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Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths

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The bestselling compendium of ancient Greece’s timeless tales and towering figures of mythology from a classics expert.   The world of Greek mythology contains some of the most exciting and imaginative stories ever told. In Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths, bestselling author Bernard Evslin shares his passion for these fabulous tales and the eternal themes they The bestselling compendium of ancient Greece’s timeless tales and towering figures of mythology from a classics expert.   The world of Greek mythology contains some of the most exciting and imaginative stories ever told. In Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths, bestselling author Bernard Evslin shares his passion for these fabulous tales and the eternal themes they so beautifully express. In this accessible overview, you’ll get to know the iconic gods, heroes, and tragic figures: Zeus, the all-powerful king of the gods; Hera, his cunning and jealous wife; King Midas, whose touch could turn anything into gold; the sculptor Pygmalion, who falls in love with his own creation; and many more.   With each story, Evslin brings new life to these legendary characters and the magical world they inhabit. Translated into multiple languages, and with more than ten million copies sold, this invaluable resource has become a classic in itself.   Contains The gods - Zeus - Hera - Athene - Poseidon - Hades - Demeter - Birth of the twins - Artemis - Apollo - Sons of Apollo - Hermes - Hephaestus - Aphrodite Nature myths - Prometheus - Pandora - Phaethon - Orpheus - Narcissus and Echo - Eros and Psyche - Arion Demigods. - Perseus - Daedalus - Theseus - Atalanta Fables - Midas - Pygmalion


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The bestselling compendium of ancient Greece’s timeless tales and towering figures of mythology from a classics expert.   The world of Greek mythology contains some of the most exciting and imaginative stories ever told. In Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths, bestselling author Bernard Evslin shares his passion for these fabulous tales and the eternal themes they The bestselling compendium of ancient Greece’s timeless tales and towering figures of mythology from a classics expert.   The world of Greek mythology contains some of the most exciting and imaginative stories ever told. In Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths, bestselling author Bernard Evslin shares his passion for these fabulous tales and the eternal themes they so beautifully express. In this accessible overview, you’ll get to know the iconic gods, heroes, and tragic figures: Zeus, the all-powerful king of the gods; Hera, his cunning and jealous wife; King Midas, whose touch could turn anything into gold; the sculptor Pygmalion, who falls in love with his own creation; and many more.   With each story, Evslin brings new life to these legendary characters and the magical world they inhabit. Translated into multiple languages, and with more than ten million copies sold, this invaluable resource has become a classic in itself.   Contains The gods - Zeus - Hera - Athene - Poseidon - Hades - Demeter - Birth of the twins - Artemis - Apollo - Sons of Apollo - Hermes - Hephaestus - Aphrodite Nature myths - Prometheus - Pandora - Phaethon - Orpheus - Narcissus and Echo - Eros and Psyche - Arion Demigods. - Perseus - Daedalus - Theseus - Atalanta Fables - Midas - Pygmalion

30 review for Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths

  1. 4 out of 5

    Bren fall in love with the sea.

    “Whoever takes me captive won't live long enough to enjoy it” ― Bernard Evslin, Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths If you are seeking stories of Greek Mythology, might I suggest this wonderful little book?! It is a gem. And it is packed full of adventure, fierceness and fun. It will take you through all the Gods....their stories, their individual sagas and adventures. It is a timeless read that I adore. This is not a complicated book. And if you know nothing of Greek Mythology or do and ju “Whoever takes me captive won't live long enough to enjoy it” ― Bernard Evslin, Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myths If you are seeking stories of Greek Mythology, might I suggest this wonderful little book?! It is a gem. And it is packed full of adventure, fierceness and fun. It will take you through all the Gods....their stories, their individual sagas and adventures. It is a timeless read that I adore. This is not a complicated book. And if you know nothing of Greek Mythology or do and just want to know more, it makes a great book to read. They are all in here. And there are so many stories all brimming with excitement and fun. I first read this as a child but periodically read it again, purely for how much fun it is. It never loses its appeal. It's short as well so you don't get bogged down. But this does not read as a text book which it is not. And the writing is not dry at all. These are all short stories, all in one book and each story deals with a different adventure. The book starts where the reader is introduced to each individual God and and each individual Goddess and then goes on from there. Highly recommended if one has an interest in Mythology.

