Children of Icarus by Caighlan Smith
Two girls, best friends since childhood, Clara, always the star of the show and her meek little friend in the shadows. When they’re both chosen to enter the maze they find out their world was a lie.
- Interesting take on Greek Mythology, mainly the Icarus tale
- Unusual main character, not like a usual protagonist
- Made me feel uncomfortable
- Bit predictable
Ok, I’m gonna start out by saying I wasn’t a big fan. I liked a lot of elements in it and I think it was well put together but it wasn’t what I was expecting and it was a bit predictable. It also made me feel a bit uncomfortable towards the middle, while that does show the author is good at making me feel like that, I generally try to avoid books that do that.
The main character was one of those elements that I did like. She wasn’t your typically main character in that she went beyond shy, a bit of a coward and just week overall. I wanted to say selfish but thinking back I’m not too sure she is. It’s really rare to have a character like that and I really appreciated it. TBH she reminded me a lot of myself when I was 16… hell even a bit now, especially with how she hides her face behind her long hair. That’s something that used I to do a lot, and I’m too scared to cut my hair short in case I ever feel like that again. Smith was really good at showing how much of her character relied and shadowed her best friend, even with regards to her name.
Now, another element I really enjoyed was how the story re-imagined Greek Mythology. I love mythology and the name ‘Icarus’ in the story was what made me read this book. It follows some of the basic ideas of the Icarus story like the whole flying into the sun and a maze being built – though in a different order from the myth. Icarus’ father – Daedalus – has been changed to a woman who’s not related to Icarus but has a similar name – Daedala – but has a similar role. I loved these kind of references to the myths but I could have done without the myths being mixed with angels. I generally I don’t like books that involves angels, the only exception has been those in the Shadowhunters world.
Things I didn’t like to much was it was kind of predicable. I haven’t read it but I can see the similarities with The Maze Runner. A big maze, monsters, children trying to get to the other end among other things. Actually I can see bits of The Hunger Games and Allegiant mixed in there, what with children being chosen at random and there were bits like how the government tried to save divergent from the Allegiant book. It was kind of obvious where it was going since I know those books reasonably well.
There was a bit that made me feel uncomfortably and like I said I generally try to avoid books like that. It was when the people found out one of the main characters secrets. I actually wanted to stop reading since I could see where it was heading… but I didn’t and that’s what matters.
I would have liked a bit more world building. It would have been nice to find where they got all their information about Icarus or how they said the priests would have known when someone got out the maze. The end was clearly leading up to a sequel so maybe they will answer it then. Also the book was set up into three parts – Judge, Jury and Executioner. It wasn’t till I started writing this review that I understood why the parts were called that – yes I know the saying, I mean how they relate. The last one I got as I was reading it, the Jury took a while to get and Judge I think I got as I was writing this sentence, even then I’m not sure I got it. Maybe making it a bit more obvious would have been nice.
Anyway, the book was ok. Not really my thing though I did like some of the elements in it.