From School Library Journal
Grade 6–10—Norris captures the drama of The Iliad
by recasting the Greek epic in a modern-day football rivalry between two neighboring high schools. When school districts are reset and Elena Argos is sent from Lacede High (home of the Spartans) to Troy High, an all-out war erupts after she dumps Spartan Lucas Mennon for Trojan Perry Prince. Perry's younger sister, the outcast Cassie, is thrust into the thick of a conflict she doesn't even care about, and she has the awful feeling that things are only going to get worse. Students familiar with the epic will recognize the characters: Hunter Prince as Hector, who leads the battle despite the whole war having been caused by his irresponsible—even cowardly—brother; Greg Mennon as Agamemnon (here, Cassie's best friend); Spartan football star Ackley as Achilles, who seeks revenge for an ankle injury inflicted by Hunter; and more. Like Cassandra, Cassie's protestations go ignored, but her "Can we please grow up and forget this rivalry?" line gets repetitive and seems trite in the face of the escalating pranks. Still, she grows in her understanding of the cost of friendship and love, and unlike her namesake, gets her happy ending. While The Iliad
story line lends richness to the narrative, the book stands alone, and readers unfamiliar with the classic will still enjoy the war between high schools, started over a beautiful girl.—Alana Joli Abbott, James Blackstone Memorial Library, Branford, CT
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About the Author
Shana Norris is the author of Something to Blog About, a Book Sense Summer 2008 pick. She lives in Kinston, North Carolina, with her husband, dog, and three cats.