  2. 5 out of 5

    PurplyCookie

    Obviously written for a younger audience (compared to the compliation of Hamilton & Bulfinch) since most of the more obscure Greek myths (and in many cases, the more interesting ones) are left out entirely; of the myths which are included, only one version is presented of each, obscuring the fact that in many cases there were multiple versions of each myth, each version interesting and useful in its own right. Yet with simple language and direct verse, he quite excellently brings out a depth in Obviously written for a younger audience (compared to the compliation of Hamilton & Bulfinch) since most of the more obscure Greek myths (and in many cases, the more interesting ones) are left out entirely; of the myths which are included, only one version is presented of each, obscuring the fact that in many cases there were multiple versions of each myth, each version interesting and useful in its own right. Yet with simple language and direct verse, he quite excellently brings out a depth in the characters and a second meaning in stories which have rung hollow or been lost by other, supposedly great poets. The earth breeds giants and ogres of indescribable horror -- the heavens hold omnipotent gods and goddesses, abounding in courage, strength and wisdom. Among the selected stories were that of: Perseus shows his courage in slaying Medusa and rescuing Andromeda while Theseus displays quick thinking in destroying many monsters including the Minotaur. Readers learn a new side of Daedalus, the father of Icarus, who invented the labyrinth for King Minos. The final stories of Atalanta, King Midas, and Pygmalion teaches the universal themes of love and greed which still abound in modern society. While this is not as sophisticated as Edith Hamilton's "Mythology" or as academic as other texts, this one adapts the Greek tales in a very reader-friendly way. One can easily get a sense of the drama, intensity and personalities of these ancient heroes and anti-heroes. The long list of vocabulary written in the back is quite accessible to the first time reader of Greek mythology plus shows the clear link between the Greeks and modern civilization. Book Details: Title Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Myth Author Bernard Evslin Reviewed By Purplycookie

  3. 4 out of 5

    Martin

    The birth of the monster is attended by rage, and that is what makes him monstrous, the wrath of a god or, more often, a goddess carving a dangerous, ugly form for itself out of living flesh. How we became the creatures of Light and Darkness These Greek myths are drenched in sunlight, and this sunlight is more than weather; it is a moral quality. Heroes love to cavort in the open air, to fly, to cleave the burning sea, race on the hills, hunt over the fields. But monsters belong to darkness. Where The birth of the monster is attended by rage, and that is what makes him monstrous, the wrath of a god or, more often, a goddess carving a dangerous, ugly form for itself out of living flesh. How we became the creatures of Light and Darkness These Greek myths are drenched in sunlight, and this sunlight is more than weather; it is a moral quality. Heroes love to cavort in the open air, to fly, to cleave the burning sea, race on the hills, hunt over the fields. But monsters belong to darkness. Where the Gorgons live it is always winter. Cerberus, the three-headed dog, guards the gate of dark Tartarus, the land of the dead. Scylla and Echidne, the dreaded serpent-women, lurk in a sea-cave waiting to swallow the tides, make shipwrecks, catch sailors and crack their bones. The Minotaur howls in a maze of shadows. The monsters wait in darkness, and when heroes hunt them, they must come in out of the sun, and the ordeal starts right there. So we see a great religious theme—the eternal struggle between the powers of Light and the powers of Darkness embodied in these simple stories in a way that has branded itself on man’s consciousness forever. Discover the ancient Gods; Zeus Hera Athene Poseidon Hades Demeter Atremis Apollo Sons of Apollo Hermes Hephaestus Aphrodite Explore the nature myths; Prometheus Pandora Phaethon Orpheus Narcissus and Echo Eros and Psyche Arion Be introduced to the Demigods; Perseus Daedalus Theseus Atalanta Enjoy the Fables; Midas Pygmalion A family quarrel or civil war! In Greek mythology heroes and monsters alike are spawned by the gods. The Gorgons, those snake-haired horrors, are grand-daughters of Rhea, mother of Zeus, which makes them cousins of their arch-enemy, Perseus. In other words, both good and evil come from the gods. Good is the divine enemy expressing itself through men of high deeds. Evil is the same energy, twisted. When hero confronts monster in these myths it is apt to be a family quarrel. Enjoy

