Philip Womack

April 2007 Children’s Books Round-up

Here Lies Arthur

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Scholastic 304pp £12.99 order from our bookshop

Snakehead

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Orion 224pp £9.99 order from our bookshop

Double or Die

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Puffin 400pp £6.99 order from our bookshop

There is a tendency for novelists to focus on the way that a hero is presented, rather than the hero himself; Achilles, they argue, wasn’t really so much better than everyone else, he just had a good PR agent. And in a way, they are right to do so – a hero’s ‘kleos’, or ‘glorious reputation’, was all he really had. It is fun to sling mud at heroes; but, if one has grown up enthralled by the mystique of Achilles, King Arthur et al, one can always return to that pristine image, however much it has been damaged.

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