Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Soldier of Arete” as Want to Read:
Soldier of Arete
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Soldier of Arete (Latro #2)

4.14  ·  Rating Details  ·  727 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Mass Market Paperback, 348 pages
Published October 28th 1990 by Tor Books (first published 1989)
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 Soldier of Arete, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Soldier of Arete

The Song of Achilles by Madeline MillerThe King Must Die by Mary RenaultThe Last of the Wine by Mary RenaultThe Bull from the Sea by Mary RenaultBlack Ships by Jo Graham
Classical Fiction
14th out of 53 books — 38 voters
American Gods by Neil GaimanDaughter of the Forest by Juliet MarillierGood Omens by Terry PratchettThe Once and Future King by T.H. WhiteElla Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
Myth and Folktale Retellings
127th out of 421 books — 415 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,131)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jun 12, 2013 Terry rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: People who like puzzles and history buffs of ancient Greece
Latro continues his journey across ancient Greece in search of his memory in Gene Wolfe’s second entry in the “Soldier” series _Soldier of Arete_. As implied in my review of Soldier of the Mist I am finding this series to be the easiest for me to ‘get into’ of all of Gene Wolfe’s work that I’ve read thus far. I think it’s because many of the elements Wolfe employs in nearly all of his fiction really seem to make sense here. Latro is naïve and ‘unreliable’ as a narrator, but he’s suffering from m ...more
Perry Whitford
Dec 03, 2013 Perry Whitford rated it it was amazing
'Soldier of Arete' is the continued quest of the perfect soldier, Latro, to regain his lost memory and distant, hazy home. Furthermore, his condition and aspect have molded him as the ideal avatar to be both a missionary for the Athenians to find the engineer who manufactured the cables used by Xerxes to cross the Hellespont via a bridge of boats, and for a pawn in an unfathomable game of one-upmanship by the Olympian gods of Ancient Greece.
Latro can literally see the gods, they appear to him in
Andrew Herbert
Jan 15, 2013 Andrew Herbert rated it liked it
Ugh. The first book in this series is so interesting, different and excellent. I found the second one harder going. Gene Wolfe enjoys being obtuse, to alluding to different historical events and groups, but what worked for me in the first book didn't work in this one. There are stretches where it's a great read, although a puzzle all the time, and other times I was just confused. Perhaps reading before bed isn't the ideal time for this book? Anyway, I strongly recommend 'Soldier of the Mist', bu ...more
Oct 24, 2013 Csenge rated it it was amazing
I burned through the first book and moved right on to the second. This one is just as good, even though the final chapters got more than a little bit confusing, and I had to read some of them twice to get what was happening. Latro is still awesome, and everyone wants a piece of him. Definitely an enjoyable read, goes right to the favorites.
I read this before; trying to figure out--the hard way, I guess--which of the three in this sequence I have read. It must be the third I haven't read. So far, they're excellent.
Continuation of adventures of Latro, his companions, and cast of secondary characters [some old, some new]. Latro's same overarching quest to find his name, homeland, family [if any], and cure for his partial memory loss, but particular to this book: quest to find a certain military engineering expert. Travelogue including trips to Thrace, land of the Amazons, and back to Greece, especially city of Rope [Sparta] and Dolphins [Delphi?]. I'm enjoying the story but the mistranslations of the geog ...more
Shannon Appelcline
Dec 23, 2012 Shannon Appelcline rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, historical
Like its predecessor, brilliant, though at times I find this one a bit too obscure, particularly the last chapter.
Jun 11, 2014 Dergrossest rated it really liked it
This second installment in the Soldier of the Mist trilogy leaves the casual reader behind as ancient Greek politics and power struggles between the Gods take center stage - if you think that “Herodotus” is the daily special at the Greek diner down the street, this is definitely not the book for you. Making all of this even more challenging is our reliance upon an unreliable narrator who has lost his short-term memory, cannot remember anything from the previous day and must tell the story based ...more
Feb 06, 2013 C rated it really liked it
I really wanted to pick the Latro In the Mist cover over this one - it's so much better and just makes you want to pick up the book and read it.

Book II of the "then-duology, now-trilogy" of Latro.

After struggling and napping and wiki-ing my way through book one, book 2 went a little easier. I'd cut my nap average down to 1x every 3 or 4 chapters vs. nearly 1x per chapter on book one.
And, I can say that it finally really roped (haha, inside joke) me in on the last half... only to leave me hanging
Aug 15, 2009 Eric rated it really liked it
For this sequel to Soldier of the Mist, Wolfe exchanges supernatural menace for political intrigue and psychological drama, and the result is nearly as engaging as the original. The gods, monsters, and ghosts that Latro encounters are still dangerous and unpredictable, but their menace is dampened by two factors. Firstly, most of the gods and people in Latro's narrative are manipulating him, using his damaged memory and supernatural insight for their own ends. They want to control him, not destr ...more
Maria Haskins
Jul 03, 2015 Maria Haskins rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved Soldier of the Mist, the first book in this series, and I really liked this one as well. Wolfe's writing is first-class and his storytelling is original and captivating. The only reason I am rating it lower than the first book, is that the storyline itself was a bit more confusing and hard to follow (though the enigmatic storyline is something I also appreciate), and that Latro's inability to remember is treated more as a storytelling device, rather than part of the story in t ...more
Nov 10, 2013 Christopher rated it really liked it
Every Gene Wolfe book I read I am humbled by. His lyrical and challenging prose demands so much from a reader but if you devote the time and attention to it, it's so very rewarding. This second volume in the "Latro" series is no exception.