  4. 5 out of 5

    Gabby

    This is an interesting book about Greek myths, gods, goddesses, demigods who become heroes, and deadly monsters such as the Minotaur and Medusa. One myth tells the story of Zeus’s father, Cronos, who killed his own father Uranus in order to take his throne. However, Uranus tells him that one of his sons would overthrow him one day. So Cronos swallows his children as they are born: Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades, and Poseidon. But he doesn’t know that Zeus made a drink that would force Cronos to vo This is an interesting book about Greek myths, gods, goddesses, demigods who become heroes, and deadly monsters such as the Minotaur and Medusa. One myth tells the story of Zeus’s father, Cronos, who killed his own father Uranus in order to take his throne. However, Uranus tells him that one of his sons would overthrow him one day. So Cronos swallows his children as they are born: Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades, and Poseidon. But he doesn’t know that Zeus made a drink that would force Cronos to vomit up his kids. Afterwards, the six of them defeat him and Zeus becomes the king of the gods. Another story talks about a very clever demigod named Theseus who uses his enemies’ strength to defeat them. There is also the story of the heroic demigod Perseus, who beheaded the Medusa in order to kill the evil King Polydectes of Sephiros. I really enjoyed reading this book and learning more about Greek mythology. The most interesting thing I learned from the book, is how some of the events/characters became part of the English language: One example is the story of Echo, a nymph who distracts Hera so she wouldn’t catch Zeus with other maidens. But when Hera finds out about Echo’s trickery, she curses her to only repeat the last words that are said to her. That’s how we get the word ‘echo’ today. In another myth, after Athena wins a weaving contest against a Lydian girl named Arachne, the goddess turns her into a spider. That’s where the word ‘arachnid’ comes from.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Knowlton Murphy

    This was a lot of fun. I'm aware it is more of an introduction, but Evslin's love for the mythology is absolutely contagious. I didn't care about Greek mythology much in high school, so a lot of my familiarity with it comes from Percy Jackson, discovered later in life. This means several of the stories were familiar, but I loved hearing them with greater depth. I really had fun with Theseus, but Pygmalion may have been my favorite. With Pygmalion, I sensed traces of the too-good-to-be-true-ishne This was a lot of fun. I'm aware it is more of an introduction, but Evslin's love for the mythology is absolutely contagious. I didn't care about Greek mythology much in high school, so a lot of my familiarity with it comes from Percy Jackson, discovered later in life. This means several of the stories were familiar, but I loved hearing them with greater depth. I really had fun with Theseus, but Pygmalion may have been my favorite. With Pygmalion, I sensed traces of the too-good-to-be-true-ishness of Christianity. It felt like C. S. Lewis was glancing up from a gigantic book and a comically large cup of tea and winking at me with the good humor of a boisterous butcher.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jess

    Loved the way that the author introduced each character & told their stories. My only complaint is that I wish there were more stories included in this novel. It just felt a bit short.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Abby Gonnella

    Pretty great, has a lot of well-known and important stories.

