Friday, January 01, 2010

1. HELEN OF TROY - Margaret George

Jinx, don't read this until you have finished the book. I want another opinion.

Off topic: Margaret George lives five hours away from me. How do I know this? A friend of a friend told me, and she said that I should talk to Ms. George about researching historical figures for my own novel. A bit late, but very kind, nonetheless.

Though I am not sure if Ms. George would receive me. You see, while I admire her imaginative characters, drawing them from a word on a papyrus or the dried out pages of old parchment, her heroines sound exactly the same from book to book. Whether it is Helen of Troy, Cleopatra, or Mary of Scots, they are commanding, bitter, and bold. While we should expect this from leaders, I was disappointed to read the same character, once again.

However, the details of the Trojan War makes up for it. If you saw the movie, Troy, you know the characters, but the war actually lasted for almost a decade (or seven years, depending on the source). While the thrust of the war effort is to take back Helen, there are other reasons, as well. The Iliad and the Odyssey (another book on my "you should read" list) only tells of the fall of Achilles, I am told. This version shows the slow flush of anger as people are killed for Paris's love of Helen, and its effects on the royal family, as well as the couple.

Overall, I enjoyed reading about this woman who may never have existed, but whose fame has lasted for centuries.

3.75 out of 5.0 T-ROY Green Tea Vodkas.


Connie said...

You really hit the nail on the head when you said MG's heroines all sound the same way. Nonetheless, I think it works for the women she's chosen, most of the time.

Great review! Happy new year!


Jinx said...

Well, I finally posted by thoughts on Helen of Troy.
How funny that we both felt the main characters were similar. I haven't read Mary Queen of Scots but I'll be very upset if Mary Magdalene is one of the same.

Thanks for letting me be a part of this.
It was fun!

Kristin Dodge said...

Very fun! Now, if we could plan more read-a-thons. Hmmm...