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Date: Fri, 24 Jan 2003 10:10:08 +0000 (GMT)
From: Josh Geller 
Subject: Re: (urth) Latro series, supplemental Graves

Plutarch's Life

On Tue, 21 Jan 2003, Tami Whitehead wrote:

> I am glad that the discussion has turned to Latro,
> since that was how I first found and loved Wolfe. I am
> not qualified to comment on or discuss Long Sun or New
> Suns or the like, but on Latro and Graves, I feel more
> competent to put in my two cents...sorta.
> I agree with those who advocate, if not a working
> knowledge of Greek history and mythology, at least
> having a couple of reference books handy during the
> reading. Or both . Those who adore Wolfe-ish
> twists and devious sub-plots, etc, it really does shed
> another dimension on an already rather fun twist on
> the sword and sorcery genre.
> As Russel points out, Herodotus and Xenophon are the
> most relevant, and are in themselves enjoyable reads.
> If you crave brave deeds and bloody battles and omens
> and such, you can't go much wrong there, and Latro
> fans will enjoy a bit of the "straight stuff" I think.
> For Graves, I recommend Greek Myths 1&2, available in
> paperback from Penguin. I think folks should have it
> on their shelves just because it's a handy and
> insightful little work, but certainly makes keeping up
> with all the characters a bit easier...conveniant
> indices and chapter headings make look-up quick and
> easy, and the bibliography for each section is pretty
> impressive, and draws from a number of sources, so you
> get a pretty balanced layout of the myth and
> characters, as well as a bit of historical perspective
> in the commentary which follows each section.
> In another Doors post, someone asked about lunar
> calenders and 13 months etc, and someone responded
> with a bit of information of interalary or leap days,
> months etc. Graves also treated this subject
> specifically, and the question of Man's Implied
> Relationship with Goddess in his book the White
> Goddess, though I hesitate to recommend it--it's one
> of those books you really gotta want to read straight
> through to do so, and even then it's not in most folks
> sphere of interest, being about 500 pages of rather
> arcane decryption of Welsh Verse and mythic riddles
> and ancient calender systems relating to the epigraphy
> of celtic writing systems...but if that's your bag,
> you'll love it. The reason I even mention it, since
> Wolfe seems to be familiar with the one set of Graves'
> books (and that is apparant as you read one with the
> other) it may be that in Green's Goddess, there are
> similar elements. I throw that out for the Doors fans
> just as an idea, and I'll leave it at that.
> ((Honestly, I read Doors, and just sat and scratched
> my head for a day or so. It reminded me a bit of
> Lilith, by ol' what's his name, friend and
> contemporary of C S Lewis etc...rats, what's his name,
> but you know the one, Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
> for adults, with a tad un-orthodox Christian
> symbolism...))
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