  8. 4 out of 5

    David Stephens

    For anyone wanting an introductory level account of some of the most well known Greek myths, this book should suffice. It provides brief overviews of many of the main gods of the pantheon as well as some nature myths and more detailed accounts of the demi-gods. Some of the stories even bother to give character motivations that go beyond the incessant pride, jealousy, and lust of the gods. Of course, some of the myths seem maddening and random while others are complicated and quite beautiful. I ha For anyone wanting an introductory level account of some of the most well known Greek myths, this book should suffice. It provides brief overviews of many of the main gods of the pantheon as well as some nature myths and more detailed accounts of the demi-gods. Some of the stories even bother to give character motivations that go beyond the incessant pride, jealousy, and lust of the gods. Of course, some of the myths seem maddening and random while others are complicated and quite beautiful. I have always been particularly fond of the story of Orpheus, which is well told here. The book is unfortunately frustrating in several ways. Many figures get mentioned and then are quickly forgotten or never fully explained. Hestia, for instance, gets skipped over while Atlas, Hercules, Tantalus, and Sisyphus only make brief appearances. Their stories are just as important as the others in this collection for building a foundational knowledge of Greek mythology. There are some silly mistakes as well. Daedalus seems to be incorrectly labeled as a demi-god, and sometimes names change without warning or clarification. Uranus inexplicably becomes Oranos. I know it goes beyond the scope of what this book is trying to do, but it would be nice if Evslin would explain the importance of these myths beyond simply stating they had a profound effect on him as a child. If this book is to be used by students, I find they often like to know why stories like these are still important in addition to the stories themselves.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Georgia

    This one is honestly also a five out of five! With Greek Gods, myths and why things the way they are, and the heroes from these mighty tales. I think this one is also very, very, VERY well written. To be completely truthful; I didn´t TECHNICALLY read this. I listened to a voice audio of the VA Todd Haberkorn reading it. It was because I couldn´t get the books. But sometimes ignoring the voice and focusing on the story. I loved it! There is a lot I know about Greek Mythology. I just learned more, This one is honestly also a five out of five! With Greek Gods, myths and why things the way they are, and the heroes from these mighty tales. I think this one is also very, very, VERY well written. To be completely truthful; I didn´t TECHNICALLY read this. I listened to a voice audio of the VA Todd Haberkorn reading it. It was because I couldn´t get the books. But sometimes ignoring the voice and focusing on the story. I loved it! There is a lot I know about Greek Mythology. I just learned more, in an interesting way. So to those who haven´t really read mythology... This one is a really good one to start off reading. Also the Percy Jackson guide to Greek Mythology (BOTH OF ´EM. SOO GOOD!)

  10. 5 out of 5

    OwlBeReading

    Had to read this for school and I thought that it was pretty good. I love Greek mythology so there's a plus. Not terrible but not great. The writing was a little strange but I liked how quick the chapters were. My favorite stories were about Aphrodite. Had to read this for school and I thought that it was pretty good. I love Greek mythology so there's a plus. Not terrible but not great. The writing was a little strange but I liked how quick the chapters were. My favorite stories were about Aphrodite.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Erika

    A nice little book about Greek mythology. Most of the stories are quite short, which I liked. Evslin Chose several to expand (the ‘Demigods’ section), and while they were nice, I wish he would have chosen others. My favorite story was the Athene one and how spiders came to be!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Richie

    Since I read this book for a class I won’t rate it but I did enjoy the last story a nice ending to a book where people get eaten on the first page.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    Interesting, insomuch as I happen to be interested in Greek mythology. The tales are hyper short & are easy to understand. (Nice when you're a younger reader or someone who's just now being introduced to Greek mythology.) No comparison between the Greek Gods & the Roman Gods (who were "borrowed" from the Greeks). Very light on the information. I didn't feel like I had to think hard & I didn't learn anything new, unfortunately. That said, I would recommend this to those starting out in their Greek Interesting, insomuch as I happen to be interested in Greek mythology. The tales are hyper short & are easy to understand. (Nice when you're a younger reader or someone who's just now being introduced to Greek mythology.) No comparison between the Greek Gods & the Roman Gods (who were "borrowed" from the Greeks). Very light on the information. I didn't feel like I had to think hard & I didn't learn anything new, unfortunately. That said, I would recommend this to those starting out in their Greek mythology.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Keith Landry

