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The Spartan Paperback – 2005

3.2 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 374 pages
  • Publisher: American Home School Publishin (2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0966706781
  • ISBN-13: 978-0966706789
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,580,220 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By L. R. Runnels on January 3, 2008
Format: Paperback
Snedeker writes a beautifully descriptive story of life in ancient Sparta. The story follows the life of Aristodemos (an Athenian by birth) who as a young boy is brought to Sparta and immediately placed in a barracks where all Spartan boys are sent to live and train until the age of 30. Life is harsh and unforgiving for boys growing up in Sparta and Aristodemos endures many trials as he grows into adulthood. As a young man, he is one of the 300 Spartans warriors sent to hold the narrow pass at Thermopylae against the Persians. By an unfortunate set of circumstances, Aristodemos is kept from the battle and he is left the only survivor of the 300 brave Spartans. He returns home where is unfairly branded a coward. The story ends at the battle of Plataea where Aristodemos attempts to redeem his reputation.
This is a wonderful book for students of Greek history. Snedeker paints a fantastic literary picture of life in the time of the Persian wars. Although this is a fictional novel, it is packed with accurate historical facts that make this period in Greek history come alive for the reader. I highly recommend this book for children in the upper middle school grades through adult. As this book was written in the early 1900's, it may be beneficial for the parent/teacher to discuss the language the author uses to describe some of the relationships between the boys. While there is no sexuality implied, it could be construed as sexual intimacy by today's standards when, for instance the word "lover" is used for "special friend". As I am a Christian homeschooling mom, I would not let this deter you from using this book as home school material, only read it and discuss it with your child. For younger readers, I recommend "Theras and His Town" by the same author for a similar taste of Spartan and Athenian History. Both books are engaging and educational!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Purchased the $6.99 AMA Publication version of this book for Kindle. The book is pdf page images, and only half of each image is visible on the Kindle, making the book frustrating to read and some sentences not visible at all.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
First, we have not finished reading this book, and I believe that the story would most likely be worthy of a favorable rating. This 2 star rating is a warning to buyers about the quality of the printing. I would never again order a book published by Forgotten Books. I am thankful that many publishers are trying to put older books back in print, but this is terrible. It is hard on the eyes, and many of the letters are even hard to distinguish. It takes away from the joy of reading and comprehension to have to concentrate so hard because the print is so light and sketchy. In a word: FRUSTRATING. I have never experienced this when attempting to read a book. The font is not small, but the print is very light THROUGHOUT (not just here and there) and letters are hard to identify in some places. My daughter gave up when she tried to read it on her own, and I have begun reading it out loud to my family. It takes effort to read and try to maintain a flow while reading. I hate to give unfavorable ratings, but cannot recommend buying books from this publisher.
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Format: Paperback
Aristodemos is a young Athenian boy whose father Lycos was a singer and friend of the famous poet Pindar,and his mother Makaria was a Spartan runner. As the book opens, Lycus has died, so Makaria is taking her son and their slaves back to her native Sparta so that Aristodemos can become the adopted son of her brother Gylippos. There the boy is trained as a Spartan soldier, although his Athenian spirit chafes under the Stoic discipline. His squad leader is Leonidas, and the two become close friends as Aristodemos grows into manhood. During this time, Aristodemos buys a slave boy who appears to be of noble birth and adopts him as his son with the name Mendi.
Eventually, Leonidas becomes King, and Aristodemos is one of the famous 300 Spartan soldiers who follow Leonidas to hold the pass of Thermopylae when the Persians invade Greece. Leonidas sends Aristodemos on a spy mission to discern the strength of the Persian army. He is captured, and when he finally escapes, he is blinded by a contagious eye inflammation, thus being unable to participate in the tragic battle. When he returns to Sparta as the only survivor, he is unfairly branded as a coward. Not wishing his adopted son to share his curse, he goes to Delphi to see if the oracle can reveal who the boy's father is and then takes Mendi to Italy to find his real father. Relieved of this responsibility, he joins first the Athenian and then the Spartan units at the battle of Plataea in hopes of redeeming his honor. Will Aristodemos achieve his aim? What will happen to him?
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After reading Theras and His Town, my 10-year old daughter was eager to read another book from Snedeker. Unfortunately, The Spartan is not her cup of tea. Maybe it is written with an older audience in mind, but she finds it very boring. We'll hold onto it in case she grows into it since Theras was a great addition to her study of ancient Greece.
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