Well, the elementary-school version anyway. The sex and stuff cleaned up a bit. It isn't in iambic pentameter rhyme like the old versions I remember, full of olde vocabularie and the like. This version, covering just the first part of the adventure, was a thrilling read for the boys. We were introduced to the gods on Mt. Olympus and this idea that if you made one god happy, other gods might not like that because they fight with each other. Athena is Odysseus's friend, and the men pray constantly to Zeus, the king of the gods or the god of thunder.
The best part of the story was the skewering of the Cyclops's eyeball. Wonderful description of the heated spear sizzling in his eyeball, too. We finished with the story in a day (like I said, it's the kids' version and doesn't even cover the whole story).
Elf was jumping and stimming through the whole thing. Emperor wanted to act out the eyeball popping part. We read a bit of an explanation on the gods and goddesses and I talked about how people REALLY worshipped these gods and godesses long ago. The apostle Paul talked with some of them. So don't expect Odysseus to start praying to Jesus instead of Zeus at the end of the story, because he wasn't a Christian.
Elf's jaw dropped. He wasn't a Christian? You could tell the kid is wondering how such a horrible thing could be. Um, Elf... didn't you hear the guy praying to Zeus and Athena the whole time? Yes? Ok... and you thought he was a Christian... ? You did?
Sometimes you think these little ones understand so much, but then you realize every now and then you have to go back and re-explain stuff. Elf was VERY UPSET when I told him what happened to Persephone. Elf... these are STORIES. You know, made up people? How could Persephone spend only "winter" in the underworld when you know that "winter" happens during our summer in Australia? This is not possible unless there are two Persephones. It's a pretend story, like Spongebob. You don't think you're really going to meet Spongebob, do you?