Monday, October 12, 2009

Firebrand - Book Review

by Marion Zimmer Bradley
Penguin Books 2009

I have only read one book by Marion Zimmer Bradley. Mists of Avalon. I think I read this book in the mid 1980s - around 25 years ago. I cannot rememebr what it is about. The point is that I have never read any of her other books since that first one. Until now.

I have just finished reading Firebrand. It is a modern retelling of the Trojan war, based on the Illiad and the Odyssey. It is also written as if it is from Kassandra's point of view. Princess Kassandra, who was a prophetess, was also the daughter of King Priam of Troy.

I have never been able to read the Iliad and the Odyssey in the original translations. The language was just too old fashioned. But this book follows the story in modern english and I really enjoyed it. Yes this is a chunky book (600 pages) but it is well worth the read.

The characters are written so that you cannot help but be become involved with them. We follow Kassandra through her life until she is roughly aged 23. The Trojan war actually began after Kassandra's brother Paris stole his bride (Helen of Sparta) from her husband Menelaus.

If you want to know what really happened in Troy, over 3000 years ago, then this is the book to read. I could not put it down.


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