longlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2023
Published:15th Sep '22
Available for immediate dispatch.
Natalie Haynes brings life to the infamous myth of Medusa with a feminist retelling unlike any other . . .
Natalie Haynes, Women's Prize-shortlisted author of A Thousand Ships, brings life to the infamous myth of Medusa with a heartbreaking, feminist retelling unlike any other.
** Longlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2023 **
In Stone Blind, the instant Sunday Times bestseller, Natalie Haynes brings the infamous Medusa to life as you have never seen her before.
'Witty, gripping, ruthless' - Margaret Atwood via Twitter
'Beautiful and moving' - Neil Gaiman via Twitter
'So to mortal men, we are monsters. Because of our flight, our strength. They fear us, so they call us monsters.’
Medusa is the sole mortal in a family of gods. Growing up with her Gorgon sisters, she begins to realize that she is the only one who experiences change, the only one who can be hurt. And her mortal lifespan gives her an urgency that her family will never know.
When the sea god Poseidon commits an unforgivable act in the temple of Athene, the goddess takes her revenge where she can – and Medusa is changed forever. Writhing snakes replace her hair, and her gaze now turns any living creature to stone. The power cannot be controlled: Medusa can look at nothing without destroying it. She is condemned to a life of shadows and darkness.
Until Perseus embarks upon a quest to fetch the head of a Gorgon . . .
Praise for Natalie Haynes, the Women’s Prize-shortlisted author of A Thousand Ships:
‘With her trademark passion, wit, and fierce feminism… her thoughtful portraits will linger with you long after the book is finished’ - Madeline Miller, author of The Song of Achilles and Circe
‘Haynes combines a wide-ranging knowledge of the original myths with a gift for compelling narrative’ - The Times
‘Natalie Haynes is both a witty and an erudite guide. She wears her extensive learning lightly and deftly drags the Classics into the modern world’ - Kate Atkinson, author of Life After Life
‘Haynes is master of her trade . . . She succeeds in breathing warm life into some of our oldest stories’ - Telegraph
‘Haynes is the nation’s greatest muse’ - Adam Rutherford
Witty, gripping, ruthless -- Margaret Atwood via Twitter
Beautiful and moving -- Neil Gaiman via Twitter
The rollicking narrative voice that energises Stone Blind . . . is a voice that feels at once bitingly (post)modern and filled with old wisdom . . . The Gorgon’s head will take on a new and powerful resonance as a symbol of the way stories can be warped by time. Stone Blind acts as a brilliant and compellingly readable corrective. * The Observer *
Stone Blind is an exceptionally powerful retelling of Medusa's story, an emotional gut punch of a novel. Haynes brilliantly pulls off the feat of seamlessly alternating humour and heartbreak, creating characters that stay with you long after the novel's end. It is a dazzling achievement -- Elodie Harper, author of The Wolf Den trilogy
With this, her third novel based on ancient myth, [Haynes] has found a way of using all her classical erudition and her vivid sense of the ambiguous potency of the ancient stories, while being simultaneously very, very funny * Guardian *
A fierce feminist exploration of female rage, written with wit and empathy. Haynes makes the classics brutally relevant, and we reckon this one is going to be huge * Glamour *
It is no exaggeration to say that Haynes is the modern embodiment of the best of Homer. She is a proper, classic storyteller, whose linguistic skills and wit will have you hanging on every word * Radio Times *
Stone Blind is inventive and playful . . . [and] very funny -- Antonia Senior * The Times *
Pat Barker, Margaret Atwood and Madeline Miller have all successfully picked at the seams of the traditionally male take on these fantastic tales. But Natalie Haynes’s genius, this time with Stone Blind, her third Greek myth novel, is to not just focus on the female experience of Greek myth but also to add zest, humour and more than a little mischief . . . The ride is gripping, funny and heartbreaking. Love, sorrow, adventure and humour - Stone Blind has it all * Metro *
What makes a monster is the central question in Natalie Haynes’ wry, spry feminist take on the Medusa myth . . . an earthy, playful yet rage-filled upending of the Greek hero trope * Mail Online *
With wit, humanity and extraordinary imagination, Haynes breathes life and meaning into myths as she has done so brilliantly before (most famously with A Thousand Ships). She also shows that monsters can be divine or mortal. Not all heroes wear capes – and not all villains have snakes * The i *
Haynes’ clever, empathetic writing transforms Medusa from Gorgon into a girl, who’s a victim of the cruel machinations of the gods and of circumstance -- Sarra Manning * Red Magazine *
Natalie Haynes has made a contemporary classic out of a classic . . . and it should win prizes -- Monique Roffey, author of The Mermaid of Black Conch
There’s real tenderness in Haynes’s portrait of Medusa, a mortal abomination born into a family of divinities, and the efforts of her immortal Gorgon sisters to protect her from herself -- Daisy Dunn * The Spectator *
Haynes is [a] master of her trade . . . She succeeds in breathing warm life into some of our oldest stories * Telegraph *
Haynes is the nation’s great muse -- Adam Rutherford * The Week *
Natalie Haynes is swiftly becoming this generation’s Mary Renault * Observer *
With her trademark passion, wit and fierce feminism, Haynes gives much-needed voice to the silenced women of the Trojan War. Her thoughtful portraits will linger with you long after the book is finished -- Madeline Miller on A Thousand Ships
Haynes is a rock-star mythologist -- Washington Post on A Thousand Ships
Dimensions: 241mm x 164mm x 38mm