When she was a young girl, Barbara McBride-Smith was introduced to the ancient Greek myths but she didn't quite hear right. When her teacher told her they lived in the cradle of western civilization, young Barbara thought she said Western civilization - as in central Texas, around about Waco, where they seemed to fit right in. Ol' Man Zeus, after all, was a gun-totin' Big Daddy, sort of the J.R. Ewing of Mount Olympus. You know Aphrodite, the school basketball queen or Pandora the debutante, the best guitar picker around was Orpheus - Tom T. and wasn't Medusa the one who started the fashion trend known as Big Hair? With her incurable Texas drawl, feminist sympathies, and cheerleader's do-right attitude, master storyteller Barbara McBride-Smith spins the Greek myths as you've never heard them before.
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Grade 9 Up-McBride-Smith has retold 16 familiar Greek tales and given them a new twist-the characters are Texans. Welcome to a world in which Theseus is a boy who has "a few cogs without a matching ratchet," Demeter is a bitter woman with vengeance on her mind, Medea is a lusty woman who kills for love, Orpheus is a Garth Brooks kinda guy, Achilles and Odysseus are draft dodgers, and Bacchus is a drunken womanizer. The stories, while staying true to the facts of the originals, take on a whole new life. There is plenty of funny colloquial language and there are details to tickle the fancy of many young adults-naked beauty contests, wicked fights, name calling. On the negative side, the humor is full of stereotypical jabs (women are made to change toilet-paper rolls and arrange sock drawers), and most kids aren't going to get it, other than seeing it as a book poking fun at jocks, airhead girls, etc. It will take a sophisticated and dedicated mythology student to appreciate the humor here.
Angela J. Reynolds, West Slope Community Library, Portland, OR
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description August House Publishers, Inc, Little Rock AR, 1998. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. First Printing. 8vo 8" - 9" tall; 121 pages. Bookseller Inventory # 46746
Book Description August House, 2005. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0874835240
Book Description August House, 2005. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110874835240
Book Description August House. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0874835240 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.0467002