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Eric Shanower
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Age of Bronze: A Thousand Ships (Age of Bronze #1)

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3.92  ·  Rating Details  ·  923 Ratings  ·  117 Reviews
Daring heroes, breathtaking women, betrayals, love and death--the most spectacular war story ever told: The Trojan War. When a lustful Trojan prince abducts the beautiful Queen Helen of Sparta, Helen`s husband vows to recover her no matter the cost. So begins the Trojan War. From far and wide the ancient kings of Greece bring their ships to join the massive force to pledge ...more
Published by Turtleback Books (first published 2001)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,588)
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Marquise
Original comment on 1st read, 2014

Another retelling of The Iliad that left me indifferent and somewhat disappointed at how modern the characters feel. Shanower would've used doing a deeper research on the mentality of the epoch.

Update 08/04/2016

Third attempt at this graphic novel retelling of Homer's great epic, and second successful read through to the end. Unfortunately, I ended disliking it worse than the first time. I really can't with Shanower, and after this I'm done with his work. I love
...more
Terence
I waffle on whether to switch my shelving from "mythologies" to "historical fiction" since Shanower - like Wolfgang Petersen in the execrable "Troy" - removes the divine elements from the tale entirely, which has the unfortunate effect of reducing the entire story to seven seasons (this is volume one of seven) of "The West Wing," a political soap opera. I'm put in mind of Star Wars, which went from the epic opening in episode IV - "It is a period of civil war. Rebel spaceships, striking from a h ...more
Andrew
I read the Iliad on a lark without knowing much about the text itself and was surprised when the I discovered that the book starts with the war of Troy already begun.

This book sets out to tell the story of how the war got started. It begins with Paris's story and then the capture of Helen, and concluded with the Greeks assembling an army to attack Troy.

There were a few extremely interesting and exciting chapters, but also a few boring ones. I guess its this inconsistency that I disliked.

The art
...more
Jeanne
I don't think this series is for me. I expected something as epic as the Iliad and I found myself presented with a graphic novel that I felt was the opposite of what I expected.

Some perhaps might enjoy a more 'accurate' re-telling of the Trojan war, one filled with politics and a character driven plot in place of any divine intervention that was present in the Iliad. But I couldn't bring myself to like it, despite the fact that those sorts of things are what I normally enjoy.

It certainly didn't
...more
Myke Cole
Jul 23, 2015 Myke Cole rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great comic. Shanower does an excellent job of reimagining the Iliad and the surrounding mythology (Jason and The Argonauts, the Madness of Odysseus, later romances like Troilus and Cressida) as a single, cohesive narrative with engaging characters and an episodic plot that will satisfy fans of TV shows like Game of Thrones or The Tudors.

The comic works especially well for me as a fan of accurate history, as Shanower is so faithful to the archaeological record that the comic is as close to a
...more
Ted
Apr 02, 2015 Ted rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
This is the second or third time I've read this book. I seriously love everything about the Age of Bronze series thus far. As a fan of greco-roman mythology, I'm loosely versed in several of the stories and characters about the Trojan War, but this comic series makes the entire epic come alive in new ways. Shanower's commitment to historical and archaeological accuracy gives the look of the comic a unique and true feel. Any changes or divergences from source materials I think are permitted since ...more
Ulysses
Jul 24, 2012 Ulysses rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: to-reread
I can't think of many subjects that would seem to lend themselves more handily to a totally sweet graphic novelization than the Trojan War... but on the other hand, I also can't think of many subjects that would seem to require more deadly seriousness and skill in their execution. (For example, whenever I so much as remember the existence of the Ralph Bakshi Lord of the Rings film, I shudder. A great work of art, rendered with haste, slovenliness, or insincerity, is a hundred times more painful ...more
Zach Danielson
Dec 02, 2010 Zach Danielson rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novel
I skimmed the last third of this because I was losing interest. This is part 1 of a (planned) 7-part project to tell the tale of the Trojan War in graphic form. It's very detailed--clearly a lot of research went into this. My biggest criticism is that it's hard to keep track of who's who and where they are. The black and white art is solid, but the characters look too similar to one another, and there are no captions to indicate where the action takes place, or even when the scene is changing.

I
...more
Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
Jun 29, 2013 Jayaprakash Satyamurthy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jayaprakash by: jayaprakash@gmail.com
Shanower strips away the supernatural elements, to present us with a dynamic, exciting but very human take on the ancient epic. I don't mind - the art is really good, and it avoids the idealised image of the ancient Greeek world most popular media tend to give us and the storytelling is well paced. I'd love to see a retelling of the Indian epics that similarly rationalise or minimise supernatural elements, just because such a view is as interesting and valid as any other and could make for an in ...more
Casey Schreiner
Nov 22, 2010 Casey Schreiner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A history of the Trojan War in meticulously researched and drawn graphic novel form.

If you have even the slightest memory of the Greek epics from high school or college (or just an unhealthy appetite for history) you'll recognize a lot of players and scenes here. The gods are mostly absent from the plot, appearing only in dreams and the occasional vision, which grounds the story in human terms and makes the events all the more impressive.

