- The Good: Short, but definitely not sweet (in a good way)
- The Bad: I wish it were longer!
- The Literary: Modern reinterpretation of a classic myth
In ancient Greece, accomplished marble sculptor Pygmalion completes his masterpiece of a realistic, beautiful woman. He adores her and finds her superior to all the women of the streets. When a goddess blesses Pygmalion and gives his sculpture the gift of life, he’s surprised when his sculpture Galatea has desires of her own. To keep her contained, Pygmalion places Galatea under the constant supervision of doctors and nurses because of her tendency to exaggerate.
This little book accomplishes a lot in such a short story. Galatea is made of stone, beautiful, pure, docile, and mute to her creator, representative of the perfect woman, but her story is not romantic. This is a feminist retelling of a Greek myth, a la the recent success of Miller’s Circe. Themes of abuse, control, and oppression fill this modern adaptation, all leading up to my favorite part—revenge!
I would have loved more exploration of themes about ownership and the creation of non-human beings, since it could be argued that this myth is a precursor for Pinocchio or even Frankenstein, in addition to the commonly noted Pygmalion and My Fair Lady.
Highly recommended for those that enjoy modern retellings of classic myths, especially with a twist of feminism!