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The Goddess of Buttercups & Daisies

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  316 ratings  ·  52 reviews
Aristophanes is inconsolable—his rival playwrights are hogging all the local attention, a pesky young wannabe poet won’t leave him alone, his actors can’t remember their lines, and his own festival sponsor seems to be conspiring against him, withholding direly needed funds for set design and, most importantly, giant phallus props. O woe, how can his latest comedy convince ...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published May 12th 2015 by Soft Skull Press (first published April 2nd 2015)
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3.69  · 
Rating details
 ·  316 ratings  ·  52 reviews

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May 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lovely book, feelgood reading, not only for students of classical Greek, but funny, very human, good subject. For those who know about ancient Greece lots of inside jokes, for those who don't just fun reading.
Apr 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humour
Martin Millar is on form for this one, if you've ever read any of his before you will know what to expect.

It's set in ancient Greece during the festival of Dionysus. War has been raging for 10 years. Aristophanes is rehearsing his comedy 'Peace' while the pro war faction are trying to sabotage it with a lack of funds and Phallus malfunctions. Socrates is wandering around being wise, Luxos The Poet is trying to get his poetry heard. (A past life of Lux the Poet). A wood (or river) nymph whose m
Fergus Murray
Jun 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've been a fan of Martin Millar for a long time, and he's on good form here. It's a lighter read than perhaps any of his other books, and that's saying something. For all its cheerfulness and the sometimes air-headed optimism of a couple of the main characters, though, it's by no means a stupid book. It deals with big themes like war and propaganda sharply but with good humour, and the details of the setting make it obvious the author has a real history-geek love of the period.
Alister Black
Another brilliant book from Martin Millar, I even learned a bit about Greek drama although it is not every book that can be spoiled by looking up Aristophanes on wikipedia. I may begin to worship the goddess Athena.
Jul 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an easy reading, light weight comedy with a deeper meaning included.

Aristophanes the famous ancient Greek playwright, is having a hell of a time getting his latest piece of work called 'Peace' ready in time for the finale of the festival of Dionysia. War has been raging for over a decade and funds are short. The Goddess Athena cannot by Zeus' decree leave Mount Olympus, so sends her Amazonian handmaiden and enlists a River Nymph, who has unfortunately left town, to help. So Metis the nym
Jul 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
This account of the staging of Aristophanes' play Peace c421 BC may not be exactly how it went down, but it's an engaging comic novel. Aristophanes is having trouble putting on a play about peace in a warlike climate, eternally hopeful lyric poet Luxos is trying to get a break, shady generals and weapons manufacturers want the upcoming peace talks to fail, a deity is sowing discord throughout Athens, and into the middle of all this walk am Amazon and a wood nymph whose powers are not quite as ad ...more
Angie Lisle
Sep 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
A modern spin on the ancient world showing parallels of human nature between then and now.

Set in Athens of Ancient Greece during the City Dionysia (the festival of Dionysus) after 10-years of war with Sparta.

The story is told through multiple POVs. Some characters are fictional; some, like Luxos the poet and Metris the demi-goddess, are figments of Millar's imagination but a few characters, like Athena and Bremusa, are borrowed from mythology. And a couple characters, like Aristophanes and Soc
Sep 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
A fan of Martin's Kalix series, I was initially distracted by the similarities between some of the characters in this book and those in the Kalix series. That combined with a slow start made it easy to stop reading. At least in the beginning.

Once I got past those stumbling blocks, it was a delightful read, especially the scenes involving the bubbly wood nymph, Metris.

Compared with the books of the Kalix series, this book is a little shorter and has a much simpler plot, free of the multitude of s
May 22, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved this, very entertaining and an easy read. The tale hops between the dealings of various characters in ancient Athens as they attempt to bring an end to the decade-old war with Sparta. Not only do we have the historical saga of Aristophanes the playwright, but the dealings of goddesses, nymphs and near-immortal Amazons interweaving into a world that might have been and definitely should have been (and, I personally suspect, still pretty is).
Recommended to all lovers of Classical mythology a
Jun 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads, physical
From the beginning of this book i felt there was something familiar about it. About half way through the book i realized to reminded me of Terry Pratchett, that being a good thing. The pace, style of writing and overall positive feeling through out the work. I enjoyed this book and will be looking forward to reading more from the author.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.
Ry Herman
Mar 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
In an Athens on the brink of ruin after ten years with war with Sparta, a cranky Aristophanes attempts to stage his play Peace, while dark forces attempt to disrupt both the performance and the diplomatic talks to end the war. This book is somewhat slight, but amusing enough. There are a lot of enjoyable references for people at least somewhat familiar with the period, but it can certainly still be read and liked by someone with no such familiarity.
Ruth Feathers
Jun 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I've read other Millar books, but I don't think I've fallen in love with his other characters like I did with Metris and Luxos. Presented in different voices like the tragedies and comedies it's modeled on. Quick, fun read.
May 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There are few authors I enjoy as much as Martin Millar. I love his marriage of scattered, madcap plot and sympathetic, human characters.
Jack Bates
Dec 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christmas-2018
I love Martin Millar.

