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“She was so beautiful that the whole sky flushed pink with pleasure”
“In the preparation of this book, the aim has been to present in a manner suited to young readers the Greek myths that have been world favorites through the centuries, and that have in some measure exercised a formative influence on literature and the fine arts in many countries. While a knowledge of these myths is undoubtedly necessary to a clear understanding of much in literature and the arts, yet it is not for this reason alone that they have been selected; the myths that have appealed to the poets, the painters, and the sculptors for so many ages are the very ones that have the greatest depth of meaning, and that is the most beautiful and the best worth telling. Moreover, these myths appeal strongly to the child mind, and should be presented while the young imagination can make them live. At first, children will enjoy them as stories; but in later years they will see them as the embodiment of spiritual truths.
What a great book! I picked up this novel in a recent second-hand bookshop haul and I`m so pleased that I did. The book is broken down into different popular Greek tales, from the labors of Hercules to Narcissus. One thing I did find a little odd, was that most of the names of the Greek gods were Roman I.e. the Greek version of Zeus was named Jupiter in this rendition.
What I enjoyed about this book was the ease of reading, as it is aimed at children the vocabulary is very easy to follow, and the morals of the stories are basically spelled out for you. Another aspect of the book is how the chapters are compartmentalised, so if you `re in a reading slump (me for the past 2 weeks) you can read a few chapters a night. and as most are completely separate you won’t need to remember details of past chapters.
My favorite part is chapter 14. which tells the story of Narcissus, I hadn’t heard this version before but I enjoyed the bittersweetness of it.
If I could have changed anything, I would have liked the images to be placed next to their corresponding stories as they seemed to be sporadically distributed. I also think that as the target audience for the book is children more illustrations could have been put in.
Overall, I`m happy to have read this book and would be happy to recommend it to adults who want a quick refreshment of the main stories in Greek mythology and for children developing an interest. Happy Reading!
My Rating: 3.8
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