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The Tale of Troy: Retold from the Ancient Authors (Puffin Classics) Paperback – December 1, 1995
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About the Author
Roger Lancelyn Green was born in 1918 and lived in Oxford and at his family home in Cheshire, which the Greens had owned for more than 900 years. He loved storytelling and was fascinated by traditional fairy tales, myths and legends from around the world. He was a professional actor, a librarian and a teacher. His retellings include Egyptian, Greek and Norse legends, plus a retelling of Robin Hood. He also wrote many books for adults, including a biography of his friend C. S. Lewis, creator of the The Chronicles of Narnia. Roger Lancelyn Green died in 1987.
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In 200 well illustrated pages THE FALL OF TROY narrates the events
which precipitated the great gathering of heroes to avenge the abduction of Helen. We experience the gory details of the plans, launching of the fleet, maritime challenges, plus the siege and ultimate sack of Troy. Inspired by Homer's ILIAD and ODYESSY and Virgil's AENEAD this admirable tapestry of Greek justice and injustice coincidentally reveals the all-too human qualities of the immortals, who casually or angrily intervene in the affairs of mankind.
Green's style offers his readers clarity amidst the plethora of separate tales, since he understands the complex ramifications of psychology: the underlying motives of love, sacrifice, lust, revenge and blind ambition. Real drama occurs when two human antagonists are championed by two opposing gods with their own selfish agendas. There is no perfect justice, however, for in the end only Zeus can decide the victor in these mighty struggles and even he is often prejudiced. The storyline is augmented by authentic illustrations which reflect the style of Greek vase painting. One suspects that the author deeply misses the Golden Age of Hellas, when warriors were bold and ingenious for the sake of women of surpassing beauty.
Roger Lancelyn Green writes as one who has spent a lifetime researching this story. And he did, in fact, do just that. The fact that he took his massive research and uncanny writing skills and penned a story for children does not in any way lessen the impact of his contribution to Greek myth. Anyone can read this book. It's on everyone's level and is presented in such a wonderful way that the educated and uneducated alike can enjoy it.
Needless to say, many of the names in the book are rather foreign sounding, and unless you're Greek mythology/history expert, it may be hard to keep track. One particularly confusing part for me was when the author spoke of Paris's brothers, one of whom was Deiphobus, who married Helen after Paris. Nine pages later (in the Puffin Classics edition), we read that in the course of the narrative, "Priam led the way with Queen Hecuba and their only surviving son Deiphobus." (118) This is said without any mention between these two passages of the demise of Deiphobus. In fact, several pages later we see him alive. So it can be very confusing, and seemingly contradictory. But this I think is a minor point, and it's still an enjoyable book well worth reading more than once.
The story is about the war between the Trojans and the Greeks and how the Trojans lost the war. The story takes place in ancient Greece and Troy. The plot takes place in ancient Greek times, and it starts mentioning the events before the Trojan War. The most important characters of the book are Achilles, Paris, Hector, and Helen. One day three Goddesses came down to earth from Mount Olympus to talk to Paris, the goddesses were Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite. They all gave him different offers that would benefit him. If he took one of the goddesses offers, the goddess would receive a golden apple. Paris took Aphrodite's offer which was that he would be with the most beautiful girl on Earth, which was Helen from Sparta. Helen was already married to the king of Sparta, Menelaus. Paris went to Sparta with his brother Hector to celebrate, but it was all a trap. On his way back to Troy, Paris kidnapped Helen. When Menelaus found out what Paris had done, he decides to declare war against Troy. This was the event that caused the Trojan War.
Menelaus told his brother Agamemnon to help him out at war, Agamemnon agreed. In a couple of days one thousand and thirteen ships were on their way to Troy to fight the war. Achilles, the great warrior, didn't go to help his king Menelaus fight in the war, he went so people would remember his name after the war. Achilles was considered as the greatest hero and fighter of Greece. They got to the shore of Troy and camped in tents in the shore. During the first nine years of war there were many battles and many lay dead in the sand. The most important event that occurred on the nine years of war was the death of the Prince of Troy, Hector, and the death of Patroclus who was Achilles' cousin. Patroclus died in a battle against Hector, he resisted but only one of them got out alive, in this case it was Hector. When Achilles found out the news, he didn't want to live anymore, he was depressed and he didn't know what to do. Achilles' mother came down from mount Olympus and gave him new raiment so he could fight Hector. Achilles went to the walls of Troy and challenged Hector into a duel. Achilles won the battle and Hector laid dead near Troy. When the tenth year was approaching Paris surprised Achilles and killed him with his bow and arrow. Then the Greeks planed a strategy to enter the walls of Troy and conquer it. They built a wooden horse and left it as a gift. Then the Trojans received it and they located the horse behind the Trojan walls. Then the night came and all the Greeks came out of the wooden horse conquering Troy and burning and destroying the homes of people, they killed the king and Prince Paris. The Greeks were successful over the Trojans after ten long years of war.
In my personal opinion, I thought that The Tale of Troy was a very good book and a very exciting one as well. I liked the scenes when the war started and when the battles in it occurred. The battle between Hector and Achilles was one of my favorite events in the book. I like the part when the author mentions: "Hector fell stunned to the earth, and was carried out of the battle in a chariot." I like this quote because it mentions how Achilles dragged Hectors body back to the shore in the meaning of revenge because of what he did to Patroclus. The plot of the book was very well done and very well put together. I also liked the strategy of the wooden horse to enter the walls of Tory and then conquer the city. Besides being a good and exciting book, it was also interesting to read because of how the author described the events and the descriptive word choices the author made.
This book tells many historic events of ancient Greek mythology. Al though it is not a true war because it is a part of mythology, it has been one very important event and has been narrated as a part of Greek history. The book might have mentioned similar aspects of what the allied civilizations did in ancient times. If there was a conflict between two powerful civilizations, they would get other civilizations to join them and help in war. It also demonstrated how wars may had happened in ancient Greek times. It illustrates how wars could had developed and what the other civilizations did in those cases.
The Tale of Troy is a very important book that talks about very important things of ancient Greece and its mythology. It has been a remarkable event of fictional events. It is a great book to read because of various reasons, the word choice, it is fun, it is interesting, and it has a great plot. I would personally recommend this book to readers that like to read books that include action scenes, wars, and battles. I would also recommend the book to people who like Greek mythology because it includes a lot of it. In general it is a good book that it is very well put together and is accessible to young readers.