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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful edition
The picture really doesn't do this edition of Homer wonderful poem justice (in fact it doesn't look like that at all!), a beautifully crafted book, it's a compact and attractively designed hardcover, definitely an edition to treasure, it emphasises and supports the epic quality of the prose.

The edition begins with an introduction by Seamus Heaney, who provides...
Published on 26 July 2008 by Jessica

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's a bit Circe-tous...
You cannot, in all seriousness, give a book of such historical importance three stars. But I thought I'd sound a different note for anyone who was thinking of 'trying a classic' - because it seems obviously more attractive to read The Odyssey over The Iliad. The latter is just one big battle, the former promises monsters and fantasy and peregrinatory adventures. But in...
Published on 21 Nov 2010 by Sporus


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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful edition, 26 July 2008
This review is from: The Odyssey (Everyman's Library Classics) (Hardcover)
The picture really doesn't do this edition of Homer wonderful poem justice (in fact it doesn't look like that at all!), a beautifully crafted book, it's a compact and attractively designed hardcover, definitely an edition to treasure, it emphasises and supports the epic quality of the prose.

The edition begins with an introduction by Seamus Heaney, who provides an inventive and insightful foreword, it in no way preaches as to how the work should be perceived, but it isn't as in-depth as the introduction by Peter Jones in the Penguin edition. The text follows and I found that I much preferred the layout to the Penguin, it's present far better, much more accessible, not just a clump of text but spaced in accordance with the rhythms in the piece, Heaney writes that Fitzgerald's translation `grounds it in the realms of modern English verse. His metre is loose iambic pentameter, which encompasses the natural pace and normal breathing rate of English verse.' This is evident when reading, the passages pass with great fluidity. Also included is a lengthy postscript by Fitzgerald that is very interesting.

I recommend this edition for people who want a nice edition, to place on their keeper self and enjoy again and again (and it's really very reasonable priced), if you're looking for a copy for study the Penguin is possibly more suitable as you're not going to want to write notes in the margin in this edition and it takes a more learned look at most aspect of the narrative, this is more concise. I'm sure you know something of the story so I won't bore with another synopsis but I will quote Heaney again on the books magnitude and resonance:

`...classical poetry is forever calling us towards the future: its perfected visions of reality propel the spirit forward into a joyful recognition rather than calling it back or keeping it on hold.'
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read this twice!, 8 Mar 2007
By 
Neil Sellen - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Odyssey (Everyman's Library Classics) (Hardcover)
The first time, read it for the tale.

The tale of the wandering of Odysseus and the trials, tribulations and adventures that befall him as he attempts to return to his rocky Ithaca and Penelope of the shapely ankles. It's a rollicking read. You'll be reminded of snippets of Sindbad, Aladdin, Watership Down, Captain Corelli's bloody Mandolin and so many other later works that involve a "homecoming". But this was the first.

The first time these stories about men, gods and monsters were all pulled together into a pretty coherent narrative. Most of the sub-tales such as Odysseus' trip into Hell, his encounter with monsters such as Polyphemus the Cyclops and the Harpies; with Proteus, the Sirens and the witch Circe were all probably part of a repetoire of tales delivered by the local poet/entertainer long before someone called Homer grabbed the posthumous glory by having them ascribed to him.

Homecomings are still a pretty popular genre in film, television and print. There must be something in the plot device which touches an unconscious part of us. It's a bit feelgood; it's a bit dreadful. It engages us all. Is Odyseus going to get home? What will happen to his wife and son? What would I do?

So, read it first for the story. And surprise yourself at how well you recognise the motivations and actions of characters placed in these situations over 2700 years ago. We haven't changed much, have we?

Then read it again.

This time, read it for the world of Odysseus. For what it tells you about the way we lived in a pre-literate, feudal society where any kind of progress was hard-won and very easily lost. Read it for the similes and metaphors Homer uses to describe things and events to an audience to make them come alive and be real to them. What do they tell you about the world back then? What do they tell you about the experiences of the audience and how would they feel, contrasting their life with that of this epic tale?

Read it for the insight into man's relationship with the gods. How did the ancient audience perceive them? Were they beings to be feared and propitiated? Wasn't that what kings were, too? Was there something more in the relationship between Odysseus and Athene? Something a little more human? Hmmmm.

Every page has something new to tell us about this now lost world. Look carefully and you can see stuff about the role of women in Homeric society; there's stuff about the etiquette and meaning of gift-giving in there. There's even stuff about how economics worked all those years ago. In fact, if you look closely enough (and stare at a few vase paintings as well) you can make an entire academic career out of this book.

But that would be missing the point.

Read it (at least) twice. It's got to be the best seven quid you'll ever spend.
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An adventure that will keep you enthralled to the very end, 1 Aug 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: The Odyssey (Everyman's Library Classics) (Hardcover)
Greek myths. Epics. Boring? well, actually...no! 'The Odyssey' is a wonderful piece of Greek literature that will keep any reader entertained right to the last page. It follows the Greek hero, Odysseus, through his trails and tribulations as he tries to make the journey back home to Ithaca and back to his wife Penelope. He comes accross many obstacles along the way including the mythical one-eyed Cyclops, the dangerous seducers of song: the sirens, and the evils of the underworld. And Odysseus doesn't just use his brawn to defeat his enemies but often devises clever plans to decieve them. However, it is not only monsters that he has to fight off, but he also has to avoid the advances of beautiful goddesses who want to keep Odysseus for themselves.
But this epic is not only a story of Oddyseus' long absence, but describes how his wife and son survive at home and particularly touching is the recount of Penelope's moral dilemma of whether to wait for her husband to return or to carry on with her life and marry another suitor.
The Odyssey is an epic which has something in it for everyone, with many strong varied characters that can be empathised with, and situations that are still reflected in today's society. It is poetical whilst still being direct; humourous whilst still being touching; and an epic which you will actually enjoy reading until the very last page!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book, 4 Sep 2012
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This review is from: The Odyssey (Everyman's Library Classics) (Hardcover)
Absolutely Great. Bought for my neice, she was over the moon. Certainly great Value for the money.
Nicely presented. Delivery was very quick.
Would recommend.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A must read!, 13 Jan 2012
This review is from: The Odyssey (Everyman's Library Classics) (Hardcover)
The Odyssey is definetly a must read book! If you like your Greek mythology this is the book for you!
I really enjoyed reading it in school and I had to own it. This book also is quite intriguing, you will be captivated by it and the story of Odysseus.
I believe this book is a 5/5.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's a bit Circe-tous..., 21 Nov 2010
By 
Sporus (Yorkshire, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Odyssey (Everyman's Library Classics) (Hardcover)
You cannot, in all seriousness, give a book of such historical importance three stars. But I thought I'd sound a different note for anyone who was thinking of 'trying a classic' - because it seems obviously more attractive to read The Odyssey over The Iliad. The latter is just one big battle, the former promises monsters and fantasy and peregrinatory adventures. But in fact the Iliad is both far more compelling and revealing of the age. The Odyssey might be attributed to the same author as The Iliad but they both filter through an oral tradition - and the tale of Odysseus is patently stained by a later, romanticised and often laboured style. Of course it deserves five stars (just chop off two of the three stars I've given it and let them grow back as four...): but The Iliad is the humdinger* (*NB not a Greek word).
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The Odyssey (Everyman's Library Classics)
The Odyssey (Everyman's Library Classics) by Homer (Hardcover - 8 Oct 1992)
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