[ARC] Review #16: The Iliad

the iliadSeparators

In a companion volume to his award-winning adaptation of The Odyssey, the incomparable graphic novelist Gareth Hinds masterfully adapts Homer’s classic wartime epic. 

More than three thousand years ago, two armies faced each other in an epic battle that rewrote history and came to be known as the Trojan War. The Iliad, Homer’s legendary account of this nine-year ordeal, is considered the greatest war story of all time and one of the most important works of Western literature. In this stunning graphic novel adaptation — a thoroughly researched and artfully rendered masterwork — renowned illustrator Gareth Hinds captures all the grim glory of Homer’s epic. Dynamic illustrations take readers directly to the plains of Troy, into the battle itself, and lay bare the complex emotions of the men, women, and gods whose struggles fueled the war and determined its outcome. This companion volume to Hinds’s award-winning adaptation of The Odyssey features notes, maps, a cast of characters, and other tools to help readers understand all the action and drama of Homer’s epic.

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Can I just really quick say how stunning the artwork in this book was? And I have an ARC, so that means that it isn’t even colored in yet! Now, that would be a pretty sight to see.

If you—like me—have no clue what the Iliad actually is, this graphic novel is probably for you. I feel like, if you’re just starting to learn about this story and everything going on, it’d probably be wiser to see it in pictures first so you can grasp for an idea of what’s happening.

Gareth Hinds did a phenomenal job with the artwork, as I’ve already stated. But not only that, he also really captured the story. I was very confused in some parts, but that was mainly because it’s a little hard to follow along when short speech bubbles are suddenly flipped to long ones. On top of that, I felt that it was a little difficult to know where to look. Some of the pages had two-page artwork, and I was a little confused at where to start on those too.

But other than that, I felt like the artwork really made up for the other things. All in all, I’d rate this Graphic Novel a solid 3/5 stars.

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dsc_0353Gareth Hinds is the creator of critically-acclaimed graphic novels based on literary classics, including Beowulf (which Publisher’s Weekly called a “mixed-media gem”), King Lear (which Booklist named one of the top 10 graphic novels for teens), The Merchant of Venice (which Kirkus called “the standard that all others will strive to meet” for Shakespeare adaptation), The Odyssey (which garnered four starred reviews and a spot on ten “best of 2010” lists), Romeo and Juliet (which Kirkus called “spellbinding”), and Macbeth (which the New York Times called “stellar” and “a remarkably faithful rendering”). Gareth is a recipient of the Boston Public Library’s “Literary Lights for Children” award. His books can be found in bookstores and English classrooms across the country, and his illustrations have appeared in such diverse venues as the Society of Illustrators, the New York Historical Society, and over a dozen published video games.

Gareth lives in the Washington DC area.

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