By: Tim Powers
A dark and tangled tale about a mystical power contained by ancient symbols, Medusa’s Web will lure you in an ensnare your attention. Tim Powers, in his latest novel, has gifted readers a book that they can really sink their teeth into. In Medusa’s Web, an age old symbol of a spider contains the power to transport a person through time – or, a more accurate description might be that it creates the exchange of two people in different times, sending one back while drawing the other forward. Brother and sister, Scott and Madeline, are invited back to their childhood home, that of their quirky aunt Amity by her suicide. A newly discovered will asks that they return to the house for a week before the will is to be read in full to anyone. Upon their return, the brother and sister start to remember old memories and begin to understand more of their meanings. Strange things have always happened in this house and now they seem to be happening with greater frequency. Aunt Amity welcomed Scott and Madeline back with a spider made for each of them, a gift to welcome them home, but it seems that there is much more to these strange symbols (and Aunt Amity’s post humous plans) that the two can understand.
Medusa’s Web is a curious novel with mystery, sinister motives, betrayal and shrouded strangers who seem all too interested in the house, the family and their Aunt Amity. The book overall is an enjoyable read, especially for those who enjoy mystery and action. The story line at times gets a little jumpy and tougher to follow – but that has to happen with the jaunts back through time and the way the plot unfolds. Reading Tim Powers latest work is a bit like putting a puzzle together. Its fun, at times addicting, a little frustrating and then all comes together with a crescendo! I’d very much recommend this novel and am looking forward to reading more by the author. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I picked up Medusa’s Web but I can tell you that it delivered more than I might have imagined possible with this type of a story.