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Treasury of Greek Mythology: Classic Stories of Gods, Goddesses, Heroes and Monsters

by Donna Jo Napoli

School Library Journal Gr 5-9-Wise, witty, and thoroughly entrancing, this collection showcases 25 tales sumptuously illustrated with luminous, jewel-toned paintings. At once eloquent and elemental, poetic yet contemporary, these deftly written selections gloriously regale the characters' legendary adventures while vivifying them with personality. (Oct.) (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

School Library Journal Gr 5 Up-Wise, witty, worldly, and thoroughly entrancing, this collection presents 25 tales showcasing the Greek pantheon's major players. At once eloquent and elemental, poetic and contemporary, these deftly written selections gloriously regale the characters' legendary adventures while vivifying them with personality. Balit's stunning paintings feature luminous colors, rich patterns, and star-infused motifs. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly Napoli brings new life to the familiar stories of Greek mythology in this intimate compilation, telling each tale with grace, clarity, and emotion. When Demeter mourns her missing daughter, "Her cheeks grew hollow, her body gaunt. Greens turned brown.... Hunger twisted the innards of every living creature." Through the brief but vivid retellings, readers will better understand such figures as Apollo, Ares, Dionysus, and Helen, while sidebars contextualize the stories. Balit's majestic and sinuous spreads mimic the drama and passion of the legends. Ages 8-12. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Book list This large, opulent-looking volume introduces 25 major figures in Greek mythology. A typical entry opens with a dramatic, double-page illustration and continues with four pages that include descriptive and narrative text, a large illustration, a sidebar, a decorative border, and plenty of white space. The informative sidebars are illustrated with small photos, digital images, and reproductions of period art and artifacts. With so many figures to introduce in a limited space, powerful stories sometimes feel overly summarized. Still, Napoli writes in a lively, often colorful style, sparked by such comments as, Wickedness deserves to crawl through the slime. Balit's illustrations feature formal design, brilliant colors, stylized figures, and repeated shapes. The poster-like, double-page pictures are particularly strong. Rounding out the compendium, the excellent back matter includes a map of Greece, a timeline, an annotated, illustrated cast of characters, a bibliographic note, and lists of recommended books and websites. A fine addition to mythology collections.--Phelan, Carolyn Copyright 2010 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright American Library Association. Used with permission.

School Library Journal Gr 5-9-Wise, witty, and thoroughly entrancing, this august collection is ideal for those who want more from their mythology. Beginning with the beginning ("Gaia: Mother Earth" and "Uranus: Father Heaven"), Napoli presents 25 tales introducing the major players of the Greek pantheon along with an assortment of celebrated heroes and mortals (including Perseus, Heracles, Jason, and Helen). At once eloquent and elemental, these lyrically written portraits deftly detail each character's origins, realm of power, and legendary story lines. Filled with sensual imagery, the language is poetic, yet balanced by amusing asides and wry observations that add a contemporary, almost conversational accessibility. The accounts gloriously regale the familiar adventures of these deities and champions, while imbuing them with personality. For example, Hades, "spitting mad" at being confined in Cronus's belly, bursts out ready and willing to take on the Titans: "roaring into war beside his siblings felt natural-like butter on a burn-it felt fat and rich and right." Again and again, Napoli encourages readers to trawl these tales for greater truths: Theseus is portrayed not only as a monster-slaying hero, but also as a man who gradually gains the wisdom needed to become a just ruler. Stunning stylized paintings featuring luminous colors, rich patterns, and star-infused motifs add depth and drama to the text. Full-spread images introduce the characters, incorporating their iconic symbols and details of their dominions, while smaller insets provide glimpses of the action. Interesting sidebars appear throughout, providing historical, scientific, and cultural information. A must-have for most collections.-Joy Fleishhacker, School Library Journal (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.