• The Penelopiad: The Myth of Penelope and Odysseus
  • The Penelopiad: The Myth of Penelope and Odysseus
ISBN: 1423307771
EAN13: 9781423307778
Language: English
Release Date: Oct 21, 2005
Pages: 0
Dimensions: 0.87" H x 5.98" L x 5.2" W
Weight: 0.18 lbs.
Format: Compact Disc
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Book Overview

In Homer's account in The Odyssey, Penelope - wife of Odysseus and cousin of the beautiful Helen of Troy - is portrayed as the quintessential faithful wife, her story a salutary lesson through the ages. Left alone for twenty years when Odysseus goes off to fight in the Trojan war after the abduction of Helen, Penelope manages, in the face of scandalous rumours, to maintain the kingdom of Ithaca, bring up her wayward son, and keep over a hundred suitors at bay, simultaneously. When Odysseus finally comes home after enduring hardships, overcoming monsters and sleeping with goddesses, he kills her suitors and - curiously - twelve of her maids. In a splendid contemporary twist to the ancient story, Margaret Atwood has chosen to give the telling of it to Penelope and to her twelve hanged Maids, asking: What led to the hanging of the maids, and what was Penelope really up to? In Atwood's dazzling, playful retelling, the story becomes as wise and compassionate as it is haunting, and as wildly entertaining as it is disturbing. With wit and verve, drawing on the storytelling and poetic talent for which she herself is renowned, she gives Penelope new life and reality - and sets out to provide an answer to an ancient mystery.

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Book Reviews (15)

5
  |   15  reviews
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5
   Myth from a new perspective...
An excellent companion and retelling of The Odyssey from the perspective of Penelope. The writing is speedy, witty and thought-provoking. I am catching it up in a few hours. During our study on Myth, I plan to use this text with my high school students. Atwood does a powerful, female job at bringing the sublime voice to a genre dominated by men. In many ways, it does what C.S. Till We Have Faces does well with Lewis, but in a much more contemporary voice. Any student of mythology will enjoy it or learn to view the world of mythology from a different perspective.
 
5
   Pure Atwood!
Margaret Atwood has an incredible gift for weaving story and theme and putting it all into a remarkable fabric that never fails to absorb me.
 
4
   Lyrical and a fun read
Margaret Atwood has certainly a gift for poetry and prose. The Penelopiad is not a page turner, but I don 't need to enjoy a book like that. It is written from Penelope's perspective, who is currently living in Hades. There were quite a few places where I found myself laughing, especially the way Odysseus tried to get out of the fighting in the Trojan War. Additionally, Penelope's rivalry with Helen and her uneasy relationship with her mother-in-law made this an entertaining read, which wasn't easy considering some of the serious topics discussed in this book. It takes a lot of talent to pull something like this off.
 
5
   How can a mythological story sound so realistic?
I loved her interpretation of Penelope and the relationships between her handmaids, suitors, Odysseus and Helen. The characters are written as a family with all their flaws that come with them. Instead of background characters who are written as victims of circumstance, they are given life with their own. Everyone has their own dreams and motivations, and by bringing them to light, Atwood added her own layer of complexity and tragedy to the classic myth.
 
4
   the Penelopiad
Interesting take on the Odyssey, an enlightened view of what heroes leave behind, or rather what mythical heroes leave behind. After all, they're human!
 
5
   Loved the female POV for a story I have loved forever!
Re-visiting this old story from the female POV was so perfect. I think this is my favorite work by hers since her poem is The Siren's Song!
 
5
   Excellent!
A fun retelling of the old myth.
 
5
   Vintage Atwood
Margaret Atwood can not write a bad sentence. ) Whole paragraphs and books could start movements. This is an amazing retelling of Odysseus, but from the perspective of Penelope. I read this when the Cannon Gate myth series was first published, and today it had even more personal and heartfelt relevance. Within this, each person will find their own story.
 
5
   Myth from a new perspective...
An excellent companion and retells The Odyssey from the point of view of its author. The writing is engaging. I devoured it in a short time. I plan to use this text with my high school students. The strong, female voice is brought to a genre dominated by men. It does what C.S. does in a lot of ways. Lewis does with Till We Have Faces but in a different voice. Students of mythology will enjoy this or learn to look at the world from a different point of view.
 
3
   Be careful you get the Kindle edition you want
The novel version of The Penelopiad has been linked to the play version on Amazon, instead of the novel version. To get the novel from 2007, you need to click the little plus sign next to the kindle version. It's important that it doesn't say the play on the cover. I' ll have to see if they' ll give me the correct one.
 
12