Artemis: Wild Goddess of the Hunt (Olympians Volume 9)

First Second

Mar 07, 2017 Issue # 59 - 15th Anniversary Bookmark and Share


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From Thomas Bulfinch to Edith Hamilton to the d'Aulaires, there have been many successful endeavors over the last century or so to bring ancient Greek mythology out from the stuffy realm of academia and into the layperson's hands. You can now add to that esteemed list of authors George O'Connor, who has created a comic book series devoted to the old myths. Each volume examines a different god from the Greek pantheon along with some of the more popular stories surrounding that figure.

In his latest installment, O'Connor examines the goddess Artemis, whom you may equate with Lil' Kim if you wanted a contemporary frame of reference. She can hold her own with the most notorious bad boys and plays the diva with her own extensive entourage of nymphs, water maidens, and hunting dogs that accompany her wherever she goes. Apparently she's also the original gangsta, at one point mercilessly wiping out 14 children because their mother Niobe disrespected her own mother, Leto. She's fiercely independent and self-determining, and lives up to her vows of not only being goddess of the hunt-a bold encroachment on what was a decidedly manly sport in those times-but also protectress of women and children, as is so cleverly demonstrated within the comic book when she wields her bow for the very first time.

There's a reason these myths continue to endure and reassert themselves into popular culture periodically; they're exciting, oftentimes bizarre, and provide us with succinct allegories for the common challenges most of us will face in life. The ancient Greek and the 21st Century techie may have totally different life experiences, but they both must reckon with a world of chaos, danger, love, hope, and strife to fulfill their own life journey. The myths personify these basic elements of reality and give us clues to understand and negotiate them. In Artemis, O'Connor will show you the triumphs and challenges of independent thought in an antagonistic world, a mindset embodied by Artemis and her uncompromising rejection of conformity. (www.firstsecondbooks.com)

Author rating: 8/10

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