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3.70  ·  Rating details ·  4,100 ratings  ·  294 reviews
The siege of Troy has lasted almost ten years. Inside the walled city, food is becoming scarce and the death toll is rising. From the heights of Mount Olympus, the gods keep watch. But Aphrodite, goddess of love, is bored with the endless, dreary war. She turns her attention to two sisters: Marpessa, who is gifted with god-sight and serves as handmaiden to Helen, the most ...more
Published September 1st 2002 by Turtleback Books (first published March 17th 2000)
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Average rating 3.70  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,100 ratings  ·  294 reviews

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Aug 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Adele Geras takes the story of the Iliad, and while recreating it in way that mingles high adventure, tragedy, humour and fatalism, focuses specifically on the fates of five young people and is essentially a romance set in the framework of the Trojan War.
While the war rages, and Hector leads the Trojan armies in protection of the cities walls against the Greek hordes of Agamemnon, the goddess of desire Aphrodite plays a cruel trick, as is the habit of the Greek gods to toy with the lives of
I swear, if one more god turns up and tells one of the characters exactly what is going to happen only for them to forget everything about the entire encounter 30 seconds later, I will scream. It happens every other chapter! They're the Greek Gods of the Parthenon, the epitome of vain! They wouldn't want to be forgotten! I call shenanigans!

Excellent writing, depressing and poorly handled (and someone else's) plot, "eh" original characters. I'm not quite sure why this won so many awards.
Jun 10, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The worst re-telling of all time. Nothing original, except for a ridiculously juvenile love story of minor characters that was more filler than story. Exceptionally bad dialogue.
I assumed this was a debut novel because it was so bad. I was astonished, upon completion, to find that Geras has written many books. I would say 'Don't quit your day job' but apparently this is her day job.
Sep 16, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
It's a sad time in the city of Troy. The war has been going on for 10 years and it has spread it's roots into each and every household, spreading misery and death and sorrow. Soldiers go out to war every morning, leaving behind widows and orphans; women spend the day in terror, wondering whether their husbands, sons and brothers will come back or not. Food is scarce, thanks to the siege and money is spent endlessly on the war, on the weapons and food for the horses. Anything that is moving is ...more
Dec 29, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was pretty boring. It wasn't on my list of books, nor was it recommended by anyone, so I took a chance. The only reason I got it was because I just finished Les Miserable and wanted a short one to off set that monster.

The story is basically just what goes on in the life of a few girls who live in Troy during their war with the Greeks. It had no plot or if it did it was so bland and transparent that I didn't catch on.

Random gods would appear to different character for no reason
Jul 28, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-read
This was a great retelling of the Trojan war, but from the perspective of normal people. None of our main characters were big heroes in the war. Ten years in, the war is still going strong. Sisters Marpessa and Xanthe play different roles inside the city, but remain close. Xanthe is a healer of wounded soliders. Marpessa is a weaver who can see the gods. When Eros strikes Xanthe with an arrow from his bow, the sisters become entangled in a love story as complicated as the gods.

I loved seeing the
Noor Aboul-Hosn
Dec 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Troy is on my top ten list of favorite books. Troy is set during the Trojan War. Although this story does not narrate the exact events of the Trojan War, you will recognize famous matters like the Trojan Horse, the death of Achilles, the death of Hector, the burning of the villages in Troy and more. It's near to the end of the war and the gods always butt in to try and "help". On more than one occasion has Aphrodite made characters fall in love, causing love triangles, sister feuds and secrecy. ...more
Jun 14, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I expected more only because of how many awards it has won. I was hoping I could recommend it to my teenage students but there is too much sex and adult content for Taiwanese teens. How did it win children's book awards?
Not a bad story, just not very creative and far too ridiculously juvenile love story. Random gods and goddesses would appear to a character for no reason whatsoever. They didn't add to the story in the least and the characters would forget anything they would told by them anyway.
Troy is a good retelling of the Trojan War from essentially the beginning of Homer's Iliad to just after the fall of Troy. Geras's heroines are Xanthe, nurse to the son of Hector and Andromache, and Marpessa, handmaiden to Helen; she weaves her own characters skillfully into the tapestry of the characters familiar from Greek mythology. We all know how the story ends, but by providing her own characters and making them sympathetic, so that the reader wants to find out what happens to them, Geras ...more
May 19, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Entertaining book. It took a couple of chapters to adjust to the ways it’s written but after that it was very easy to read. I loved the characters of Xanthe and Marpessa and it was fun to see their relationship as sisters evolve. Would recommend to anyone interested in the Trojan War and looking for a light historical fiction read.
I tried, but I couldn't move beyond page 133.

