Greek Lore With a Modern Twist

eye - Marianne Micros

The fourteen stories contained in Marianne Micros’ collection, eye, touch on ideas of Greek culture, mythology, superstition and lore as they relate to a modern sensibility.  Each entry references “eyes” in various ways, both literal and metaphorical.  Some of the themes that run throughout:

  • Predictions and omens of death- The fear it produces despite a strong belief in an afterlife
  • Older generation’s rigid adherence to traditions vs. younger generation’s reluctant abandonment of them
  • Women as the perpetuators of culture through their roles as mother, midwife, herbalist, mourner and storyteller
  • Loss of connection to the natural world and the consequences that result

Micros is most successful in those stories that show the personal struggle between faith and a desire to evolve, as in “Paved” and “Invention of Pantyhose: An Autobiography.” These stories also happen to be the most interesting in terms of style and form. Some readers might be put off by the amount of repetition in the collection and the cynical portrayal of religion and its implied hypocrisy. Eye would be particularly appealing to those familiar with or interested in Greek lore and beliefs.

Thanks to Guernica and NetGalley for an ARC of this book in exchange for an objective review.