Philip Womack

Road to No One

Harry Mount’s Odyssey: Ancient Greece in the Footsteps of Odysseus

By

Bloomsbury 271pp £18.99 order from our bookshop

In The Odyssey, literature’s most famous tourist, Odysseus, escapes the Cyclops by claiming he is outis – no one. A clever ruse; and yet it also suggests that Odysseus must submerge the Iliadic, warrior part of his being and become another kind of hero, reliant upon his wit, before he can return home. In effect, this is the same task that Harry Mount sets himself in his new book, as, recovering from an emotionally draining break-up, he sets out to renew himself, a ‘dried-up husk of a person’.

This isn’t really a travel book. Rather, it’s a memoir-cum-classical history,

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'Full of invention which, at its most pedestrian, is eminently Victorian, and at its most unrestrained wildly imagi… ,
    • 'What in other hands could have been a dry, pedantic account of Christianity’s birth and evolution becomes in Holla… ,
    • RT : One of my favourite literary magazines is celebrating 40 years this year. Here is the September edition of… ,
    • 'Now that the Thames is too fast-flowing to freeze, its spirit’s devotees ... have found other climes for their pri… ,
    • 'Bythell glowers past his till at a world in slow free fall.' on the travails of a second-hand book… ,
    • 'It is a scent of animal wrath, of instinctive need, of brutal life which affects the cultured nostrils of our civi… ,
    • 'The day produced countless stories of chance, of people taking one route or another without realising that the dec… ,