Thursday, October 24, 2013

Daughter of Mythos by Melissa Drake

Daughter of Mythos falls into the category of stories where a seemingly normal teenager has a hidden heritage that makes them a powerful force for good in the world. It is a tried and true story mode and this book does it justice. As a young adult book it is an excellent introduction for a young reader to the genre. It is also quite enjoyable for a long time adult reader of the fantasy genre. There are the expected subplots to these sorts of stories. Some of them end as expected, some of them threw me off my predictions, which I consider an applause worthy feat. Anybody who has done any significant amount of reading or (especially) writing can sympathize with me as to the tendency for stories to no longer be surprising.

Nora Salvatore is a likeable enough girl and we see pretty much everything through her eyes. I do like her mixture of normal, petty teenager worries with the very adult situation that's being thrust on her. Some of the issues that weigh on her mind could have perhaps been explored a little deeply, but I rather expect that that would have resulted in an interruption to the flow of the story as a whole. She is quick to make attachments, despite her past experiences with losing them, marking her as a naturally extroverted person. She is also rather empathic in a very real-world manner rather than anything of a supernatural nature, picking up on moods and attitudes quite often. And I don't feel as if her special skill is at all something overshadowing the rest of the cast.

The world itself is a wonderful mix of fantasy creatures, with it being stated that all of Earth's myths could be traced to Mythos creatures. Given my love of gorgons and Japanese mythology, especially as regards my sympathy for Medusa and Yuki-Onna, I rather hope to see this aspect expanded upon in further volumes. There is also mention of a rival civilization of star-faring technocrats on a nearby planet. Currently the impression of the world is that technology is inherently bad, but I hope to see this become a misunderstanding on the part of the person giving that opinion.

All in all, a good, stand-alone fantasy with a clear lead in to a sequel and possible sci-fi leanings eventually further down in the series.

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