While I can appreciate that Geras is introducing the myths of the Trojan War to young readers, I fault her for not making it her own. I have read the Iliad, the Odyssey, the Fall of Troy, and the Aeneid, and this story just felt like a less-interesting retelling. I couldn't get invested in either the story of the three servant girls or the re-told events of the Trojan War. There just wasn't enough of a focus.

The chapters are jolting--very short,
Carrie Slager
After reading The Song of Troy by Colleen McCullough, Troy by Adèle Geras just pales in comparison. That doesn’t mean it’s a bad book. It just means it isn’t the best book about Troy.

Troy follows the story of Marpessa and Xanthe, two sisters trying to live their lives during the last months of the Trojan War. They’re both three dimensional characters with interesting backgrounds and we get to see them through other characters’ perspectives, but they’re not really all that memorable. There’s
Peter Velic
Sep 19, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Adele Geras did an incredible job writing this book. Although it may not have been the most exciting at times, Geras did a very good job in creating characters all intertwined in a very unique romantic situation. She pulls family apart in this book all over a love that, at times, seems very unreliable and almost fails. As the book goes on, the romance between characters start to get quite complicated and the battle between the Greeks and Trojans intensifies greatly. Geras writes the latter half ...more
Sam K
Jan 17, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think that the authors theme is to always stay true to family. The author was showing that a lot of people might do something wrong but in the end it is important to stay true to family no matter what happens. This book takes place in ancient Troy during the Trojan War .There are three main characters in this book Xanthe, Marppesa, and Alastor although there are many more characters I thought that these were the most important. The story is told by all three of these people depending on the ...more
Lindsay Tandy
I was looking forward to reading this book about the Trojan War but it didn't really work for me - until perhaps the last couple of chapters which were moving and shocking. It takes place during the final stages of the ten year Trojan War and it is written from the perspectives of different everyday Trojans - mainly women - living behind the wall in Troy. There is a range of characters, ranging from the legendary players in this well-known myth to the lesser known characters, including Hector's ...more
Rashmi Umashankar
I'm studying for my Greek Mythology final (yay for fun electives!) and I couldn't help but think of where my fascination for Greek myths started. Before you say the obvious, nope, it wasn't Percy Jackson. Don't get me wrong, the Percy Jackson series helped me firmly establish my love for greek myth but it wasn't what got me started in the first place. It was this seemingly random choice that I made at a bookstore that I don't even remember that started it all. Troy by Adele Geras isn't a great ...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
I started out a little hesitant about this story. I wasn't sure what I thought about the oh-so-human gods popping into the story, but it gradually wore on me until I really began to love this feature of the book. The characters (Helen, Paris, Hector, Aphrodite, Eros) are mostly familiar to me, though I'm not sure if some of the young people (Marpessa? Xanthe? Alastor?) were present in the original story. It's all well done, I think. The almost-Shakespearean romantic mixups between Marpessa and ...more
Shayla Smith
Apr 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is different than others i've read about the Iliad. It is told in the point of view of servants. This author does a wonderful job of creating twists in plot and weaving frustration into every chapter. The main characters are loveable and experience the trojan war with the known characters i.e. Helen, Paris, Andronmache, Hector, etc. as backgroud characters rather than the foreground.
I loved this book! it kept my attention through out, this author is very good at writing books with
Feb 29, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dropped
DNF at page 80
It's an alright read, but I couldn't suffer through the long-winded purple prose. Contrary to most of the reviews on here, I didn't find it to be too full of romance- it was really far too much world-building. I understand not everyone knows about Achilles or Troy or Paris and Helen, but the insane amount of history lesson I received made my head spin. Geras might've been better off writing a nonfiction book- her characters were enjoyable and realistic, sure, but it was too much
Full review at Booklikes

