The Odyssey, Homer, translated by Emily Wilson, W W Norton & Company, 2018, 577 pp
Big reading goal accomplished! I read The Iliad ten years ago as translated by W H D Rouse. I always intended to read The Odyssey but had been so bored with The Iliad, I could not bring myself to start. I even researched for a better translation and bought a Penguin Classic edition of one supposed to be written in prose instead of verse but never read a page. This this year Emily Wilson published a new translation, lauded as the most accessible one ever.
I forked over $40 for the hardcover and began. The Introduction and Translator's Note plus four excellent maps of the world of The Odyssey went for 100 pages but were as good as a class with Ms Wilson, who is a professor of classical studies at the University of Pennsylvania. She got me excited to read about Odysseus, that man of many minds and many skills, that trickster with Athena as his guardian goddess.
I did not read it all in one go, but I read steadily every week and finished in three months. Along with the Introduction and Translator's Note in the front of the book, Wilson also provides Notes in the back with a summary of each chapter and additional clarifications as well as an extensive glossary of characters and locations. The book is a complete package and I never lost track of the story.
If you have wanted to read The Odyssey or if you had a less than wonderful time reading it in the past, I recommend this translation. It is as easy to read as a novel and a great adventure story.
Yesterday I started reading Circe by Madeline Miller. I felt right at home in Ancient Greece where gods and mortals played out their destinies.
(The Emily Wilson translation of The Odyssey is available in hardcover by order from Once Upon A Time Bookstore.)