The story of Hera, Queen of the Gods, and the heroes who won her favor.
Volume 3 of Olympians, Hera: The Goddess and Her Glory, introduces readers to the Queen of the Gods and Goddesses in the Pantheon. This volume tells the tales of the many heroes who sought and won Hera’s patronage, most notably Hercules.
In Olympians, O’Connor draws from primary documents to reconstruct and retell classic Greek myths. But these stories aren’t sedate, scholarly works. They’re action-packed, fast-paced, high-drama adventures with monsters, romance, and not a few huge explosions.
O’Connor’s vibrant, kinetic art brings ancient tales to undeniable life, in a perfect fusion of super-hero aesthetics and ancient Greek mythology.
About the Author
George O'Connor is an author, illustrator and cartoonist. His first graphic novel, Journey Into Mohawk Country, used as its sole text the actual historical journal of the seventeenth-century Dutch trader Harmen Meyndertsz van den Bogaert, and told the true story of how New York almost wasn't. He followed that up with Ball Peen Hammer, the first graphic novel written by playwright Adam Rapp, a dark, dystopian view of a society's collapse. Now he has brought his attention to Olympians, an ongoing series retelling the classic Greek myths in comics form. In addition to his graphic novel career, O'Connor has published several children's picture books, including the New York Times best-selling Kapow, Sally and the Some-Thing, and Uncle Bigfoot. He lives in Brooklyn, NY.
Reading Group Guide
1. Hera is the goddess of marriage, yet her own marriage to Zeus is full of fights. Who do you think is to blame for that, Zeus or Hera? (Watch out for lightning bolts and giant snakes when answering this question.)
2. When Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster created Superman in the 1930's, they consciously modeled him on Heracles. What are some aspects that Superman and Heracles have in common?
3. Heracles and Jason are two of the greatest heroes of Ancient Greece, and are both closely connected to Hera. But their respective relationships with her are quite different. Why do you think that is?
4. Many of the names in this book will be very familiar to modern readers, like Atlas and Heracles. What are some modern things that have names taken from Green mythology?
5. Do you think it's fair that Hera punishes the children and girlfriends of Zeus? Is it fair that Zeus keeps cheating on Hera?
6. The number twelve comes up often in the Greek myths. Heracles performs twelve labors; there are twelve Olympians, and twelve Titans before them. Why is the number twelve so important? What other numbers come up a lot in the Greek myths?
7. Heracles is given a choice between a hard life, in which he would have to work for everything but would be remembered forever, and an easy life, in which where everything would be given to him. Did he make the right choice? What would you choose?
8. Very few people believe in the Greek gods today. Why do you think it is important that we still learn about them?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Hera: The Goddess and her Glory is a graphic novel which chronicles Hera's early marriage to Zeus and challenges to Heracles. Hera marries Zeus and is frustrated by his infedelity. She agrees to nurse one of Zeus' children from a mistress. She names him Heracles, or the glory of Hera. Hera agrees to allow Heracles to live on Mount Olympus if he completes three tasks. He completes them and is given a few more for good measure. Heracles completes those tasks and is allowed to live on Mount Olympus.I enjoyed reading this graphic novel. I have never had an intrinsic interest in mythology and found this book enjoyable. In a classroom setting, this could be used for students who, like myself, may struggle with reading classics.
Reason for Reading: Next in the series.This much awaited 3rd volume in The Olympians series was quickly read up. I'm quite familiar with the contents of this one and enjoyed the author's presentation of events. There are many stories and versions the author had his pick of which way he could go with these characters and he's chosen an age appropriate story and one which connects Hera and Heracles together perfectly. While the book does tell the story of Hera, there does come a point went it becomes the story of Heracles (ie. Hercules) whose name "Heracles" means "Glory of Hera". The book has mild violence, mythological creatures are killed but it never enters into the truly gruesome or s*xual nature of the original myths, keeping the material age appropriate. Hera and Heracles both have stubborn natures and as the book progresses one can tell they are more alike than they would freely agree. Hera's main story is told here but Heracles doesn't leave much more left to tell so I won't be surprised if he doesn't get his own book. But I do expect that Hera will keep popping up in future volumes to throw her curses or sympathies around and now we understand why she's been given such a bad rap all these years. It's all your fault, you philandering, Zeus!