Greek Beasts and Heroes: The Harp of Death
The eighth volume of this series contains tales of devotion and tragedy, trickery and punishment in seven more Greek myths.
The first two tell how Heracles dies after his wife is tricked by a centaur. In heaven, he then saves the gods from an attack by the monstrous snake giants. Next are two stories about Atalanta, who was abandoned as a baby because she was a girl. Raised by bears, she becomes faster than any man. Reluctant to lose her freedom, she doesn’t want to marry, but is eventually tricked by Melanion. Alcestis loves her husband so much she is prepared to die for him. Orpheus is so heartbroken when his bride dies he ventures into the underworld find her. Ixion and Thamyris both discover they cannot out-wit the gods.
Written for 5-8 year olds, these tales are simply narrated and beautifully illustrated. This volume would probably appeal more to the upper end of the age range, because it is more about emotion than action, and includes several lesser known myths. A very useful feature at the end guides readers to related tales in other volumes.