Monday, February 15, 2010

Gates Of Fire

I finally finished Steven Pressfield's Gates Of Fire.  I say finally because I would read some and put it down for a while before taking it up again.  In the last few years I have not managed to read very many books which is in stark contrast to most of the years prior; I was always a voracious reader.  There are a number of reasons for this behavior on my part, none of which are part of this post.  So why did I put this critically acclaimed book down repeatedly?  I struggled with that question as well.

You may wish to read a nicely written, spot on review of the book here at TheSilverKey.

I agree that the book is well written, the material appears well researched, and the picture painted is one of grim reality of extraordinary men.  I should have been a target audience for this book.  I am interested in history, battles and adventure stories.  I do not easily find fault with this book, however it never grabbed me.  I suppose it is that simple.  I was not on the edge of my seat wondering how it would end; we all know how one of the most famous historical battles of all times ends.  Perhaps more importantly I could not identify with any of the characters.  Yes, they are human enough but somehow they were foreign to me.  Without a connection to one or more of the characters it was easy to put the book down, and once down it was not calling to me.

You may have a different experience, and judging by others reviews of this book I am likely in the minority.

1 comment:

  1. Didn't grab you, eh? I thought it would be up your alley, but ah well, different strokes for different folks and all that.

    I liked a couple of the characters very much, which is perhaps why it hooked me. And while I knew about the facts of Thermopylae and its outcome prior to Gates of Fire, the incredible sacrifice of the Spartans was a little lost on me until I read Pressfield's account.


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