Title: Mythos – The Greek myths retold
Author: Stephen Fry
While it is still fresh in mind I believe this to be the best moment to tell you a little of a book I managed to finish this afternoon.
As you can see above, the book I’m referring to is ‘Mythos’. My fascination with the Greek history (or mythology rather) started when I first saw the movie of Troy. How Achilles, son of a mortal king and a sea nymph was to become a hero in the overthrow of the city of Troy. After the movie I carried on with my life, as one does, and then a few years later I came across a book called ‘Circe’ by Madeline Miller, which tells the story of one offspring of Helios. Once I finished that off I saw that she had written another book as well before this book ‘The Song of Achilles’. I added this to my collection, and that ultimately was the hook that led me to want to know more of the Greek Mythology.
What the book offers isn’t just one story line of one character (as with Circe or Song of Achilles, which were both terrific books as well), but rather the story of creation.
Everything started off from ‘chaos’ and became to what is known to us today (if it is Greek mythology that you believe in). In a way it has a big-bang element to it, where at first there was nothing, and then suddenly, slowly, some things came to being, from which came more and more and more.
As noted, it all started with ‘chaos’, then came the first and second order of beings, know also later as titans, then the gods. The gods then had a huge war with the titans (those that didn’t side with the gods), and they became the new rulers. Or first rulers, because at first the titans (before Kronos) only lived together, with not really one ruling party over all, but merely all ruling over their own domains.
However, I have already said too much, and you should rather read this up yourself.
Jumping ahead, the book teaches us how the 12 rulers of Olympus came about, how some of the gods and titans spent some of their lives, and also their interactions with different humans in different ages.
What I wish to emphasize is that the book is full of lessons, as much as it tells a story. I enjoyed the stories/myths very much, but also have gained by learning some wisdom from the mistakes that some have made in the book. Yes, even the perfect gods in the book were not without their flaws, and so you can walk away with some great insight.
Even if you simply just want to read another entertaining book, this will definitely fulfill that purpose. And, you who knows, maybe you will want to know even more after you turned the last page.
The book gives a solid introduction from the very beginning of how everything came to be. It gives us insight as to why certain animals, plants and other things have the name attached to them. It is very entertaining, and gives also some great lessons to some of the characters’ lives. The book is well written, and won’t lose the reader in any chapter, because it doesn’t jump around too much from one story to another, but rather starts with the foundation, and progresses as the events happened. The book deserves a strong 5/5 for what it offers the reader.