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Homer's Daughter

3.9 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0736610513
ISBN-10: 0736610510
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Editorial Reviews

Review

A great imagination and above all a powerful intellect Daily Telegraph --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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6 1.5-hour cassettes
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Product Details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: Books on Tape, Inc. (November 17, 1986)
  • ISBN-10: 0736610510
  • ISBN-13: 978-0736610513
  • Shipping Information: View shipping rates and policies
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,676,072 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Robert Graves, poet, novelist and scholar of things Greek, here explores the possibility that The Odyssey, successor to Homer's Illiad, was written by a princess of mixed Greek and other ancestry in a Greek-Trojan settlement in ancient Sicily some time after the Trojan War. Using internal evidence which suggests female authorship and a relationship of the terrain described to areas in the western Mediterranean, Graves speculates that the true author told her own story, possibly a true one, buried within the Homeric epic which has been handed down to us via the ancient Greeks. To get it included among the Homeric canon this young, energetic and extremely intelligent woman manages to get the tale incorporated into the body of Homeric songs through the auspices of a member of the Homeric guild. But, scholarly speculation aside, this is basically a tale of adventure and intrigue as it recounts the events surrounding the siege of a king's household by rebellious nobles using a suit for his young daughter's hand as an excuse to undermine and destroy her father's rule. The princess, clever and indomitable by turns, first investigates the mystery of her elder brother's disappearance and then organizes a shrewd counterplot, reminiscent of Odysseus' triumphal and bloody return to Ithaca, to reclaim her father's holdings and the honor of his house. A bit slow and ponderous in the beginning, and somewhat too scholarly, it nevertheless comes sharply to life in the second half of the book as the plot to undo the suitors' predations hurtles toward its bloody resolution. A good tale and worth the read, though it's not quite as compelling or erudite as Graves' other work in this vein: Hercules, My Shipmate -- a tale of Jason and his Argonauts on the quest for the Golden Fleece. -- Stuart W. Mirsky author of The King of Vinland's Saga
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Robert Graves spins yet another highly enjoyable historical fiction. I enjoyed the refresher course on Greek mythology and descriptions vivid enough to bring the characters, lifestyle and landscape into sharp focus. I was not challenged in the least to visualize the landscape and events, they were a gift from the author. One of those stories you do not want to put down!

This is an adventure, but it is also peek into the day to day domestic life of the Ancient Greeks. It gives a voice to women who where considered little more than a womb by the Ancient Greek males - at least in some of the writings that have survived. Graves draws on his vast knowledge of Ancient Greece to bring it to life. The author was criticized for being a historian and writing historical fiction. But as far as I can tell, it would have been a crime for Graves to suppress his excellent ability to weave an engaging tale.

I also recommend Count Belisarius and I, Claudius and Claudius the God. I look forward to reading other books by Robert Graves.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
More enjoyable of you are familiar with the Odyssey, but enjoyable even if you are not. Graves' dry sense of humor emerges in much of this book.
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Format: Kindle Edition
This is a good, smart, neat little story, about 200 pages long, narrated 1st person by the clever, resourceful intelligent heroine, Princess Nausicaa, daughter of the Elyman king of Drepanum, in Western Sicily, living around 750BC, ie in the Greek Archaic Age. It is a historical novel set not in the Greek Bronze Age of the Trojan War, but in the Archaic Age of the 8th century BC. It borrows and remodels some events from the Odyssey. The first chapter, or rather its preface, is slow, giving the background of the Elyman settlement, but the story then quickly begins.

It is based on the theory originally developed by Samuel Butler (1835 –1902, author of The Way of All Flesh), that, while Homer (or the male bards called Homeridae, or Sons of Homer) were responsible for The Iliad, The Odyssey was composed by a Sicilian woman, and its landscape located in Sicily (especially the territory of Trapani) and its nearby islands: unlike the Iliad, the Odyssey focusses on social areas where women had expertise, but less with knowledge areas in the male field. Robert Graves was convinced of this theory, and it accorded with his general tendency to allocate strong roles to women, as his belief in a matriarchal religion and power females such as Livia in 'I Claudius'.

PLOT SPOILERS: please note, as it's difficult to give a review without including some.
In 'Homer's Daughter', Nausicaa is the fictional authoress of The Odyssey, with its Odysseus homecoming part based on her own personal experiences of an attempt by encroaching suitors in Sicily to usurp the kingship in her father's absence, and murder her brothers.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An interesting re-interprtation of the Odyssey story but the book lacks the depth I was looking for. Also the notion of the existence of a lineage from Homer down to Nausica's time was not well developed and left me rather dissatisfied. Other readers may see it differently
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