in Myth-A-Thon readathon during March. For the prompt “Medusa,” I read Athena’s Child by Hannah Lynn.
When Medusa is a young woman, she dedicated her life to serving the Goddess Athena. She was a priestess in the Temple of Athena until Poseidon sexually assaults her in the temple. When Athena discovered that one of her priestesses was fornicating in the temple, she is enraged and punishes Medusa. Athena does not believe that Medusa was attacked. She blames Medusa for seducing Poseidon and turns her into a monster.
After her transformation, Medusa turns anyone who makes eye contact into stone. She also has a headful of snakes, who force her eyes open when she is reluctant to look at someone. The snakes aren’t under her control. They are part of her but don’t have any love for her.
Athena is much less trustworthy than in most stories about her. She supports Perseus in his quest but she has ulterior motives. The story about Medusa that she tells Perseus is definitely not the truth. I wonder why she didn’t listen to Medusa. Athena could have asked Zeus to think of a punishment for Poseidon. It could have been a different ending for Medusa.
Medusa flees to an island with her sisters, who are also hideous creatures. They spend their time killing soldiers who are sent to kill the three sisters. When Perseus arrives, Medusa sacrifices herself for his cause. In this story, his cause is to kill his soon-to-be stepfather. She doesn’t seem evil. I think she is tired of being a monster.
If you are interested in Mythology, then you will probably enjoy Athena’s Child. Check out the link below, to find out more about the Women in Myth-A-Thon.
The snakes on Medusa’s head won’t enjoy this book because they don’t like anything that is good.