Now that the busiest period at work is over, it’s time for me to pick up my posts where I left off. First up is a long overdue review of a book that I originally read for Keishon’s TBR Challenge for March.
Title: The Firebrand
Author: Marion Zimmer Bradley
Genre: Historical Fiction/ Fantasy
Year Published : 2007
Stand alone or series: Stand alone
Why I read it:
I’ve been fascinated by Greek mythology since young, and one of the tales I love most is that of the Iliad. I’ve read numerous different accounts and rewrites of this war epic, and have yet to get tired of it. One of the best I’ve read is Colleen McCullogh’s Song of Troy, told from the perspectives of different key players in the war.
Marion Zimmer Bradley has long been a favourite author of mine, and I’ve been wanting to read this recount of the war from the perspective of the Trojan princess Kassandra.
On the Back cover:
Though born of noble blood, Kassandra is destined for a life greater than that of a Trojan princess. Even before her mother sends her to live among the Amazons, Kassandra is chosen by the Sun God Apollo as his priestess – and has the gift of foresight bestowed upon her.
She has foreseen the destruction of Troy – a great war between the Akhaians and Trojans and the wrath of the gods upon them all. But no one believes Kassandra’s prophecies, or heeds her warnings about the beautiful woman known as Helen …
In my books …
MZB has imbued the main character Kassandra, through whose eyes readers are treated to the unfolding of the war, and a realistic glimpse of the life and times of ancient Greeks (Akhaians), Trojans and their relationship with their deities, with a rather modern view of the world. At times, her views seem a little incongruous with the mentality of the women around her.
In a sense, Kassandra is more Amazonian and liberal than her mother and sisters, and I’m of the opinion that this difference in thought and action is what set her apart as an eccentric and outcast, rather than her gift of prophecy. What was different about this retelling, is the unlikely friendship that sprung up between Helen and Kassandra.
My firm favourite of MZB’s wok remains The Mists of Avalon, which is far more intense and absorbing than this stand-alone. Some parts of the book suffered a little from pacing issues, but on the whole, the story and the rich background of the novel makes it a good read.
None that I can recall
IMB Rating: 4.0, Liked It!