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The Hittite Mass Market Paperback – May 24, 2011

3.8 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Bova is best known as a prolific writer of works of science fiction. Here he tries his hand at supposedly historical fiction, with interesting, enjoyable, but uneven results. Lukka, a Hittite warrior, returns to the Hittite capital city to find it engulfed in civil war, his father murdered, and his wife and two young sons taken away by slavers. Along with a small cadre of soldiers under his command, Lukka launches an epic search for his family, which leads him to the gates of Troy as it is beseiged by the army of Agamemnon. Bova then proceeds to an original retelling of the final stages of the legendary Trojan War. In this account, Lukka serves as a literary mirror, revealing the personalities of some well-known characters, with a few surprising results. Odysseus, predictably, is practical, crafty, and a natural survivor in treacherous waters. Achilles is a born killer, but he is shown as short and ugly, and his death is decidedly unheroic. Helen is, of course, the babe of all babes, but she is also petty and whiny. Bova tends to use flowery, descriptive language to excess, but he knows his Homer. --Jay Freeman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


“Excellent. A thrilling and inventive retelling of the legend of Troy.” ―David Hagberg, New York Times bestselling author of The Expediter

“mpletely convincing and emotionally satisfying; the adventure and warfare are gripping enough to keep me awake to finish the book in a single night. I hope that when I'm [Bova's] age, I'll be doing--as he is--the best work of my career.” ―Orson Scott Card, New York Times bestselling author of Ender's Game

“A cast of stars, all seen through the eyes of a Hittite warrior. With authentic battle scenes and the reality of siege warfare, THE HITTITE is an adventure you'll want to undertake.” ―Barbara D'Amato, Mary Higgins Clark award-winning author of Foolproof

“Bova gets better and better, combining plausible science with increasingly complex fiction.” ―Daily News (Los Angeles)

“Bova proves himself equal to the task of showing how adversity can temper character in unforeseen ways.” ―The New York Times

“[A] cautionary but hopeful thriller… modern twists and a genuinely surprising ending.” ―Publishers Weekly on The Green Trap

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Forge Books; Reprint edition (May 24, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765363631
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765363633
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.9 x 6.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,586,456 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Ben Bova is a good writer, there is no doubt about that, but this book fails to satisfy because you don't really get to see much of the characters in the sense that they are like a coloring book. The IMAGE is there, but it isn't colored in. You find the protagonist is so superficial that you don't care much what happens to him. There at=re some glaring historical mistakes which indicate that Mr. Bova did his research i on Wikipedia. The Hittites were the first people to produce tools and small weapons using iron, but they did not use iron in war. An iron sword of 1250 BCE would have been far too brittle and could not come close to bronze. They did do it, but it was low grade iron. Second, he makes the comment that people could pay with coinage in 1250 BCE. No...bits of precious metal , yes...coins no. Precious metal was used in economic transfers, but coinage implies a medium of exchange created by the state. That does not come around until 600 BCE in the Anatolian kingdom of Lydia.

I also found the Lukka- Helen relationship to be contrived. ALSO, the Hittites did not use figure eight, dipylon or tower shields. Their shields were not roundeither, at least not in 1250. Hittite body armor, when they used it was nothing like what was depicted in the novel. Hittite infantry was generally of the light infantry style. Most of their efforts and what made them a formidable fighting force was their chariot corps, which was the best bar none...even the Egyptians. Infantry were the militia conscripts. The chariot warriors were the professionals. Lukka always talks about the brilliant infantry of Hatti...professional and disciplined. Bollocks. They almost lost the Battle of Quadesh for the Hittitrs because of their lack of discipline.
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Format: Hardcover
If you love history,adventure,romance and a mystery thriller then The Hittite by Ben Bova is the book for you! Once started, I couldn't put it down. It's a real page turner,a convincing and inventive retelling of the legend of Troy. It has an interesting and believable twist! The Hittite is an adventure you'll want to undertake and be looking for more at the end of the book.
Historical figures and concepts are incorporated into the novel in an acceptable manner.
Mr.Bova has done his research. He takes recently discovered facts concerning the Hittites, their empire and military proficiency and turns the myth of Troy into a believable novel.
If you are a connoisseur of ancient history The Hittite will make sense and as the ending is left open there is a possibility for a sequel...I hope the author feels the same.
I highly recommend this book!
I read a few comments that questioned Mr. Bova's research....
if you are trully interested in the veracity of historical facts in the book then try:
Trevor Bryce
Joachim Lactaz
and J.D.Hawkins to name a few.
These people are experts in their field of Hittite history, archeology and language.
"New evidence leads to these conclusions....recent excavations of 13th century Troy and translations of Hittite Tablets(by J.D.Hawkins)and an archelogical enterprise under the direction of of Manfred Korfman authenticates Mr.Bova's conclusions of Hittite and Tojan history and involvement.

Rebutal to Stuart McCunn: The only item I agree with you is the cover art: Lukka could have been portrayed more authentically and I would rather imagine Helen for myself. It had the look of a romance novel. But I do believe that cover art is more in the hands of the publisher than the author.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've only read one other piece of writing by Ben Bova. It was a short story called "Stars, Won't You Hide Me?" That was back in the 1970's, but I still remember how much it excited my imagination.

The Ancient Middle East intrigues me, particularly the Hittites, who spoke an Indo-European language. Recognizing Ben Bova's name, I decided to read my first adventure story about a Hittite. It wasn't completely what I expected because Lukka the Hittite and his remaining men made it all the way to Troy in search of his wife and two sons. Were historic timelines and facts bent a bit here and there? Yes, but it was an adventure story that brought characters from the Illiad to life in all their glorious imperfection through the eyes of Lukka the Hittite.

Was I completely satisfied with the story's outcome and direction? Truthfully, I was about 90-95% of the time, and I feel that Ben Bova pretty much delivered a good read!
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Format: Hardcover
I love historical books, I also am interested in the nation of the Hittites. however the language that this book was written in is extremely poor. Its been extremely dumbed down, and i while reading it i felt as if i were reading a children's book. after 60 pgs, i found that I was more interested in the city of troy, than if the main character ever found his missing sons. the main character was very flat, we new nothing of his personal history, or what sort of man he was. the slave poletes had more depth than the main character. how lame is that? i had no idea that war rape and murder could be so boring.
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