Dateline: Troyby Paul Fleischman, Gwen Frankfeldt (Illustrator), Glenn Morrow (Illustrator)
The legend of the Trojan War, with its twists of tragedy and powerful portraits of human nature, has transfixed listeners and readers for thousands of years. Now the award-winning author of Bull Run retells Homer's epic poem the Iliad-- ingeniously juxtaposing each episode with newspaper clippings of modern events from the First World War through the Gulf War--to reveal astonishing parallels between the ancient and modern worlds. Young Adult.
The idea is so immediate and arresting that readers may wonder why it's never been tried before. The parallels Fleischman finds are sometimes obvious, sometimes clever, occasionally brilliant, and always thought-provoking. The tinted collages alone are neither entirely artistic nor totally useful; all the articles are cut off and some are hard to read, and while references are given in the back, few children will have the perseverance to look them up. The art makes the link and then moves on, but such purposeful editing of the modern incidents makes more of a gimmick of the idea than may be intended. No sources are given for the Trojan War events, which becomes noticeable when the author uses a variant of the Odysseus story that is not from Homer. Despite these minor drawbacks, this is a superb and often inspiring work.
Meet the Author
Paul Fleischman won a Newbery Medal for JOYFUL NOISE: POEMS FOR TWO VOICES and a Newbery Honor for GRAVEN IMAGES. He is also the author of the play ZAP and the award-winning picture books SIDEWALK CIRCUS, THE ANIMAL HEDGE, and WESLANDIA. He lives in Aromas, California.
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