Tuesday, June 23, 2020
Review of The Korinniad by A. G. Caggiano
Hilarious romp through the world of Greek mythology
What a fun book! Korinna, a worker in a pottery factory, is about to come of age and, as a virgin of no consequence, is the perfect person to sacrifice to the Monster in the Pit in order to ensure the fertility of the annual crops. She decides to attempt to lose her virginity deliberately and a local priestess finds a way to convince the gods to intervene in her behalf. Athena, Hera, and Apollo are each to provide a man whom Korinna might choose to be her “adelphi-psychi” – her soul-mate. Aphrodite provides one of the Erotes (Cupids in later terminology), whose name is Nikeros, to shoot love arrows at each man so he will become infatuated with Korinna.
So the scene is set for a hilarious and mostly light-hearted romp through the world of the Greek gods. The three Fates start the story in motion, and along the way we meet Ares, Zeus, Poseidon, Hermes, and finally Hades himself. We achieve the requisite visit to the Underworld and it’s an Underworld quite different from any other you’ve ever encountered. Charon is a surprise, and you’ll particularly enjoy the rendition of Hades (the god) and of his hound Cerberus. And I don’t think it’s a spoiler when I say, Korinna does find her adelphi-psychi and they all live happily ever afterward.
The author has a terrific imagination and a light touch (with a few satiric barbs thrown in); I particularly enjoyed the asides where the author argues with her own Muse. If you know a little bit about Greek mythology, you’ll probably appreciate the tale more, but if you want more information, you can always look up the allusions. I would recommend this tale for anyone who wants a spritely, irreverent, and fast-moving fun fest. Just what we all need right now!