Mar. 26th, 2011

booksofafeather: A book and candlestick, with a feather lying across the pages. (Default)
Short review: This is a rework of the myth of Icarus with beautiful picture spreads. Since it is based on the Greek myth, it can't very too much from the story, which I think many people know: Icarus flies too close to the sun and drowns. Like the myth, this story is all about flying as expressing the sin of pride... trying to be too close to the gods... which I think will bother many winged people, because they think that their flying is not about that, or they think that their flying is about being closer to the spiritual world and that's okay. If you want a version of the myth that has beautiful pictures and some poetic feel, you might like this one, but I don't recommend the story in general... especially for young children as it might make them feel "choosing to follow your dreams and be free will cause you to be hurt" if they long for flight.

Writing: The writing has a good poetic feel. Of course it is based on a story already existing so there is not a lot that's creative here, but Jane Yolen does expand on the story a little bit from what I know about the myth. Unfortunately, that expanding is only more driving home that Daedalus was a proud person and that the gods thought that was bad, which is the point of the story so I can't blame her, but it won't make winged people happy to associate pride with flying in a bad way.

From a winged person's perspective...: The art is really beautiful and realistic, with lots of detail that maybe you only notice the second time, and give a feeling of how amazing it is to fly. The wings really look like wings! The sad part is Icarus... he seems to love the flying for its own reasons and not because he has pride. He flies higher only because it's beautiful to fly and he loves the feeling. But in the end that is what makes him lose his wings. I don't think I know a story that has a more "anti-winged-people" message than that really.

Trigger warnings: None other than the obvious ^^;; The "falling out of the sky" picture is very realistic though.

More thoughts...: Since the story is so simple my thoughts are very simple too... this story just feels against all my spiritual beliefs, that we are meant to fly high and touch the spiritual world. I think that wings and flying are spiritual in many ways. And the myth of Icarus goes quite against that. Of course, your feelings on this story will vary. If you find the myth beautiful then this is a great book ^v^ Personally I don't know how to rate the story, you can't give a rating to a myth really ^^;; The pictures are a five out of five.
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