Book Review Sunday! Helen of Troy!


I decided to do one of my all-time favorite books for the review this Sunday – Helen of Troy by Margaret George. And I must say, this novel is absolutely brilliant.
Unlike many Helen of Troy books, George starts from the very beginning and goes all the way to the very end. And while this may seem like a long, tedious process for the reader, George’s writing is so flipping fantastic that I STILL want more.
George is also the first author that makes the whole “elopment” storyline readable. I have always struggled with that storyline as a reader and avid Greek mythology fan, and the way George brings it to life makes Helen’s life almost tangible to the point that you want to elope with her. Sorry, that was a mouthful. Am I the only one that’s struggled with the adultery aspect of this myth? Though it seems like a common theme among Greek myths it was still hard to bear because it is the source of blame for the iconic war. Needless to say, George turns this thread in the storyline bearable and even enjoyable at turns.
That brings me to the main heroine, Helen. She is a pampered princess, the most beautiful woman in the world, with men coming in droves to kiss her feet, and yet you still feel pity for her. She is the daughter of a god and a queen, and predictably her life will be tragic yet beautiful. The story plays in almost three parts, the first being her childhood up until her marriage to Menelaus, the second her elopment with Paris and consequential war, and the third plays a short but sweet part of her picking up the pieces. It’s an ode to one of the most iconic, yet misunderstood, heroines of all time.
Though this book is long, over 600 pages (which may seem like a walk in the park to George R.R. Martin fans like myself), each page is so beautifully written and gripping that you find yourself wishing for more as you turn the final pages.
Overall, this book is great for lovers of Greek myths and epic love stories. George does a great job weaving the portrait of Helen with equal parts realism and magic, doing this epic story complete justice.


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