Atalanta: The Fastest Runner in the World

Overview

This powerful story is a retelling of the classic Greek myth about the intervention of the goddess Artemis in the life of a young woman. Atalanta, the great hunter and runner, when forced to choose a husband, insists that any man who wishes to wed her must first defeat her in a race — or die by her hand.

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Overview

This powerful story is a retelling of the classic Greek myth about the intervention of the goddess Artemis in the life of a young woman. Atalanta, the great hunter and runner, when forced to choose a husband, insists that any man who wishes to wed her must first defeat her in a race — or die by her hand.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 6-9A prologue that sensitively raises the question of what motivated child abandonment in ancient Greece sets the thought-provoking tone for this excellent retelling. Not quite a novelization, Galloway's version sticks close to the basic myth, adding dialogue, fleshing out minor characters, and assigning plausible thoughts and feelings. It powerfully underscores the psychological conflicts Atalanta experiences as she rejects her society's expectations for women, choosing the ``masculine'' roles of hunter and runner; as she is summoned by the birth father who meant her to die in infancy; as her loyalty to Artemis is challenged by her own awakening capacity for love; and as she struggles to know herself and where her duty lies. Not only the length, but also the sophistication of the text, suggests an older audience than the picture-book crowd (although Galloway has omitted Atalanta's survival of a rape attempt). The artist's adaptation of the Archaic style also fits this audience. His depiction of the wounding of the Calydonian boar or the sacrifice of the failed suitors, for example, combines the representative and the symbolic in much the same way that myth does. Alas, the poor-quality paper allows distracting show-through; and the text stops quite abruptly, leaving readers hanging (although also without the gruesomely tragic final episode of the myth).Patricia (Dooley) Lothrop Green, St. George's School, Newport, RI
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781550374636
  • Publisher: Annick Press, Limited
  • Publication date: 6/1/1995
  • Series: Tales of Ancient Lands Series
  • Pages: 80
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 550L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 10.40 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Priscilla Galloway, PhD has told old Greek stories to two generations of enthralled listeners and is now joyously weaving them into her own writing. She has published adult non-fiction and children's books, and her poetry and short fiction have appeared in magazines and scholarly journals. She has also edited several anthologies. She has taught literature and writing at the high school and university levels and been honored as Teacher of the Year by the Ontario Council of Teachers of English. Priscilla Galloway lives in Toronto.

Normand Cousineau was born in Montréal and studied Graphic Arts. His editorial illustrations have appeared in the New York Times, The Observer and The Globe & Mail. He has also received a Merit Award from Studio Magazine.

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