“Before the fifth century B.C., before Socrates breathed or Aristotle stopped to think, the newly unified city-state of Athens was struggling to survive. The Parthenon had yet to be built; the Acropolis was nonexistent. Neither Greek comedy nor Greek tragedy had ever been performed. A long, bloody war with Crete had left Athens crushed and demoralized. And as its people attempted to piece together their tattered lives, much was uncertain. Could Athens afford to pay the required tribute? Even then, would Crete honor the treaty?” Excerpt taken from the preface of Labyrinth of Lies.
This is the world of my story. It is set in Ancient Greece, during a very critical period in Greek history, a time when war has just barely ended in a tremulous peace treaty and the threat of further bloodshed still lingers overhead. Many of the classic characters from Greek mythology make appearances, but this time, they show up as real people. And in real life, they are slightly different from their immortal, mythological versions. Yet, although they have been robbed of their supernatural abilities, they are just as devious as they are in mythology. Each and every one of them has their own set of motives that all contribute to a gigantic tangle of secrets.
I chose to write a story in this particular setting due to an Art History project I was assigned in high school. I had always enjoyed Greek mythology, and I had thought I thoroughly understood the topic. Yet, as it turned out, I was wrong. When I was researching the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur, I learned something. Theseus was a real person. There is historical evidence pointing to the fact that Theseus actually lived. The Aegean Sea in Greece was named after his father, King Aegeus, who appears to have been real also. King Minos, the cruel and harsh ruler of Crete, built a palace at Knossos. You can still tour the ruins of his throne room today. Among the ruins was a structure that even resembled the fabled labyrinth.
This, naturally, got me thinking. I began to wonder that, if all of these people actually lived, and there was possibly even a real labyrinth, then what could possibly have been going on? We know today that Minotaurs do not exist. There cannot possibly be a half-man and half-bull creature that survives by gorging itself on fourteen youths only once a year. So, if there was no Minotaur, then why build the labyrinth? What secret could be so horrific that it would necessitate the annual shedding of fourteen innocent lives?
This is essentially what my story is about. It suddenly struck me that maybe there was more to this old, tired myth than I had originally thought, and thus, my story was born. It is essentially the back story to a Greek myth, and is situated at that unique junction where historical fiction meets adventure meets romance meets conspiracy theory.
About Labyrinth of Lies:
Something foul is afoot in Ancient Greece. Athens is bruised from a previous war with Crete. Worse still, King Minos annually demands fourteen Athenian youths to be fed to the Cretan Minotaur, which is locked inside a maze. Theseus has grown up amidst this tangle of pain. When his own beloved, Zosemine, is taken to be fed to the Minotaur, Theseus finds himself at the heart of a web of conflicting motives, with the sense that even those closest to him cannot be trusted. Questions abound. Why is his father so ashamed? What is King Minos hiding? Is the Minotaur even real? And if not, what truly lies at the heart of the labyrinth? Little does Theseus know that all the various plots and motives all weave around one terrible secret. Theseus must navigate the labyrinth and see past the masks, to slay the Minotaur.
Pallas raised his eyebrows and spoke. “You are brave, indeed, if you seek to kill the Minotaur. I dearly hope you succeed, for blessed is the one who will rid us of that beast. But the world is a fearsome place, Theseus. It is filled with twisted hearts and hopes and dreams. You think to enter the Minotaur’s maze once you arrive in Crete, but here you are wrong, Theseus. You have already entered the labyrinth—you were born into it, and in it, you can trust no one.”
Hannah Lokos is a sleep-deprived college student (biology major) who writes novels on the side, usually between the hours of 1 and 4 a.m. Her first novel to be published, Labyrinth of Lies, is scheduled for release this December 2, 2013. Fun facts about Hannah? She has climbed Mt. Whitney, been stung by a jellyfish, and yes, unfortunately, she’s even eaten a cricket. (It was dead, so no worries!) She likes Mozart and heavy metal, knitting and paintballing, and she absolutely loves cats.
How to get Hannah’s New Release:
Labyrinth of Lies is currently scheduled for release for December 2, 2013. Even though you can’t buy it yet, links will be available on Champagne’s website: www.champagnebookgroup.com and her own website www.hannahlokos.com.
The ISBN number is: ISBN 978-1-77155-037-6
Connect with Hannah:
My website: www.hannahlokos.com