SERIES MADE SIMPLE

Athena

. 9781680721362. ea vol: 32p. (Gods of Legend). bibliog. chart. chron. diag. further reading. glossary. illus. index. maps. photos. websites. Black Rabbit. Aug. 2017. lib. ed. $31.35.
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Gr 2–4—Designed for emerging or reluctant readers, this series is an introduction to Greek and Norse mythology's characters. The layout includes a variety of eye-catching digital illustrations, infographics, and maps in an easy-to-follow format. The author has culled basic facts about each character's major life events, leaving room for critical thinking (e.g., how could Athena have stepped out of Zeus's head fully formed and wearing armor?). Additionally, readers will appreciate that gods Odin and Loki are given equal time with Thor. Each volume ends rather abruptly with a variation of the succinct but unsatisfying sentence "The stories are old but still important today." However, the back matter does provide options for further inquiry.
VERDICT A well-packaged series that only scratches the surface. Consider for collections in need of mythology-lite.
Figures from Greek and Norse mythology are introduced in short illustrated chapters. Choppy texts cover the basics, but the lack of detail is occasionally odd (e.g, "Athena helped the Greeks win a war" could easily have specified "...the Trojan War"). The illustrations are a disjointed mix including stills from recent films, comic book style renderings, and classical paintings. Reading list, websites. Glos., ind.

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