Dreaming of Antigone
Kensington (US & CA: 29th March 2016)
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CONTENT WARNING: Drug overdose, suicide, paedophilia/child abuse.
Can an Ancient Greek tragedy be translated into contemporary YA romance? Unfamiliar with the story of Antigone, I can’t confirm how much Robin Bridges’ Dreaming of Antigone sticks to the template, but Andria Webb’s English class studies Sophocles’ play. This inclusion affected my enjoyment, because I dislike when characters read/study texts that inspired their story. (Seems too obvious; banging readers over the head.)
The poetry also didn’t work for me, though I understand its inclusion as it forms part of the characters’ meet-cute. But it comes across as pretentious.
Since Dreaming of Antigone is based on a tragedy, Andria has a lot of problems in her life: She has epilepsy, her father committed suicide when she was young, her twin sister died from an overdose, and now her stepfather’s in trouble with the law. I feel worse for Andria’s mother, though – she can’t catch a break. Meanwhile, Andria has friends, a poetry-reciting boyfriend, and a passion for astronomy.
(Also, we need to kill the trope of journals conveniently written to give insight and answers into a person’s life and death. Seems too easy. Investigation would’ve been more interesting.)