Interesting retelling of Troy as it focuses primary on women and little people – the soldiers that no one cares about. So if you are thinking of reading big battle scenes, not so much for you. The primary focus is two sisters who eventually care about the same man (who really doesn’t seem that great when you think about it) – perhaps something of reverse gender Paris/Helen/Menelaus triangle.
Dayna Smith
The epic siege of Troy told through the eyes of young people trapped within its walls. Primarily the story of two sisters Xanthe and Marpessa cursed by the goddess of love, Aphrodite, to love the same boy. Marpessa serves as the handmaiden for Helen. Xanthe is nursemaid for Andromache, Hector's wife. Will either sister escape the arrows of Eros? Will anyone escape Troy alive? A fantastic book! It does contain mature thematic content, violence, and profanity. It is Troy from an insider's point of ...more
I picked up this book because I love anything to do with Ancient Greece and I've read other things by Adèle Geras and liked them. This book didn't disappoint; the only thing I didn't like was when the gods came down and spoke with the mortals. It could have been handled better - the way the townsfolk suddenly suffered amnesia after the gods had left got a bit irritating after a while.
Jul 23, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I skim the blurbs about books because some blurbs give away more about the plot than I like. Well, should have read more about this one! It was ok. A little weird and not a very good love story at all!
Jan 21, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book was strange. The characters didn't do anything for me. The plot wasn't anything spectacular and I felt there wasn't really any new spin on the old tale. The random appearances of the Gods got annoying at time. I just didn't understand this book.
It was a really good romance, war book. Really good characters, fantastic setting, book pulled me in and some really marvelous action scenes and blood baths.
I was never into reading History books or Historical Fiction stories until about a year ago. That’s when I read History my mind started to form it into it’s own love story, soap opera, or young adult novel. All of the sudden, History just wasn’t facts about yesterday; they were stories about people like us today.

Now, I’m not going to lie, I didn’t just stumble along this book; it itself didn’t pop out and grab my interest. There’s a movie that my family watches frequently called “Troy” which has
I did like the book to some extent. In the beginning, it was rather slow and so much romance plots that it was hard to figure out what was going on. You needed to wait a while to actually see what this book was leading to. I think the idea was really good, and a different approach for the Greek gods to influence the life of the people so much and take charge, it was basically them playing chess with the people. But it was hard to understand the purposes of the different actions and what they ...more
Nov 23, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
A novel set during the Tojan War, but from the viewpoint of the serving women (and men).
The more ordinary people, rather than the heroes.
The characters went through an awful lot of pain and unhappiness, this was war after all. But it was also about love and the failure to find love with Aphrodite being cruel to just about everyone. It was tiring having such cruelty served up so much.
I liked the fact that the gods appeared in person, but every time one appeared to a mortal the author felt it
Nov 19, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Zackary Williams
Mr. Paterra
13 November 2018
Troy Report
Troy by Adele Geras is a historical fiction novel was one of the worst books I have read. I didn’t like the book because it spent over 80% on a love triangle, another 5% transitioning between too many characters, 12% was the tragedy of the royal family, the last 3% was the fighting in the plan and the sacking of Troy itself. The primary topic was to see the war from a patient perspective. It was a slow and uninteresting read that is
Robbie He
I gave this book 2 stars out of 5 because I think the movie is more interesting than the book and I am not that interested in Greek mythology. It was difficult for me to read this book, I had trouble following the story and the characters. I felt like the story is just about girls living in Troy during their war with the Greeks, and random gods that add nothing with the story would just appear for no reason. The plot was too bland for me that I was not even interested in the story. The movie ...more
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Adèle Geras FRSL (born 15 March 1944) is an English writer for young children, teens and adults. Her husband was the Marxist academic Norman Geras and their daughter Sophie Hannah is also a novelist and poet.

Geras was born in Jerusalem, British Mandatory Palestine. Her father was in the Colonial Service and she had a varied childhood, living in countries such as Nigeria, Cyprus, Tanzania, Gambia
“You can't ask questions like that. Everything has to be done in the right order, or the whole narrative falls to pieces. One thing has to follow another. You can't skip over anything or move things along faster. One step at a time.” 5 likes
“If you expect terrible things…then they don't surprise you, and all good things are like wonderful gifts.” 1 likes
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