Blind Eye


Is this the 14th tale about Marilyn Todd’s wonderfully bitchy and feisty detective Claudia? No, this is the first tale about her forthright and more compassionate (but equally feisty) detective Iliona. The fact that somebody has finally written a novel set in the world of classical Greece that does not contain Alexander the Great is worth the price of admission alone, and since it is not about Greeks but about Spartans, so much the better. Iliona is the high priestess of the river god Eurotas, but when the icily efficient Lysander catches her aiding “deserters” he blackmails her into helping his Krypteia, the feared Spartan secret police. She has to masquerade as the high priestess of Alphaeus and try to clear Sparta’s name following a recent massacre, where the Spartans had been set up to look like the guilty party. This necessitates a trip to Syracuse, but somebody in the Krypteia is a traitor, and people keep being murdered. The locals say that the hills hide a Cyclops…

If you like the Claudia series you will also enjoy this book, as there are similarities galore—rather too many in some respects. But fortunately one of them is the easy-to-read style. Ms Todd has no problem with pacing and fills up the pages with adventures, wit and a lively plot. Another appeal is the sheer novelty of reading about Spartans, helots, exotic rituals, Syracuse and the Krypteia. I hope that this is the start of a new series, but if it is going to be as good as it can be, some of the similarities between this and the Claudia series need to be ironed out, or at least rendered different.

Share this review





(US) $28.95
(UK) £18.99

(US) 9780727865564




Appeared in

Reviewed by