The Strongbox

Sasha Dugdale


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Carcanet Press Ltd
30 May 2024
ISBN: 9781800174085
88 pages

From the publisher

'It began with the sun
appearing over the plane wing
supernatural orange
                                      but no light'

The Strongbox opens with the abduction of a woman to a foreign land and ends with the Rape of Europa.

Drawing in elements of Greek mythology, epic literature and recent history, this protean work gives shape to a cast of characters both ancient and modern, as they flit in and out of tales, their voices overlapping and interacting.

An unnamed girl is persuaded to leave behind her country and her childhood and travel to a warzone. Helen of Sparta, already trapped behind the walls of Ilium, is plagued by dreams about the coming conflict. Gods continue their manipulations, while mortals persist in defying the will of their gods.

Through a series of interconnected scenes and dialogues this singular work traces the role of myth in shaping our accounts of both history and contemporary events.