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The Land of the Dead (Tales from the Odyssey #2)

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating Details ·  368 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
Odysseus and his men have defeated the one-eyed giant, but its curse follows them at every turn. Cast out to the open seas by the wind god, Odysseus and his fleet continue the difficult journey home. But they cannot return to Ithaca yet. First they must take on giant cannibals and outwit a beautiful witch, who reveals Odysseus' next challenge - a journey to the mysterious ...more
Paperback, 112 pages
Published September 1st 2003 by Hyperion (first published 2002)
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The Odyssey by HomerThe Iliad by HomerMythology by Edith HamiltonThe Complete World of Greek Mythology by Richard BuxtonHomeric Hymns by Homer
Homer: The Blind Bard of Chios
18th out of 95 books — 15 voters
Dinosaurs Before Dark by Mary Pope OsborneThe Knight at Dawn by Mary Pope OsborneMummies in the Morning by Mary Pope OsbornePirates Past Noon by Mary Pope OsborneNight of the Ninjas by Mary Pope Osborne
Best of Mary Pope Osborne
100th out of 100 books — 1 voter

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 677)
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Aug 26, 2014 Dolly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is the second book in the six-book series, Tales from the Odyssey by Mary Pope Osborne and Troy Howell. This story starts off bloody and then proceeds to get worse. Poor Odysseus. I was a bit afraid that our girls would have nightmares, but they took the story in stride. The second half of the story was a wee bit less gory, but overall, this was an exciting and intense tale. We are looking forward to the next book.
In this second installment of the Odyssey, Odysseus has just been blown far away from home, where he'd nearly arrived for a minute there. What a shame he angered that Cyclops and got on the bad side of the Gods! In this book, we meet Circe, that crazy enchantress who turns soldiers into pigs, we travel to the land of the dead to get some not-really-helpful advice and we also meet more than one group of cannibals. Very sad - but incredibly entertaining to my 7 year old son. He begs to be read thi ...more
Julie Suzanne
Oct 03, 2009 Julie Suzanne rated it liked it
These take about 20 minutes for me to read, and it takes my 4th grader about an hour. It keeps him reading, and it's not too much of a time investment for me to be able to discuss the book with him after. A HIGHLY recommended series for kids in grades 2-4. Osborne breaks down about two Odyssey adventures into each book in the series and provides a glossary of Greek gods and some background on Homer & the Odyssey. It's really a perfect level for independent reading for my 9-year-old.

Dec 11, 2012 Asriani rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, children
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 16, 2015 Stan rated it really liked it
Shelves: classics, mythology
Odysseus's saga continues. In this book he must save his men from Circe who has turned half of them into swine. After he has conquered Circe he must go to the land of the dead, a journey no mortal has made, to learn from Tiresias how to return to Ithaca, his home. While there he also encounters Achilles whom he praises as a prince among the dead. Achilles responds he would rather be a servant to a poor man among the living than king of kinds among the dead.
Jun 03, 2015 Veronica rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-books
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 10, 2014 Shelli rated it it was amazing
This is part two of Mary Pope Osborne's translation of Homer’s The Odyssey to a level that elementary age students can read and enjoy. The Odysseus's cursed journey to his homeland of Ithaca continues and the action grows more intense; making this an exciting read that kids will love! A perfect read aloud for intermediate teachers wanting additional resources that help to expose their students to Greek Mythology.
Apr 21, 2014 Donna rated it it was amazing
Shelves: school-library
Really well done retelling of The Odyssey. A quick read (read in the car while my daughter was running into the store for /just 5 minutes/. The story is simplified, but not dumbed down. I'm going to give my 3rd grade grandson the series to start.
Jun 10, 2015 Nancy rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens, fiction
I read the One-Eyed Giant aloud to my third graders, so I thought I should read the next two in the Tales from the Odyssey collection and see what they are all about.
Jan 26, 2014 Kathie rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids-books
The Odyssey in 25 words or less. Well, maybe Mary Pope Osborne used a few more than 25 words, but she sure used them effectively. This story zips along with a cliff-hanger at the end of every chapter. If reluctant readers don't pick this one up they're really missing out!
Luke Ewell
Jul 08, 2015 Luke Ewell rated it really liked it
Shelves: 3rd-grade
Odesseus is desperate to get home but after he is attacked by giants that wreck all his ships but one, he doesn't think he can make it home. When they find a nice land, they find out it is ruled by the goddess Cire. She puts a spell but Odesseus is given magical plant by Hermes that makes it so the spell won't work so she takes back the spell. Hermes tells Odesseus that he has to go to the land of the dead, no mortal has come back from the land of the dead. There he finds a blind prophet named w ...more
Sep 16, 2014 Kate rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great to read aloud; one of those series a grown-up can enjoy, too!!
Jul 29, 2014 Nathaniel rated it really liked it
i liked it
May 03, 2007 Beth rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrensbooks
My students love these books. They are around a late 3rd grade level. I'll never forget a 5th grade boy who came in the my classroom at lunch and said, "I know I'm not supposed to be here right now, but I had to tell you what happened. He saw the ghost of his mother!" He then went on to read the part that shocked him to me. Amazing, considering this boy was reading around an early 2nd grade level just a few months earlier.
Jan 07, 2014 Jennifer rated it liked it
The Land of the Dead, as a place, really didn't figure into the book until the very end. Still, this series is a good retelling of the Odyssey for elementary school kids.
Louis Fairbanks
Dec 15, 2009 Louis Fairbanks rated it it was amazing
I liked how the giants hurled the boulders from the top of the mountain to the ships. I also liked the part about Circe - who is an enchantress. Another good part was when they journeyed to the land of the dead. It is a very adventurous book.
Jan 08, 2013 Cheryl rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 18, 2008 Jennifer rated it it was ok
I liked it a lot but it was waaaayyyy too scary for the kids with all the ghosts and wailing spirits. I had to skip over some paragraphs to edit to down for them.
Mar 24, 2011 Connery rated it it was amazing
This is another one of Marry Pope Osborns great books in the "Tales From The Odeseey" series.
May 16, 2011 Ginny rated it it was ok
This is a much simplified story from the Odyssey. The writing style was lacking.
Jan 12, 2009 Hhastings rated it it was amazing
Easy read about the Greek gods. It's a 4th grade level that all kids would enjoy.
Feb 21, 2012 Theresa rated it liked it
a great collection of stories written for the elementary level reader
Mar 18, 2012 Terry rated it really liked it
wonderful and Mary and I will be sailing through the same area in two weeks.
04/11: So much fun! We have this in hard-copy and on CD.
Serena Brown
Apr 28, 2012 Serena Brown rated it it was amazing
I loved it!.It was as epic as hunger games the movie
Carla Ehrenreich
By a favorite author Mary makes the Odyssey all make sense.
Jayshaun Shaw
Mar 15, 2011 Jayshaun Shaw is currently reading it
its a good book so far
Jul 23, 2013 Julie rated it it was amazing
great children's book.
Dina Venezky
Second or third grade level
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Mary Pope Osborne has channeled a lifelong love of exploration and travel into one of the most popular children’s book series of the past two decades. With her fantastic Magic Tree House series, Mary Pope Osborne keeps the good times rolling for kids all over the world.
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Other Books in the Series

Tales from the Odyssey (6 books)
  • The One-Eyed Giant (Tales from the Odyssey, #1)
  • Sirens and Sea Monsters (Tales from the Odyssey #3)
  • The Gray-Eyed Goddess (Tales from the Odyssey, #4)
  • Return to Ithaca (Tales from the Odyssey, #5)
  • The Final Battle (Tales from the Odyssey, #6)

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