The Sweet Girl by Annabel Lyon
Aristotle has never been able to resist a keen mind in another, even in his own daughter, Pythias, The Sweet Girl of the title - a young girl who should be content with the kitchen, the loom and a future of childbearing. But Pythias is really smart, able to best Aristotle's own students in debate; is she a freak or a harbinger of what women can really achieve? Whichever is the case, hers is a privileged position, a woman who moves in a man's world, protected by the reputation of her philosopher father. Yet her entire life is set to change when Aristotle falls from grace...
Driven from Athens, the old philosopher soon dies. Without the loving guidance of her father, the orphaned sixteen-year-old Pythias quickly discovers that the world is a place not of logic after all, but one of superstition, and that a girl can be preyed upon by gods and goddesses as much as by grown men and women. To safely journey to a place in which she can reach her true potential, Aristotle's daughter will need every ounce of wit she possesses; and she must also learn, quickly, to nurture her capacity to love.
Annabel Lyon is the author of two short story collections, Oxygen, and The Best Thing for You. She lives in British Columbia with her husband and two children. In 2009, she won the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize for her novel, also published by Atlantic Books,The Golden Mean, about Aristotle and the young Alexander the Great. Here Lyon boldly imagines one of history's most intriguing relationships and the war at its heart between ideas and action as ways of knowing the world. She tells her story, breathtakingly, in the earthy, frank and perceptive voice of Aristotle himself. With sensual and muscular prose, she explores how Aristotle's genius touched the boy who would conquer the known world. And she reveals how we still live with the ghosts of both men.