The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood

Rating: 3.5

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The Penelopiad: The Myth of Penelope and Odysseus

Author: Margaret Atwood

Reader: Laural Merlington

Short Review: Margaret Atwood’s retelling of a portion of The Odyssey in Penelope’s voice, her contribution to the Canongate Myth Series, read by Laurel Merlington.

Long Review: I am a mythology nut. A buff. A, well, obsessive kook. I know this. I’m fine with this. And when I learned that I had missed the bus–that this series of books was underway and that it kicked off without me–I felt like I had caught someone kicking my dog.

Atwood, of course, retells Penelope’s story with a wonderful feminist twist. Atwood’s Penelope stands up for the maids, and criticizes her wayward husband and disingenuous suitors. She argues that her supposed beauty has long since faded, and that all of the men in the story are arguing over her for entirely unromantic reasons.

Laurel Merlington’s narration is engaging, sharp, and humorous. Her method of voicing the chorus is a bit shrill at times, but that seems fitting considering the messages they carry.

This was a good listen–I burned through it in an afternoon of puttering around my studio, and immediately missed my Ancient Greek companions. I look forward to listening to more audio books from the Canongate Myth Series.



One Comment

  1. penelopiad wrote:

    […] with music. Atwood has focused on the …http://www.nationalpost.com/arts/story.html?id=369096The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood The Penelopiad: The Myth of Penelope and Odysseus Author: Margaret Atwood Reader: Laural Merlington […]

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