The Epic of Glenda Mesh

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We’re all familiar with or at least have heard of the Epic of Gilgamesh in some form. One of the oldest pieces of literature in history: a collection of five Sumerian poems dating to 2100 BCE. We know of the powerful and domineering Gilgamesh, king of Babylon, and the wild man named Enkidu, who was created by the gods to stop Gilgamesh. It’s a long poem that can seem dry and a little too much, especially when it’s assigned reading, and the young reader has no choice. Thankfully, Christopher Fryer has come up with something totally cool and new in The Epic of Glenda Mesh to make the story a lot more entertaining and easier to read.

Glenda Mesh doesn’t seem to care about anybody except herself, and that goes for her high school classes and anyone else at the school. But then she’s got rich parents and is the big name in the grand old city of Babylon, and everyone knows not to mess with her. And as she stands at the starting line of the track, she prepares herself for another easy race that she will win with little effort, as she towers over everyone else in stature and ego. And then they’re off, and Glenda does eventually win, but it’s not as easy as she thought. There was some competition from this red-headed little newcomer named Enkidu. What gives? Doesn’t she know the drill?

But Enkidu had a tough upbringing and has little patience for larger-than-life characters who have become way too big for their boots. And it doesn’t take long for the sentiment of Babylon to subtly shift against Glenda for her tyrannical and grandstanding ways. But she wants things to be like they used to, so she vows to get the support and “approval” of the people of Babylon back by chasing after a psychopathic criminal that even Babylon’s finest don’t want to deal with. Naturally, it will involve some help from an unlikely ally. But Glenda vows to do it because “being a villain is easy; being a hero is hard.”

The voice in the Epic of Glenda Mesh grabs you right away in a compelling and fun tone that says you’re in for a real treat and a real adventure. The characters are complex and interesting and constantly surprising and entertaining, so you never know what’s going to happen next, but you really want to find out. Fryer has flipped some things around in this ancient classic and given us a story that’s a sheer delight and sure to be a hit with teens.

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Star Count 4.5/5
Format Trade
Page Count 525 pages
Publisher Self-Published
Publish Date 18-Jun-2022
ISBN 9798836531669 Buy this Book
Issue September 2022
Category Young Adult