Soldier of Arete continues the story of Latro, a mercenary in classical Greece who can't make new memories and must write down his thoughts each day lest he forget them. His injury also allows him to have encounters with the various gods/goddesses which makes f
Mark Bringman
Aug 29, 2015 Mark Bringman rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, fantasy, wolfe
More dense than Soldier of the Mist (this is the sequel) and obtuse (it took a while for me to understand what made Latro depressed after the ceremony of manumission).

This book has a lot of questions and seems to me to be more of a 3.5 than a 4. But I love me an unreliable narrator and I love Wolfe - he engages my brain :-)
Nov 23, 2014 Kyle rated it really liked it
So it helps if you do some background reading beforehand and some careful Googling to understand everything afterwards . . . but still, it's well, well worth it. Give it some attention, and be ok being confused a bit.
Dirk Mccomsey
Jun 26, 2015 Dirk Mccomsey rated it it was amazing
There are some spells where Latro & company spend more time in one place than the previous book, but, all in all a worthy sequel to its predecessor.
Dec 24, 2010 Ilya rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
In a sequel to Soldier of the Mist, the amnesiac protagonist meets with mortals such as Simonides the poet and Cleon the politician, and gods and mythological creatures such as Cybele and the Sphinx. Why is "uhuyu" "my brother" in the language of the "Crimson men" (the Phoenicians)? In Biblical Hebrew, a Canaanite language closely related to Phoenician, "my brother" is "ʔaḥi"; the Bible has a Hebrew character ʔaḥiram, whose name means "my brother is exalted", and a Phoenician King Ḥiram; it woul ...more
Asha Hawkesworth
Apr 30, 2015 Asha Hawkesworth rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy-sf
The sequel to Soldier of the Mist. Definitely worthwhile.
Oct 23, 2007 Lelu rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who don't need a clear story line

The main character can't remember anything but what has happened since he woke up that morning and he lives in some ancient whacky world and there is some underlying plot and he somehow is able to trick himself into completing his part of whatever is going on and it all kind of pulls together in the end somehow. Loved it.
Adam Vine
Nov 07, 2013 Adam Vine rated it really liked it
If you want to read a really bad ass book about Ancient Greece... Latro's story is pure genius.
D Calco
May 07, 2013 D Calco rated it liked it
I like Wolfe's other work better, but this was decent.
Eric Wisdahl
Sep 09, 2008 Eric Wisdahl marked it as to-read
Shelves: fiction, fantasy
A book of Latro.
Bearded Wonder
Bearded Wonder marked it as to-read
Feb 04, 2016
Italo Celis Reategui
Italo Celis Reategui marked it as to-read
Feb 03, 2016
Jonathan Miller
Jonathan Miller marked it as to-read
Feb 03, 2016
Christopher marked it as to-read
Feb 03, 2016
Scare Bear
Scare Bear marked it as to-read
Feb 02, 2016
Nicole rated it really liked it
Jan 31, 2016
Thomas P
Thomas P rated it it was ok
Jan 29, 2016
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 37 38 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Charwoman's Shadow
  • Physiognomy
  • All The Bells on Earth
  • Dry Water
  • The Gift
  • Made of Stone
  • The Fire in His Hands (Dread Empire, #4)
  • Merlin's Ring
  • Shadow of Ashland (Ashland #1)
  • Pilgermann
  • Rachel Rising, Volume 4: Winter Graves
  • Madouc (Lyonesse, #3)
  • The Circus of the Earth and the Air
  • Lord of the Two Lands (Alexander the Great, #0)
  • Return to Nevèrÿon (Return to Nevèrÿon, #4)
  • Glimpses
  • Thraxas (Thraxas, #1-2)
  • The Stress of Her Regard
Gene Wolfe is an American science fiction and fantasy writer. He is noted for his dense, allusive prose as well as the strong influence of his Catholic faith, to which he converted after marrying a Catholic. He is a prolific short story writer and a novelist, and has won many awards in the field.

The Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award is given by SFWA for ‘lifetime achievement in science fict
More about Gene Wolfe...

Other Books in the Series

Latro (3 books)
  • Soldier of the Mist
  • Soldier of Sidon

Share This Book