- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: BBC Books; Mass Market Ed edition (2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0563522658
- ISBN-13: 978-0563522652
- Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 2 x 19.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 25 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 166,100 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
In Search of the Trojan War Paperback – 7 Apr 2005
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For thousands of years, we have been enthralled by tales of Troy and its heroes. Achilles and Hector, Paris and the famed beauty Helen remain some of the most enduring figures in art and literature. But, did these titanic characters really walk the earth? Was there ever an actual siege of Troy? In this extensively revised edition, historian Michael Wood takes account of the latest dramatic developments in the search for Troy. His wide-ranging study of the complex archaeological, literary and historical records has been brought up-to-date. Detailing the rediscovery in Moscow of the so-called jewels of Helen and the re-excavation of the site of Troy begun in 1988, which continues to yield new evidence about the historical city, "In Search of the Trojan War" takes a fresh look at some of the most excited discoveries in archaeology. "A dazzling and exhaustive analysis." - "Washington Post". "This beautifully illustrated book...vividly evokes themes that are central to our civilization's quest for its past." - "The New York Times Book Review".
About the Author
Michael Wood is a highly acclaimed, best-selling author and TV presenter, as well as a regular contributor to BBC History magazine. The BBC have published Michael's previous TV tie-in titles: In Search of the Dark Ages, Legacy, Domesday, In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great, Conquistadors and In Search of Shakespeare. Michael Wood was born in Manchester and was educated at Manchester Grammar School and Oriel College, Oxford, where he went on to do post-graduate research in Anglo-Saxon history. He has worked as a journalist, broadcaster and film-maker with over fifty documentary films to his name, the most recent of which is the acclaimed BBC television series Conquistadors and In Search of Shakespeare. Other recent films by Michael include Legacy and Saddam's Killing Fields, an account of the destruction of the Marsh Arabs of southern Iraq.
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Michael Wood brilliantly takes us through the discovery of Troy and it's many layers, the colorful characters involved in the discovery, as well as the discovery of places relevant to the legend and history of the Trojan War(s). He makes a great case for the kernels of truth in Homer's epic that have tantalizing evidence to back them up. He is also very good at providing tantalizing evidence for what probably didn't happen. The speculative tangents are fun to read as well. In that sense, the book is faultless for me.
What took it down a notch for me was the final chapter, which is an update of the first edition of this book. It just felt as though there was little in the way of substance in terms of new evidence with a final, long speculative tangent tacked onto it like the bows they would tape to newborn girls' heads in hospitals when they had no hair. It felt as though it didn't quite belong, and that the speculations were filler. There is nothing wrong with the speculation in and of itself, and he clearly states that it is just that. It just felt as though he could have updated us with that in other relevant parts of the book and left the last chapter to his final, organized speculations.
I would still read it again and probably more than once.
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