This one's set in Ancient Greece - the plot reminded me very vaguely of Crown of Violet by Geoffrey Trease, because it's about writing plays for the festival, and because Socrates is a character. Other than that it's the usual Millaresque fare, where people are foiled in their attempts to achieve their aims partly by their own personalities and partly by interference from external forces, in this case the goddess Athena and sundry other Olympians as well as citizens who woul
T.K. Flor
Jun 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The Goddess Of Buttercups And Daisies is based on historical events and famous figures in Athens circa 421BC. The character of playwright Aristophanes, the peace talks between Athena and Sparta, and the comedy competition during the Spring Festival are entwined in a story that combines adventure, political intrigues and characters from Greek mythology. The writing is seamless and allows one to get totally immersed – it felt like I stood right beside Aristophanes when he labored to stage his come ...more
Elena Gaillard
May 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
An enjoyable romp through ancient Athens in Millar's usual comic satirical style. Athena, now confined to Mount Olympus, does what she can to guide her favorite cities towards peace using some rather imperfect tools -- that is, minor deities and longtime companions -- amidst the lengthy and draining Athens-Sparta war.

Aristophanes is a major viewpoint character, and other distinguished names from history make little Easter-egg appearances. The female characters are very much in the forefront how
Russell Uresti
Feb 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
I always enjoy Martin Millar's work - his humor and subject matter are often unlike anything you'd see from other authors. Goddess of Buttercups & Daisies is quite a bit more PG than his other books (which are often filled with copious amounts of drug use, violence, sex, and other deviant behaviors), but the mockery in it all is quite fun.

I feel like this story may be more enjoyable if you've read Lux The Poet first (as Luxos is meant to be a past life of his), but it's still fun even if you
Jul 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
This was a quick, charming read. This book would be good for anyone who would enjoy a light comedy based on Greek history and Greek mythology. The characters were unique and I liked following their struggles and development throughout the story.
Mar 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
(4.5) Oh my, Martin Millar on form is a wondrous thing. Every time I have a run of stupidbrain now, I'm going to assume Laet the Goddess of Bad Decision-making is in the vicinity.
Jul 11, 2017 rated it liked it
The Goddess of Buttercups & Daisies was a fun, quick read (even though it took me a long time to finish: school got in the way).

Admittedly, it felt a little disappointing. I was a huge fan of Millar's Good Fairies of New York and really liked Lonely Werewolf Girl, and I held this book against the yardstick of Millar's previous work. It fell a little short. The characters felt a little too flat, and the plot a little too convenient. Still, the characters were likable, and Millar is excellent
Aug 06, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
2.5 stars but rounded it up to 3. I was really interested in the premise of this book, but actually picking it up to finish it proved a struggle. Maybe it was the multiple person perspectives that made it hard for me to get into the story? It doesn't usually affect how quickly or easily I read a book but there were so many POVs, and quite a lot of them were only half a page or page long, which to me, made the story judder instead of flowing. I bumped the rating up to 3 stars instead of rounding ...more
May 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sruprises
A funny, farcical comedy. Very witty & silly with a little romance thrown in. Smartly written.
I laughed out loud at the zaniness that happens to Aristophanes while trying to put on his play.
The characters are engaging.

Recommended for those who liked the classic greek & roman plays, books, and stories about the Greek gods.
Or those who want an amusingly witty laugh after a long, dull day at work.
Ann Fisher
May 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I never read speculative fiction--if that's even what this is--but I adored this book. The characters are absolutely endearing, from the luckless poet with the cheap lyre to the grouchy Amazon who would just like to settle everything by fighting, thank you very much, to the spacy nymph who isn't really sure what powers she has and anyway, is much more interested in the luckless poet. I would be delighted to read another ten books about these characters, but instead I guess I have to go check out ...more
Aug 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
I'm not sure if this is actually a fantastic book or not. It probably relies a bit too much on references to Athenian history. But if you like Greek history and have already read a bunch of stuff by Aristophanes, it's really great. This manages to be a homage to Aristophanes and Athens that's both hilarious and heartwarming.
Steph Bennion
Mar 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, humour
This was a fun read. I've a soft spot for 'Greek Gods amongst mortals' stories and the Classical Athens setting was nicely done. It got a bit predictable towards the end but the humour made up for that...
Seth Boyd
Jan 30, 2019 rated it it was ok
Normally, Martin Millar’s books make me laugh out loud. This one did not. I think I may have smirked. Once. The story was slightly engaging and we need conversations about peace, but I would not recommend this one to others.
Michael Ritchie
Nov 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Interesting take on Ancient Greece, with mortals and the divine beings existing together quite naturally. Broadly funny.
Feb 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Another clever, well-written, and amusing book by Martin Millar. I do not understand why more people do not read his books.
Jan 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Martin Millar is basically Neil Gaiman who talks about things I'm actually interested in.
Harold Force
Go read the real plays!

In 1961 I had a college prof who was Greek and - really - a poet. I think he would suggest a re-write of this book.
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Martin Millar is a critically acclaimed Scottish writer from Glasgow, now resident in London. He also writes the Thraxas series of fantasy novels under the pseudonym Martin Scott.

The novels he writes as Martin Millar dwell on urban decay and British sub-cultures, and the impact this has on a range of characters, both realistic and supernatural. There are elements of magical realism, and the feelin