Children's LiteratureMyths were part of the oral tradition of the ancient Greeks for hundreds of years and were used to explain something in nature or to impart a lesson. In the story of Demeter and Persephone there is an explanation for the seasons, while in Baucis and Philemon people are taught to be kind to travelers. One will read about the origins of the beautiful narcissus flower and why Echo disappeared leaving only her voice. Nine Greek myths are retold, including the creation of the gods and their struggle with the Titans to take control of the world. Each story is complemented by an introduction and expert commentary by scholars of Greek mythology. Questions and answers follow each section. Pen and ink drawings accompany the text. A glossary, index, web sites and suggestions for further reading make this a valuable source. The writing and research are excellent, making this useful in the classroom. Part of the "Mythology" series, which feature ancient civilizations. 2001, Enslow, $20.95. Ages 9 to 15. Reviewer: Laura Hummel
School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 6-8-This book opens with a well-researched preface that offers background information on the ancient Greek culture, setting the time and place and distinguishing between real locations and mythological story. In addition, each of the nine tales includes an introduction. Houle presents creation tales; several well-known stories about important mythological figures (Pandora and Prometheus); and a few lesser-known tales, such as the story of Helius and Phaethon. Simply written, this collection is a good resource for reports or classroom use. Each story is followed by questions and answers and a page or two of "expert commentary" that extend the lesson through quotations from academic sources. The illustrations and genealogical chart are merely decorative and suggest a younger audience. Still, this is a useful addition for libraries that need more on the topic, especially those serving reluctant readers.-Angela J. Reynolds, Washington County Cooperative Library Services, Hillsboro, OR Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
See all customer reviews