I’m a pretty avid fan of mythology, though my specific love happens to be for those of the Greek variety. Naturally, when I saw this book was available I coulnd’t help myself. Classical Mythology by James Shepherd is pretty amazing. It does follow a very similar pattern to many other books detailing the same stories—and believe me, there are a lot of them—but where the books I’m used to really only focus on one specific set of stories, I felt that this one encompassed a great many more that just made the reading experience a lot more enjoyable.
I was over the moon when I got about halfway through the book and realized that the stories surrounding Troy were included in this collection of mythology tales. Troy has long since been a story that I’ve absolutely adored for the characters and the tragedy and ironically enough I’ve never really found many books that include the tale. I recall all the usual very strong emotions I feel for the characters of Troy once more and enjoyed every second of it.
Admittedly, this collection did have one thing that I found myself vaguely annoyed by, though this is purely on a personal level and I don’t imagine it irritating everyone else. I didn’t like the fact that Shepherd chose to refer to the gods as their Roman names. Jupiter, Venus, Pluto, and Neptune are just not the ways I want to read about Zeus, Aphrodite, Hades, and Poseidon. I’ve avoided Roman mythology so much so that I genuinely found myself somewhat confused at first and, had I not already known many of these stories, might not have remembered which god was which. Even Persephone, who is one of my favorites—partially because her name is similar to mine and thus really cool—becomes Proserpine.
So while I love and deeply appreciated reading this book, I imagine I’ll probably stick with the ones that use the Greek names for some of the stories.
I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.