I love Greek Mythology, but I did not really love Mythologica by Stephen P. Kerhshaw. Illustrated by Victoria Topping, this book exists as an introductory encyclopedia to Greek Mythology and the important figures throughout its stories. From mighty Zeus to the not as mighty as he thinks King Midus, this book features a broad spectrum of the characters of ancient Greek mythology. The thing that really stuck with me through this one, though, is that I’m not really sure who it’s intended for.
Knowing Your Audience
I don’t feel like Mythologica really knows its audience. On the one hand, it’s suggested that the book is marketed for middlegrade readers. That said, I don’t really imagine this age group really finding any reason to want to read this story. The text is too small and crowded to hold a child’s interest and, on top of all that, the artwork is far too outlandish.
So, teenagers then? This is perhaps the only age group that I could really see. The material is far too introductory for this to be a worthwhile read for most adults, especially adults who already know about Greek mythology. At best, I could see this as a great book for an Aunt to gift to a niece or nephew who is interested in these kinds of stories–one who is closer to the ages of 12-15. Still, that artwork, though.
And, at the end of the day, I just don’t see this as a book meant for adult readers. There are far better and more informative texts out there to satisfy that curiosity.
I was gonna have to comment on this sooner or later, but what is with the artwork? I won’t say that it’s bad, because it’s not. But it is so out there that it definitely isn’t to my tastes. It’s also the last thing that I would ever expect to depict the characters of Greek mythology. The style of it all just doesn’t match. This is not an art style befitting of these stories. It doesn’t fit and I don’t care for it.
And, at the end of the day, it’s just very out there. I don’t feel like I’m reading a book about Greek mythology when I pick up this book and look at the illustrations. And it took me out a bit.
In the end, I think the best thing I have to say about this book is that it’s not bad…but it could have been much better.
I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.