Sunday, June 10

The Fall of Icarus



There are a few things in life that I find quite perplexing. Prawns for instance, or people that don't cover their mouths when they cough. I just don't understand how we have got so far along the evolutionary ladder with them still hanging around. Apropos of that, when I first met Sam, he would say things to me like, "my dad has six Golden Retrievers". To which I would say, 'ok great'. Then he would say, "kidding". To which I probably said...'fine then'. This book is both Sam and Prawns.

I promise you're not reading the slow decline of my mental capacity, I promise this is leading to a point. Like Elle Woods talking about hair care in court, you just need to stick with me.

I'm trying to build a picture of a kind of chaotic randomness without purpose that you can't seem to process in any other way than to just accept it. It's that feeling of: this is so weird and unbelievable that I can only keep going.

Just to set the tone, the title is The Fall of Icarus, and he's in it for a grand total of two sentences. There is a longer segment about the various ways people can fail to stop a wild boar than there is about the titular character. The only way you would remember what you're reading is that every now and then someone will be turned into a bird by a vengeful/benevolent/benign/tyrannical god and you go 'ah, yes. Icarus was in this'.

That's not to say it's not a great book, because it is. There's just a lot going on. If you glaze over while reading at any point then half a page later whoever you were reading about is long gone, and could just as likely be dead as suddenly a goat.

There are of course many retellings of Greek myths and legends out there and the fact that this one is pocket sized does not come without cost. Nine different things can be happening in quick succession which at times feels like you're being beaten over the head by a lightning rod. That being said, if you're someone like me that always likes to wiki the plot of a movie before deciding if I want to watch, this hyper-abridged Greek Megamix could be just what the doctor ordered. Better that than being turned into a fish and having your eyes pecked out, which seems to be the next most prescribed order of the day.

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