    During my senior year of High School, the nuns required us to translate portions of the Odyssey from Latin. From this I developed a strong interest in Greek Mythology. For about a year, I wrestled with the worlds described in the Odyssey, the Iliad and by Bulfinch. Then I moved on to other things. I'm back now! What great fun. For the youngsters out there who have not read about Poseidon, Apollo, Hermes, Aphrodite, Eros, Perseus, Midas and the Demigods, I encourage you to see where the inspirati During my senior year of High School, the nuns required us to translate portions of the Odyssey from Latin. From this I developed a strong interest in Greek Mythology. For about a year, I wrestled with the worlds described in the Odyssey, the Iliad and by Bulfinch. Then I moved on to other things. I'm back now! What great fun. For the youngsters out there who have not read about Poseidon, Apollo, Hermes, Aphrodite, Eros, Perseus, Midas and the Demigods, I encourage you to see where the inspiration for The Lord of the Rings, The Game of Thrones and others came from. Your welcome.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Alyssa White

    Who doesn't love the stories of the Greeks? This book only makes me enjoy them more. More details behind the myths and heros that I was always fascinated with and opened my eyes to one I knew so little about. Loved it. I wish there was more! Who doesn't love the stories of the Greeks? This book only makes me enjoy them more. More details behind the myths and heros that I was always fascinated with and opened my eyes to one I knew so little about. Loved it. I wish there was more!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Pretty interesting stories. The Greek gods seem very promiscuous, vengeful, foolhardy and jealous. I like how the tales are linked with natural phenomena, like summer and winter, spiders, crows, stars etc. They embody pretty fascinating imaginations and wisdom people had thousands of years ago.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Bryce Beale

    One of the most difficult parts about studying Greek mythology, in my opinion, is the diversity of contradicting stories. I suppose that is the nature of myth. Maybe I am spoiled as a Christian, having a defined canon that is internally consistent! This book ignores that difficulty and presents some of the key figures and stories without very much caveating. In this way, I found it a really helpful introduction or reminder of some of the key points. As to the myths themselves, I side with Socrates One of the most difficult parts about studying Greek mythology, in my opinion, is the diversity of contradicting stories. I suppose that is the nature of myth. Maybe I am spoiled as a Christian, having a defined canon that is internally consistent! This book ignores that difficulty and presents some of the key figures and stories without very much caveating. In this way, I found it a really helpful introduction or reminder of some of the key points. As to the myths themselves, I side with Socrates--if someone were genuinely to accept these gods as their gods, what hope would there be for morality? If Zeus cannot be faithful to Hera, why should anyone else be to their spouse?

  18. 5 out of 5

    Seth

    Very fun!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Abigail

    my favorite of these myths was theseus... but perhaps im biased

  20. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    Not very well written but I did enjoy the stories that were told in the book.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Claire Cosgrove

    Read this book with my students! Greek mythology isn’t really my thing but they were hooked!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Trevor