If you get into this series, you've got to be in it for t
...more
Mayank Agarwal
Being a fan of historical/mythological writing I was thrilled to come across a graphic novel based on Troy. Eric Shanower’s Age of Bronze is the most real and complete depiction of the Troy I have come across. His story doesn’t have walking talking gods, instead it’s the human side of the story based on past writings and archaeological findings.

His art is Manga style without the colors, relaying on just black and white. The details in the work is amazing, the background is rich with appropriate
...more
Jrobertus
This is a graphic novel/history. Shanower is rendering the Iliad in a modern media, and it is a lot of fun. He points out that the Greek classics are internally contradictory and so settling on a coherent story is a fun challenge. The drawing is wonderful, but the dialog is a bit abrupt. However, he can't spend too long developing the plot lines. I enjoyed it a good deal and intend to read the subsequent sections.
David Bales
This is a graphic novel retelling the story of the Trojan War. I read the Illiad in high school, but I was mostly too detached or stoned to remember most of it. I love the complexity of this story. Shanower doesn't shrink from the immense task of including all the characters and the twists. I can't wait to get Volume II. It's a 200 page graphic novel, and they've only just left for Troy. I highly recommend it.
Miss
Dec 27, 2015 Miss rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
the first time i read this i recall being deeply impressed with how eric shanower melded the eleventy billion sources there are on the trojan war into a coherent retelling. this time i'm around i'm still impressed but also struck by just how many flop dudes populate this book like dang, paris can't you just leave? leave bro. you are ruining literally EVERYONE'S life, shoo

i know he's not gonna but i had to say it. maybe i'm channeling cassandra

also i'm thinking about how achilles and hector are t
...more
Kiwinyx
Jun 20, 2015 Kiwinyx rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-book
I've always been a fan of Homer's Iliad and Odyssey so this book of course had me hooked from the start, but what I didn't realise, but should know what to expect now of Eric Shanower, is the meticulous and incredible research that has gone into creating this story. In short, it is excellent.

If you want to understand his approach better, there is an interesting footnote at the back of the book, detailing his research journey and the decisions he had to make in choosing a narrative style for this
...more
Tim
Jul 31, 2014 Tim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Some people are kind of miffed that this version cuts out the overt supernatural themes and the active participation of the gods. I don't have a problem with it at all. If you want to get into that then there are plenty of other resources which include them still.

What I liked about this was the attention to historical detail (well, as we best currently understand it) in the costuming, the customs (just check how often the elites are offering libations, that's a lot of dumped wine), the architec
...more
Richard Archambault
I've never been much interested by the Classic studies, other than a brief period when I was fascinated by the Romans as a teenager, and when we studied Greek legends in elementary school. This book came really, really close to changing my mind. Although I found the large cast of characters to be a bit confusing, I was still drawn in to the story. Even though I found the artwork to be well done, and I'm curious about the actual battle tactics used during the war and would be interested in seeing ...more
LTCBuckley
May 05, 2015 LTCBuckley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Age of Bronze is the first half of the events of the trojan war, meaning everything that happened before the battle broke out. In this time Paris was discovered as a long lost prince of troy and was sent on a quest to prove his worth. His job was to recover the former queen of troy from Sparta, but because of a vision from a goddess he chose to take a women named Helen instead. At the same time a sea spirit who was mother to a prophecy child tries to hide her kid by disguising him as a girl. Unf ...more
LOL_BOOKS
LOL I'M READING A COMICS SERIES ABOUT THE TROJAN WAR THAT DRAWS ON A BUNCH OF STORIES AND SOURCES, AND AT THE END OF THE ISSUE I JUST FINISHED THE WRITER IS DD'ING SOME OF HIS SOURCES FOR THIS PART AND HE'S LIKE "WELL NEITHER OF THE POEMS I USED SAY THAT TROILUS WANKED AND CRIED ABOUT CRESSIDA, BUT ARTISTIC LICENCE!"

IS THERE HCGF, OR IS EVERYONE SEXY AND STRAIGHT?

THERE IS HCGF!

I HAD NO IDEA IT EXISTED UNTIL YESTERDAY BUT I AM INTO IT. MY ONLY PROBLEM IS THAT EVERYONE SUFFERS FROM A SERIOUS CASE
...more
Matthew Lloyd
In reading Volume 1 of Eric Shanower's Age of Bronze, it becomes apparent why The Iliad and The Odyssey survived the millennia, while the rest of the epic cycle come down to us only in fragments: it's really, really dull. While the Iliad has themes of glory and revenge, mortality and memory, alongside quite literally epic battle scenes, and the Odyssey is an archetypal story of their-and-back-again, monsters at the edge of the world, loss and recovery, the early scenes from the epic cycle in ...more
Mark A.
May 13, 2009 Mark A. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mark A. Misuraca Jr. 5-10-09
English ORR #4 Mr. Seekamp


