Review: Helen and Troy’s Epic Road Trip

A. Lee Martinez’s Helen and Troy’s Epic Road Trip has a great title. It’s also a great book.

I have enjoyed all of Martinez’s previous books (seriously, go buy any of them). He seems to prefer stand-alone books which means a person can read which ever one the bookstore has. Sometimes I like a series, but it’s nice to be able to just read the books without having to either buy sixteen of them or have to remember things from three books back.

Our protagonist is Helen, a perfectly normal teenage girl who worries about how her clothes fit, cute boys, and whether her horns will fit through a doorway since she’s a Minotaur. Martinez has put a lot of thought into his world and how having a Minotaur as the main character would affect her progress (and how such a thing might have happened anyway). And Martinez nails a female character (something he’s done well before) and a teenage one at that. It’s not always easy to write as another gender (or species) without resorting to stereotype, but Martinez achieves this wonderfully (I was going to write “easily” but how would I know? 🙂 ).

As you can probably tell from the title, this is a humorous take on mythology (and how it might be updated for modern America). Witty details abound (which I’m not going to share because they are so great).

If you like fast-paced, funny quest books, I recommend this one. Then go read some more Martinez–it’s worth it.

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