    Personal response One of my favorite stories in the book was Hephaestus, the Smith God the god who cast off a cliff, for being too ugly ,but was taken back when his gift as a smith was known to Olympus. As I read each story the ideas the greeks lived by became more clear. Plot The plot of the book is a series of old greek myths that taught morals and how things came to be. There was a lot of diversity with each story some being about those who are punished for loving themselves too much or some be Personal response One of my favorite stories in the book was Hephaestus, the Smith God the god who cast off a cliff, for being too ugly ,but was taken back when his gift as a smith was known to Olympus. As I read each story the ideas the greeks lived by became more clear. Plot The plot of the book is a series of old greek myths that taught morals and how things came to be. There was a lot of diversity with each story some being about those who are punished for loving themselves too much or some being about how greed destroys us. The story of Orpheus is about a musician poet blessed by Apollo with the moral of his story being don’t look back at your mistakes and don’t listen to doubt. The story of Hephaestus The Smith is about the ugly smith god who was cast out at birth by his mother Hera And was raised by Thetis a naiad. Characterization Hades is a greedy god but is slow to his temper near the end of the story hades show his capacity for kindness to Persephone along with his patience and eagerness to please. Poseidon is a kind and joyful god but is very greedy . Hephaestus is a humble ugly god with the gifts of the craft who forgave his mother even after throwing him off a cliff and birth. Orpheus was a legendary musician and poet who could charm anything with his lyre but in his pride tried to get his wife back from hades. Impact of setting The setting affected the story very little as it was a series of greek myths and it never defined a specific place. What this affected was ,humans were quickly punished for their misdeeds by demigods and gods. In the time period of the greeks oracles had alot of influence and power almost equal to kings. Recommendation I recommend this to young adults that have an interest in mythology or just want a series of short stories because having background makes it easier to understand what is happening and the gods. I would recommend this to both genders because of the morals that they can teach and there are male and female characters in each story.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Diana (Bever) Barber

    If only I spoke and read Greek, but Bernard Evslin does/did. He did not originally set out to translate or tell any of these stories. He was only following in the classically trained footsteps of his uncle, and he fell in love with Greek stories along the way. This edition of the myths FELT real to me. There are so many Greek Heroes/Gods/Monsters books out there, and most of them feel stilted or overly sanitized. This one told it like it is without being overly graphic. Bravo, Mr. Evslin, and th If only I spoke and read Greek, but Bernard Evslin does/did. He did not originally set out to translate or tell any of these stories. He was only following in the classically trained footsteps of his uncle, and he fell in love with Greek stories along the way. This edition of the myths FELT real to me. There are so many Greek Heroes/Gods/Monsters books out there, and most of them feel stilted or overly sanitized. This one told it like it is without being overly graphic. Bravo, Mr. Evslin, and thank you for translating this in your words. Now to convince the TECS South Librarian that she should let me keep this one...Ah, but for the youth I shall let it go on the library shelves! I can always check it out again.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Caroline Greyling

    As a writer, I’ve always had a soft spot for mythology, especially Greek mythology. These are the bones of many stories, the roots from which modern tales spring and the well from which many writers draw their inspiration. Bernard Evslin tells the stories of gods, goddesses, heroes and monsters in a swift, straight to the point manner. This isn’t a flowery novel with lavish descriptions and it often breaks the ‘show don’t tell’ golden rule, but for the subject matter at hand, it is effective. Eac As a writer, I’ve always had a soft spot for mythology, especially Greek mythology. These are the bones of many stories, the roots from which modern tales spring and the well from which many writers draw their inspiration. Bernard Evslin tells the stories of gods, goddesses, heroes and monsters in a swift, straight to the point manner. This isn’t a flowery novel with lavish descriptions and it often breaks the ‘show don’t tell’ golden rule, but for the subject matter at hand, it is effective. Each one of the short stories could have been spun into a novel of it’s own, but the purpose here was clearly to give the reader a taste and basic understanding of some of Greek mythology’s most famous characters and adventures. And Bernard Evslin has succeeded marvelously.

  25. 4 out of 5

    B

    Obnoxious oversimplifications but it fits in your back pocket and is succinct enough to sneak in a story in a waiting room or on your lunch break.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Britney Wolfe

    I found this extremely entertaining. A wonderful book to wind down with at bedtime.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Tammy Schoen

    Pretty simple... But provides some of the basic stories of mythology.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Kariman Hassan

    Ridiculously over simplified but a good introduction to Greek mythology if you know nothing about it

  29. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    A great compilation of classic Greek myths! Some of them are very familiar, others not so much - but all were fun to listen to via the audiobook. A fun, quick book.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Tara

    even darker and grittier than I remember. Now I'm ready to reread all the Percy Jackson books (!!) even darker and grittier than I remember. Now I'm ready to reread all the Percy Jackson books (!!)

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