Age of Bronze: A Thousand Ships is the kind of book that I think every senior in English twelve should have to read as part of the curriculum. This book is a vivid gateway looking back into Ancient Greece; it provides the reader with a different way to visualize these times. While reading the graphics become alive to you and its almost as if you are watching an old-time cartoon (black and white). It is appropriate for the seniors reading leve
...more
Fanda Kutubuku
Sep 04, 2011 Fanda Kutubuku rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kerja keras Eric Shanower menelurkan novel grafis ini tidak sia-sia. Aku sangat menikmati kisah-kisah epik-mitologi Yunani di seputar Perang Troy. Di bagian pertama ini kisah dibuka dengan kisah Paris si anak gembala di gunung Ida. Gara-gara Paris ingin bertanding di ibukota, Raja Priam menemukan bahwa Paris adalah putranya yang ia kira telah terbunuh. Maka Paris pun menjadi salah satu Pangeran Troy.

Tugas pertamanya adalah menculik Hesione, kakak perempuan Priam yang ditawan Agamemnon, si Raja A
...more
Amauri
Vivid art and solid storytelling that kept me turning pages to see what was next. This is a great model for how the medium can be used for teaching history, ancient lit, archaeology etc. We meet a big cast, get to know a lot of them just well enough, and get a great sense for how culture and relations between them all work. It's clear this is merely the prologue for something epic, but Eric Shanower's art and his selection of events to include keep it from being drawn out exposition.

Shanower's c
...more
Benjamin
Jul 02, 2008 Benjamin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Paula, Brian, Marilyn
I found this an engrossing and deeply edifying adaptation of the stories surrounding this most mythologized of wars. Every person with pretensions to being well-read will know the Trojan War's bare bones. I myself subjected myself to the turgid film "Troy" on the supposition that its success would pave the way for a better film in its wake even as I hound my students with amiable savagery through The Odyssey year in, year out.

The author, however, has taken these varied stories and reshaped them
...more
Cathy
Mar 25, 2009 Cathy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first in a projected 7-volume series on the Trojan War, A Thousand Ships introduces all the major characters and advances the plot from Paris' lowly beginnings as a cowherd to his emergence as a long-lost prince of Troy, ending with the assembly of the Achaean force. This is a great GN, and I look forward to its sequels. The characters are well drawn, both in literal illustration and personality. Conceited Paris, arrogant Agamemmnon, self-pitying Menelaus, destiny-driven Helen -- the Greeks ...more
Ben
Dec 18, 2010 Ben rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ben by: Steve
Shelves: graphic-novels
When I first read the Iliad, I was surprised that it didn't cover the entire history of the Trojan War. Instead, it covers a portion of the last year, and doesn't even contain many of the famous events of the war (the death of Achilles, the Trojan Horse, etc). I wondered if there was a complete (fictional) history of the Trojan War. Apparently, Eric Shanower wondered the same thing. He sets out to incorporate as many ancient sources as he can to write the complete story of the Trojan War, from j ...more
Merin
Jan 04, 2012 Merin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mythology
This was a title I included on my Greek Mythology Reader's Advisory (which was an assignment for my Fantasy Lit course in Grad school), because I wanted to try to incorporate titles for both girls and boys, and this one fit the bill for something that would be suitable for both. I still intend to read Homer's The Illiad and The Odyssey, so this was a nice introduction to Homer's works.

Because the story of the Trojan War is basically history that everyone learns about at some point, I'm not going
...more
Helmut
Mar 03, 2013 Helmut rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
Geschichtsfachbuch

Ich gebe zu, ich bin etwas verwirrt. Mit Preisen überhäuft, in den USA frenetisch gefeiert, und trotzdem hat es mich sehr kalt gelassen. "A Thousand Ships" erzählt die Geschichte von Paris Jugend am Berg Ida und der Entführung von Helena aus Sparta, von Agamemnons Plan, Troja zu überfallen und Rache zu nehmen, Achilles' Untertauchen in Skyros und dem vorgespielten Wahn des Odysseus. Also eigentlich guter Stoff, aus dem sogar der untalentierteste Künstler etwas machen kann.

Tech
...more
Ryan
When I was in high school, and started learning about the Greek myths from the source material rather than from adaptations/sanitations, I was always puzzled by the Trojan War. It seemed to be this big, complex mess, and I was confused as to how it was told. How rude of those ancient Greeks, teenaged me thought, to not put the whole story in one easily digested work?

Of course, as I became more familiar with it, I came to understand that this was because they were more interested in telling indiv
...more
Dan
Mar 28, 2007 Dan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Trojan War buffs, people who liked "The 300"
Hey! Whoa! What happened? Someone finally found a decent way to adapt the epic saga of the Trojan War in a modern visual medium that works!

Hollywood's "Troy" and all those TV movies screwed up the story and completely miscast the major characters (Brad Pitt as Achilles? John Rhys-Davies as Priam?). In graphic novel format, however, Eric Shanower spares no detail of this massive story, calling upon the ancient sources rather than "revisionist fiction". A Thousand Ships is the first of a proposed
...more
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Age of Bronze (10 books)
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