by Lise Lunge-Larsen, Gareth Hinds
Houghton Mifflin Harcdourt, $18.99, 90 pages
Many of the words used today have ancient roots in Greco-Roman mythology. Janitor, museum, furious, echo, genius, and panic are just a few examples of the linguistic legacy left to the English language by much older cultures. Gifts from the Gods explores the origins of these words by looking back to the adventures of the heroes and gods who inspired them, bringing to light the history hiding in everyday speech.
Although the myths contained in this book have been severely abridged, Gifts from the Gods is still a wonderful way to introduce young readers to the myths of ancient Greece and Rome. The attention grabbing, comic book-esque illustrations will appeal to boys and girls alike and the short accessible chapters are sure to encourage further reading on the subject. The book is made slightly less appealing by its frequent use of unrelated quotes and clunky typography, but is on the whole a very beautiful and engaging read.
Reviewed by Elizabeth Goss