Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Golden Fleece and the Heroes Who Lived Before Achilles

You can buy a copy of The Golden Fleece and the Heroes Who Lived Before Achilles by Padraic Colum at Barnes and Noble and BooksAMillion or you can read the story for free through Amazon or Project Gutenberg.

The Blurb

1922 Newbery Honor Book
Follow the strange and wondrous adventure of Jason and his Argonauts - through uncharted waters where clashing rocks dash the sea, to shores where harpies with wings of birds and heads of women torment poor mortals. Listen to the songs of the Argonaut Orpheus, songs of the creation of Heaven and Earth, Zeus's battle with the Titans, Pandora and her jar of troubles, Persephone in the Underworld, and the great labors of Hercules. 

My Review
The Golden Fleece and the Heroes Who Lived Before Achilles by Padraic Colum
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I remember this book being read to me as a child and I didn't like it then and I don't like it now. The prose is quasi-archaic with thous and thees thrown into passive sentences that tell rather than show what happens. It makes for a dull read.

The myths aren't in chronological order even though they could be sorted and told in such a manner instead of bouncing back and forth in time. As a child, I couldn't keep the chronology straight, not without backtracking and rereading (which I wasn't inclined to do; thankfully, I heard the stories and my relatives could quickly catch me up to where I needed to be or I would've abandoned the book). As an adult, I've been exposed to Edith Hamilton and I prefer her versions of the myths.

As a child, I had problems visualizing the ancient Greek world. I couldn't keep places straight and adult-me still thinks a map should've been included for reference. I also would have liked a small dictionary to help with pronunciation (and maybe a quick lesson on the evolution of the Greek alphabet). I feel like this book missed a lot of teaching opportunities.

View all my reviews

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