Mary Renault was a good writer but, like so many of her generation, she was afflicted by a downer on women. Unsurprising, then, that this novel has a ..Show More »downer on Minoan culture. If she had been ahead of her time in that respect, her writing would have been great. She was not, and this constrains her work. Sad, and must have caused her pain in her personal life, she living as a woman and furthermore one whose only lifelong romantic relationship was with another woman.