Zeus: A Journey Through Greece in the Footsteps of a God

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In the tradition of Walking the Bible, an irresistible tour through some of the most powerful stories ever told.

Lusty, lightning-tempered, polyamorous Zeus was the most powerful and charismatic of the Greek gods, and the progenitor of some of the most enduring stories of world mythology. In Zeus, author Tom Stone takes readers on a 4,000-year journey through the god’s tumultuous life, from his origins as a sky god in the Russian steppes and his scandalous reign on Mt. Olympus ...

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Overview

In the tradition of Walking the Bible, an irresistible tour through some of the most powerful stories ever told.

Lusty, lightning-tempered, polyamorous Zeus was the most powerful and charismatic of the Greek gods, and the progenitor of some of the most enduring stories of world mythology. In Zeus, author Tom Stone takes readers on a 4,000-year journey through the god’s tumultuous life, from his origins as a sky god in the Russian steppes and his scandalous reign on Mt. Olympus to his approaching end in a palace storeroom in Christian Constantinople. Crossing the length and breadth of Greece, Stone and his Iranian wife explore the most significant sites in Greek myth, from mountaintops to subterranean caves, Olympus to Crete, and Mycenae to Macedonia. Along the way, he reveals how Zeus’s story grew from the soil of Greece and changed along with the country’s history, all with a brilliant mix of erudition and bravura storytelling. Combining mythology, history, and travel, this is an indispensable book for anyone who loves Greece or its great stories of myth and legend.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The supreme deity of Greek mythology has his lusty, tempestuous story recast in engaging fashion by Stone...As a guide, Stone is informed, enthusiastic, and entertaining, the very qualities needed to ignite interest in the timelessness of Greek mythology.”—Booklist

“[Stone is] a genial, self-deprecating and often felicitous docent…he intercuts his complex narratives of theogony, theology, history and hysteria with descriptions of his recent travels to many of the sites long associated with Zeus...A lucid and lucent retelling of those most marvelous tales.”—Kirkus

“Filled with viewpoints and facts I've never seen connected together elsewhere, this beautiful walk through the archaeology and evolution of Zeus really brings alive ‘the Old Thunderer,’ along with the people who loved him through the ages.”—Charles Pellegrino, author of Ghosts of Vesuvius: A New Look at Last Days of Pompeii, How Towers Fall, and Other Strange Connections

“Tom Stone has rescued Zeus and the other beguiling gods and goddesses of ancient Greece from the dusty pages of Bulfinch's Mythology and restored them to the rightful place in our cultural pantheon. At the same time, he invites us along on a remarkable odyssey through the exotic lands where they first worked their magic so long ago. Like Henry Miller and Lawrence Durrell, Stone acts as both an expert guide and an enchanting storyteller. A beautiful and beguiling book!”Jonathan Kirsch, author of A History of the End of the World: How the Most Controversial Book in the Bible Changed the Course of Western Civilization

“For Tom Stone, the Greek landscape is a wonderland of history and myth – a place where the roots of Western culture bring forth some of the most wondrous stories ever told. In Zeus, his scholar’s knowledge and storyteller’s charm illuminate the land, her people, and their tales, always keeping one keen eye on the heavens and another on the ground.” An irresistible tour, led by a marvelous guide."Bob Brier, author of The Murder of Tutankhamen

"Ancient Greece swarmed with gods, none greater than the bearded Zeus, lord of the sky and head of the ancients’ moral order. Many centuries later, our devoted fascination with Zeus continues. To readers’ delight, author and adventurer Tom Stone takes us on a rollicking voyage through Greece, where we learn that the legend of Zeus can still warm the heart—and thrill the senses. Through Stone's observant eyes and beautiful prose, we are a witness to the beauty of a land and of a people who aroused the gods. This is a journey no reader should miss."Jean Sasson, author of Love in a Torn Land: Joanna of Kurdistan

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781582345185
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
  • Publication date: 2/5/2008
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 6.17 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 1.33 (d)

Meet the Author

A philhellene who lived in Greece for twenty-two years, Tom Stone is the author of six previous books about Greece and its culture and language, including The Summer of My Greek Taverna. He has written extensively on Greece and its history for various magazines and guide books. He lives in Los Angeles.

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Table of Contents

Chronology     xiii
Author's Note     xix
A Note on the Translations     xxi
Foreword     xxiii
Advent
Pericles     3
The Coming of the Greeks     7
The Minoans     17
Fearsome Echoes     23
The Son
Cradle to Grave     37
The Road to Power     49
The Father
Spreading the Faith     65
Prometheus, Pandora, and Other Matters     74
Divine Rights     83
The Cretan Saga     91
Thebes: The Ill-Fated Marriage of Kadmos and Harmonia     112
The Heroes of the Argolid-I: Perseus     121
The Heroes of the Argolid-II: Herakles     127
The House of Atreus-I: The Beginnings     139
The House of Atreus-II: Mycenae     149
A Terrible Beauty     156
Remembered Pain     162
The Killing Doom     169
The Holy Ghost
The Voices of God     179
Holding the Center     189
Their Finest Hour     194
The Wonder of the World     203
The Dying Fall     209
Fires from Heaven     216
The Final Metamorphosis     228
Acknowledgments     239
Notes     241
Selected Bibliography     293
Index     301
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 25, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    For someone who supposedly lived in Greece for 22 years, he does

    For someone who supposedly lived in Greece for 22 years, he doesn't seem to know there are still many followers there of the Greek Gods, otherwise he wouldn't be so disrespectful to start off his book by basically saying the Gods don't exist. For someone who passes himself off as knowing a lot about Zeus, he doesn't seem to realize there are people who still follow Zeus in Greece and around the world. If he does realize this, then he clearly has no respect for His followers or any followers of the old Gods. This book is a waste of good paper.

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