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The Heroes, or Greek Fairy Tales for My Children

Charles Kingsley

Book Overview: 

The Heroes, or Greek Fairy Tales for my Children by Charles Kingsley is a collection of three Greek mythology stories: Perseus, The Argonauts, and Theseus. The author had a great fondness for Greek fairy tales and believed the adventures of the characters would inspire children to achieve higher goals with integrity.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .But my nieces are immortal, and they shall fetch it for you, if you will promise me one thing and keep your faith.’

Then Perseus promised; and the giant said, ‘When you come back with the head of Medusa, you shall show me the beautiful horror, that I may lose my feeling and my breathing, and become a stone for ever; for it is weary labour for me to hold the heavens and the earth apart.’

Then Perseus promised, and the eldest of the Nymphs went down, and into a dark cavern among the cliffs, out of which came smoke and thunder, for it was one of the mouths of Hell.

And Perseus and the Nymphs sat down seven days, and waited trembling, till the Nymph came up again; and her face was pale, and her eyes dazzled with the light, for she had been long in the dreary darkness; but in her hand was the magic hat.

Then all the Nymphs kissed Perseus, and wept over him a long while; but he was only impatient to be gone.  And at last they put the hat upo. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I read this book when I was in the fourth grade , and fell in love with it . I read it over and over until I graduated high school . It's still one of my most prized possessions , even though the pages are falling out .

A somewhat dry retelling of mythos. A veritable antique, I was intrigued by that alone. Would probably have read further than I did if I had had more time with it.

AO year 3 read. I know a lot of people struggle with this one and some are even subbing in a different book but I just love it. I feel it needs to be read aloud and it reads almost like poetry sometimes. The words, the flow, the cadence... it’s lovely.

Charming primer on Greek mythology

I was drawn to this book in order to refresh my memory of some of the Greek myths. While written for children, the stories are not childish but charming. These are carefully wrought abridged versions of well-loved stories and they will be readily enjoyed by peopl...more

I enjoyed reading some of the "actual" stories of Greek mythology. The connection of Theseus to various other characters, including Procrustes and the minotaur, made his section move more quickly than the others. Jason and the Argonauts, I felt, took more time than it needed to; I was also concer...more

"I am Pallas Athena; and I know the thoughts of all men's hearts, and discern their manhood or their baseness. And from the souls of clay I turn away, and they are blessed, but not by me. They fatten at ease, like sheep in the pasture, and eat what they did not sow, like oxen in the stall. They g...more

Me encontré con este libro inesperadamente en una librería de segunda mano, y menuda sorpresa! En el libro se relatan 3 cuentos: Perseo, Los Argonautas y Teseo, y cada uno de ellos me ha hecho enamorarme un poco más de la mitología griega, así que si os gusta ésta, no dudéis en leer este libro! P...more

A super fairy tale

The moral of all the stories remain same, if you are noble and righteous then victory is on your side. You will have adventures in your life. But never let go of your values. Truly a good read

This was a very detailed and in depth look at a trio of Greek Heroes. Occasionally Kingsley nicely ties in a Christian perspective although it is random and unexpected and therefore loses some of it's charm. Additionally, there he sometimes seems to go off on tangents, providing us with too much...more

Pretty good. Some stories hard to get onto because of all the Greek names. My son really loved Perseus. Great precursor to Mythology by Edith Hamilton.

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