Jelly Fish's Reviews > Athena the Brain

Athena the Brain by Joan Holub
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's review
Jun 17, 12

bookshelves: currently-reading, mythology
Recommended for: Kids
read count: Once

Let's see... well I was definitely glad to find out this book was longer than the first book that I read in this series, which was Persephone the Phony (book #2). However, I'm around half-way done right now and I'm not really enjoying it very much. Yes, I admit the puns made me laugh ("for godness sake!", "brainstorming", and "cheese styx" for example). But I wasn't very interested in the book for two main reasons:
1) Total mythological inaccuracy. A tiny portion of the examples are - Athena burst out of Zeus' head and was immediately made into an Olympian. She did not spend nine years on Earth before she found out she was a goddess. Somehow all these students at the academy end up there at the same time - this is probably just to make it more interesting, but did guys like POSEIDON really need to be included?? Zeus is the principle here, and in the myths Poseidon is actually his older brother, yet he's a student. WTH??
2) This stems from my first point, but basically - why isn't Hermes a student? Of course, I'm only noticing this because I absolutely adore Hermes in every single way possible, but I mean, Hermes is the second-youngest Olympian (actually sometimes he is considered the youngest, because some claim that Dionysus - the youngest Olympian - is actually a lot older). That means he's Athena's younger half-brother. So why is he already an adult god with a full-time messenger job? This makes me sad because, as I've said, I'm obsessed with Hermes and it's horrible that there's such a lack in his appearances.
Another sore point for me: Hermes is the god of inventors. NOT Athena, like the book seems to be suggesting. According to this book, Athena invents the ship, rake, flute, trumpet, and olives among other things.
Although a few sources do cite her as the inventor of the flute, most agree it is Hermes, and he's often seen holding or playing the flute on ancient Greek art.
The other things Athena appears to have invented are obscure and often disputed over by ancient authors also.
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