Daughters of The Labyrinth
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From the publisher
‘An immersive novel, steeped in the history and folklore of Crete: transporting, historically informative story-telling’ Sunday Times
‘A moving, superbly written exploration of a family with dark secrets. Crete itself becomes one of the main characters in the story’ Irish Times, Best Books 2021
This was my home. This harbour and sea. These golden alleys. But the town I grew up in has disappeared.
Broken by the death of her husband, Ri, a successful international artist living in London, returns to her ancestral home of Crete. The Greek island is known for its ancient myth and mass tourism, but when Ri returns she finds a secret, darker history. As the home she left deals with a looming Brexit, and the home she rediscovered grapples with a refugee crisis, Ri confronts her changing identity. Unearthing stories from her family’s past leaves a permanent mark on her understanding of herself, her relationship to her country, and her art.
Lyrical, unsettling and evocative, Daughters of the Labyrinth explores the power of buried memory and the grip of the past on the present, and questions how well we can ever know our own family.
‘Daughters of the Labyrinth is a novel about a daughter’s passionate quest for the truth about what happened to her parents in Crete during the German occupation. It is also a sumptuous and sensuous evocation of Crete itself, its landscape and culture. Ruth Padel’s brings a poet’s eye to this world of great physical beauty and gnarled legacy’ Colm Tóibín