The Walled Orchard (The Walled Orchard #1-2)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Walled Orchard (The Walled Orchard #1-2)

4.28 of 5 stars 4.28  ·  rating details  ·  160 ratings  ·  11 reviews
'Witty, ironic ... and achieves a deeply felt authenticity' NEW YORK TIMES
Paperback, 608 pages
Published April 5th 2001 by Abacus (first published 1990)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Walled Orchard, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Walled Orchard

The Dante Club by Matthew PearlThe Historian by Elizabeth KostovaPossession by A.S. ByattThe Thirteenth Tale by Diane SetterfieldArthur & George by Julian Barnes
Authors in Historical Fiction
45th out of 148 books — 64 voters
A Dirty Job by Christopher MooreGood Omens by Terry PratchettFear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. ThompsonChoke by Chuck PalahniukLamb by Christopher Moore
Best Dark Humor
403rd out of 413 books — 889 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 299)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Susan Price
I love Tom Holt's fantasies, but this historical novel is one of the best I've ever read. Its analysis of the 'democracy' of ancient Athens is a comment on our own times, and it's scathingly funny. Also eerie. Just wonderful.
Matthew Cooper
One of my favourite books. A perfect mix of comedy and pathos with an anti-hero who I can relate to. Eupolis is a comedy playwright who seems to be confounded at every turn by vicissitudes of fate which lead him into a number of tragic situations. Despite his bad luck he retains his positive attitude. Through this character we learn so much about the human desire for success, the futility of war, the idiocy of politics and more. It is also a really easy read, and that is a compliment. Everything...more
This is the two-book fictionalised autobiography of Eupolis, who was a real person, one of the Comic poets of ancient Athens, a contemporary (and rival) of the better known Aristophanes. Very little is known about Eupolis, so Tom Holt pretty much has carte blanche to invent the whole thing. The result is 600 pages of brilliant entertainment.

The first book, 'Goatsong', deals with Eupolis's life until he is in his thirties, and is mostly concerned with his fraught relationship with his wife and h...more
I may be biased because I love Greek History, but this is definitely one of the most interesting Tom Holt books I've ever read. The main characters are incredibly real, gritty, and immensely entertaining. And it has one of the best final lines I've ever read. I really enjoyed it - and there's a high probability of re-reading in the future which shows a deep favourite. I had no idea Tom Holt wrote books like this, and I am deeply impressed also by the level of research, and ironic analysis of sai...more
I don't know much about the Ancient Greeks and have never had any particular interest in learning more about them, but I loved this book. It was so compellingly written that I often found it easy to forget that I was reading fiction and felt as though I was reading an actual memoir. The character Eupolis and his supporting cast felt well-rounded and real. I especially loved Phaedra, she was funny and sweet and sad and exasperating all at the same time.
The book starts out being just a humorous s...more
Finding out absolutely by chance about the historical fiction of the comic fantasist Thomas Holt - the author extra in Blonde Bombshell is very intriguing and made me explore his website - I just got all 5 and will read them in-between sff

Walled Orchard (originally in two volumes, but I read the omnibus) is another superb one after Meadowland featuring the same trademark matter of fact style and dark irony; Athens in its Golden Age and the disaster of the Sicilian Expedition

Historical sf at its...more
Chris Northern
Historical fiction based in ancient Athens. A bit of a departure from Tom Holt's excellent novels of mythical humour.

Not that this book is without some smiles but the humour tends more toward dark irony. Well worth the read.
I usually never write reviews...but this book made me do it...wonderful mix of historical character and comedy..really enjoyed..should give a try atleast once
interesting style, describing history on a humorous take of a contemporary participant.
War is hell. Even legendary war.

This is a sequel to Goatsong.
very funny
Mo marked it as to-read
Sep 16, 2014
Saren marked it as to-read
Sep 10, 2014
Boshka added it
Sep 11, 2014
xmido marked it as to-read
Sep 04, 2014
M.R. marked it as to-read
Sep 03, 2014
Peter Anderson
Peter Anderson marked it as to-read
Sep 02, 2014
Richard marked it as to-read
Sep 01, 2014
Arianne marked it as to-read
Aug 25, 2014
Miranda marked it as to-read
Aug 19, 2014
Melissane marked it as to-read
Aug 06, 2014
Rod marked it as to-read
Aug 02, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: Request to separate two books 4 18 Sep 18, 2014 02:36PM  
Tom Holt (Thomas Charles Louis Holt; born September 13, 1961) is a British novelist.
He was born in London, the son of novelist Hazel Holt, and was educated at Westminster School, Wadham College, Oxford, and The College of Law, London.
Holt's works include mythopoeic novels which parody or take as their theme various aspects of mythology, history or literature and develop them in new and often humor...more
More about Tom Holt...
The Portable Door Expecting Someone Taller You Don't Have to Be Evil to Work Here, But it Helps In Your Dreams Earth, Air, Fire and Custard

Share This Book