Goddess of Yesterday

 
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4.4 (5)
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Goddess of Yesterday
Publisher
Age Range
10+
Release Date
June 11, 2002
ISBN
0440229308
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At age six Anaxandra is taken by King Nicander to be a companion to his crippled daughter on the island of Siphnos. Anaxandra has adjusted to her new life when, six years later, Siphnos is sacked by pirates, and she is the sole survivor. When a fleet of ships stops on the island to investigate, she assumes the identity of Princess Callisto to survive. The ships belong to Menelaus, king of Sparta, and he takes her back to Sparta with him. But Helen, wife of Menelaus, does not believe that this child is Princess Callisto. Anaxandra manages to stay out of harm’s way—until Paris and Aeneas arrive. When Menelaus and his men depart to attend his grandfather’s funeral, Paris and Helen’s passionate affair plunges Sparta and Troy into war.

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Worthy of the gods!
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
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0.0
Reader reviewed by Megan

When Anaxandra (not Alexandra, as she constantly corrects people) is taken as hostage to be a companion to a king's daughter, she figures that she'll be home in time for bed. However, she finds out this is not true, and spends some time on the island. When pirates attack the village, everyone but her is killed. She pretends to be Medusa and frightens them off. She assumes the identity of Princess Callisto, hoping that the king who finds her will be kind. He is - but his wife, Helen of Troy, isn't. Helen and her lover Paris ransack the island of Sparta, then travel back to Troy, starting a large scale war. A pretty great book, one worthy of the gods! :]
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What a good book
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4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
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0.0
Reader reviewed by Sid Day

Caroline B. does it again with another great book. I personally love history and the greeks so this book was perfect for me. Caroline's book although fiction did touch a little on fact. I think it was pure geniouse to depict Helena of Troy as an evil saddistic women. This book truly is a work of art.
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A Magical Book
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5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
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0.0
Reader reviewed by Mairi

Anaxandra, handmaid to Callisto of Siphnos when pirates sack the city, drives the foes of her city away by fixing an octopus to her head and cursing them as Medusa, her fearsomely ugly patron goddess who has snakes instead of hair. Fortunately, or unfortunately, she is adopted by Menelaus, the King of Sparta, who does no know that he is throwing her right into the middle of the bloody Trojan War that his wife Helen is about to cause.

My interest in Greek mythology led me to read this book time and time again, though I never saw the magic in it that I saw in other books, and after a time I affectionately retired it to the back of my bookshelf. It was a month ago, when my interest had faded from fanaticism to a mild obsession, that I took it down again and instantly felt all that interest revived, and more- this is now one of my all time favorite books, and by far the most magical of them all.

This is a wonderful book for anyone provided they read it slowly, paying attention to the beauty of the sentences and the exquisite characterization that makes this book so readable.
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an epic adventure!
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
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0.0
Reader reviewed by Dominique

At a young age, Anaxandra, daughter of the ruler of a small, unnamed island of the Aegean Sea, was taken hostage by King Nicander to become a companion to his daughter, Callisto. But when pirates attack the island which King Nicander rules, they either kill or take people hostage—the only survivor is Anaxandra. But King Menelaus of Sparta stops to investigate the trouble at the island. Anaxandra takes up Callisto’s identity and Menelaus takes her back to Sparta. Anaxandra befriends Menelaus and Helen’s children, but Helen, stirs trouble for Anaxandra. In this version, Helen is vain and cold—how will Anaxandra live with such a powerful and cruel person against her?

When Helen flees with her new lover, Paris, to Troy, Anaxandra goes with them under another identity—this time, as Hermione, Helen’s son—to help Hermione, whom Anaxandra has befriended. Anaxandra also goes to help care for Helen’s baby (a son.) It’s up to Anaxandra to fend for her young son, but in this huge city that is all new to Anaxandra, how will she survive. Will she make it, especially when she has such powerful enemies? Other familiar characters of the myth of the Trojan War come into this story—Hector, Andromache, Cassandra, and more! Soon, a war between the Trojans and the Spartans breaks out and Anaxandra must protect Helen’s son. Thrown into a world of trouble, battles, cruelty, and hardships, Anaxandra must fight for her survival, as well as the baby boy’s. Will she survive? Who will help her? Who will win this war? What will happen after the war? Read this book to find out!

There were some fantastic descriptions in this book and it was a great adventure in general—a book that myth lovers may enjoy!
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Great Storytelling
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5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
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0.0
Reader reviewed by Grace

Goddess of Yesterday, by Caroline B. Cooney, is an awesome historical fiction book about what caused the war between Sparta and Troy through the eyes of twelve-year-old Anaxandra. She was first kidnapped by King Nicander from her home on an island because her father was a pirate and owed the king money. Anaxandra became companion to King Nicander's daughter, Callisto. They lived peacefully for six years, until a group of pirates came to King Nicander's land and killed everyone. Anaxandra managed to escape into the sea, and when she saw an octopus, she put it on her head and pretended to be Medusa, scaring away the pirates. She lived alone for several days, until King Menelaus of Sparta came. Anaxandra thought fast and guiltily took Princess Callisto's identity, for if she said she was just a plain servant girl, she would be killed for sure. Even though she knew the consequences, she made believe she was Callisto, and was taken to King Menelaus's country and to be his daughter, Hermione's companion. But King Menelaus's wife, Helen, the most beautiful woman in the world and half goddess, despised Anaxandra and didn't believe she was really Callisto, but this notion was dismissed by her husband. Then one day, Prince Paris of Troy came, and, as the famous story goes, falls in love with Helen and takes her. Anaxandra is forced to pretend to be Hermione and is taken to Troy, where the great war begins.

Caroline B. Cooney weaves an amazing, complex story about the Trojan War filled with imagination and identity stealing. This book is a fun and entertaining read if you're looking for some historical fiction.
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