Theseus and the Minotaur

Theseus and the Minotaur

by Leonard Everett Everett Fisher, Leonard Everett Fisher

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This book retells the Greek myth of the hero Theseus and his battle with the bull-headed monster called the Minotaur.


This book retells the Greek myth of the hero Theseus and his battle with the bull-headed monster called the Minotaur.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The tragic story of the young hero Theseushis meeting with his father, King Aegeus; his battle with the Minotaur; his doomed love for Ariadne (because Dionysus claims her); and the death of Aegeusis well-suited to Fisher's striking illustrations. The idea that great victory can be followed by tragedy is accentuated by the artist's color choices: even bright colors in the spectrum have been darkened appropriately. One particularly effective picture shows a fearful Theseus between oversized skeletons and the grotesque and foreboding shadow of the Minotaur. In addition to the sturdy retelling, Fisher includes a bibliography and a detailed map of Theseus's journey; both of these round out the volume and may prove helpful to readers interested in pursuing further aspects of this tale. Ages 6-8. (Oct.)
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 2-4 A retelling of the myth of one of Athens' greatest heroes. Theseus, abandoned at birth by his father-king, emerges in adolescence as courageous, resourceful, and heroic. He volunteers to slay the monsterous Minotaur who lives in a labyrinth and each year devours 14 sacrificial Athenian youth. Theseus, with the help of the beautiful Ariadne, kills the Minotaur and finds his way out of the labyrinth. The king, believing his son dead, throws himself off a cliff; Theseus then gains the throne. Fisher's acrylic illustrations, on each large double-page spread, are exquisitely composed and atmospheric. His use of light and shadow is particularly effective; the pictures project well for group sharing. The narrative, however, lacks the smooth, straightforward style (comfortable for reading aloud) of D'Aulaires' Book of Greek Myths (Doubleday, 1962). Occasionally Fisher's prose may require a second reading for clarity: ``Dionysus told Theseus that he had long loved Ariadne and wished to marry her; and that if he, Theseus, knew what was good for him, he would depart from the island immediately and leave Ariadne to him, the god, Dionysus.'' Literal-minded children will not discover an illustration of the ``half-man, half-bull'' described in the text. Rather, this Minotaur looks like a large man who wears a bull-hood over his head. Readers will also look in vain for an illustration of the labyrinth itself. These reservations aside, this dramatic presentation conveys the power of ancient legend, especially through the illustrations. Susan H. Patron, Los Angeles Public Library

Product Details

Holiday House, Inc.
Publication date:
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
8.04(w) x 10.92(h) x 0.11(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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