13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
It's pure gold,
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This review is from: Troy: Lord of the Silver Bow (Mass Market Paperback)
This is an excellent book. The reason it has got such mixed reviews is that it is not a fantasy story for which David Gemmell is known for, although it is based on a classical Greek mythological story. This is really historical fiction, and as such, it is more character and plot driven than the hack and slash action usually found in Gemmell's books. This has clearly not gone down well with many of his fans, who prefer his usual fantasy stories. I believe Gemmell's publishers and should have made this clear, especially for the few hard of thinking, short attention span types, whom this book is totally unsuitable for. It certainly shouldn't be in the fantasy section.
If you are familiar with Homer's epic poems the Illiad and the Odyssey then you will have a good understanding of what this trilogy is about, but it is not essential to read those classical Greek books in order to enjoy these stories. Gemmell has done a brilliant job of recreating the Bronze Age world of the Mediterranean. This book has been excellently researched; everything is spot on for that era. I like the fact that the main protagonists from the Illiad; Agamemnon, Priam, Hektor etc. are only supporting characters in this story. This makes the story much more interesting than a simple retelling of the classic tale. Another difference to the Homer story is that this story is based in the real world of that time with an absence of the mythology and the Greek gods that played such an important role in the original tale; this is surprising considering Gemmell's fantasy storytelling talents. Overall, this is a marvellous, well polished, gripping story on a par with the books of Steven Pressfield.