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The Odyssey: A Graphic Novel

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With bold imagery and an ear tuned to the music of Homer’s epic poem, Gareth Hinds reinterprets the ancient classic as it’s never been told before. "Gareth Hinds brings THE ODYSSEY to life in a masterful blend of art and storytelling. Vivid and exciting, this graphic novel is a worthy new interpretation of Homer’s epic." —Rick Riordan, author of the Percy Jackson & the Olymp With bold imagery and an ear tuned to the music of Homer’s epic poem, Gareth Hinds reinterprets the ancient classic as it’s never been told before. "Gareth Hinds brings THE ODYSSEY to life in a masterful blend of art and storytelling. Vivid and exciting, this graphic novel is a worthy new interpretation of Homer’s epic." —Rick Riordan, author of the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series Fresh from his triumphs in the Trojan War, Odysseus, King of Ithaca, wants nothing more than to return home to his family. Instead, he offends the sea god, Poseidon, who dooms him to years of shipwreck and wandering. Battling man-eating monsters, violent storms, and the supernatural seductions of sirens and sorceresses, Odysseus will need all his strength and cunning—and a little help from Mount Olympus—to make his way home and seize his kingdom from the schemers who seek to wed his queen and usurp his throne. Award-winning graphic artist Gareth Hinds masterfully reinterprets a story of heroism, adventure, and high action that has been told and retold for more than 2,500 years—though never quite like this.


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With bold imagery and an ear tuned to the music of Homer’s epic poem, Gareth Hinds reinterprets the ancient classic as it’s never been told before. "Gareth Hinds brings THE ODYSSEY to life in a masterful blend of art and storytelling. Vivid and exciting, this graphic novel is a worthy new interpretation of Homer’s epic." —Rick Riordan, author of the Percy Jackson & the Olymp With bold imagery and an ear tuned to the music of Homer’s epic poem, Gareth Hinds reinterprets the ancient classic as it’s never been told before. "Gareth Hinds brings THE ODYSSEY to life in a masterful blend of art and storytelling. Vivid and exciting, this graphic novel is a worthy new interpretation of Homer’s epic." —Rick Riordan, author of the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series Fresh from his triumphs in the Trojan War, Odysseus, King of Ithaca, wants nothing more than to return home to his family. Instead, he offends the sea god, Poseidon, who dooms him to years of shipwreck and wandering. Battling man-eating monsters, violent storms, and the supernatural seductions of sirens and sorceresses, Odysseus will need all his strength and cunning—and a little help from Mount Olympus—to make his way home and seize his kingdom from the schemers who seek to wed his queen and usurp his throne. Award-winning graphic artist Gareth Hinds masterfully reinterprets a story of heroism, adventure, and high action that has been told and retold for more than 2,500 years—though never quite like this.

30 review for The Odyssey: A Graphic Novel

  1. 5 out of 5

    Tatiana

    A perfect medium for a lazy reader who will never read actual The Odyssey (aka me). The only thing that left me scratching my head is this question: why is Odysseus considered a hero? He hasn't done ONE heroic, un-selfish thing in this whole saga. He was evidently a good fighter (and lover? hard to say, all women throw themselves at him for some reason), but all he ever did was either expect hospitality from various people or steal others' stuff when he wasn't offered that said hospitality. A perfect medium for a lazy reader who will never read actual The Odyssey (aka me). The only thing that left me scratching my head is this question: why is Odysseus considered a hero? He hasn't done ONE heroic, un-selfish thing in this whole saga. He was evidently a good fighter (and lover? hard to say, all women throw themselves at him for some reason), but all he ever did was either expect hospitality from various people or steal others' stuff when he wasn't offered that said hospitality.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Giselle

    What a great graphic novel to read! I can finally get some sense of what THE ODYSSEY is all about now. I enjoyed every bit of it. Even the sexist undertones where women are seductresses who keep men chained to an island, or trick them and turn them into swine.

  3. 4 out of 5

    My_Strange_Reading

    Meh. ⭐️⭐️ for the story/text ⭐️⭐️⭐️ for the illustrations I hate Odysseus. I don't really like this story, but I bought this graphic novel for my classroom to help my lower readers have a better visual aid for their reading. It does a good job of serving that purpose, but the re-write of the text was too simplified, and I just generally don't care for this story, so it wasn't going to be a high rating for me.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lindsay C-T

    Extry Extry, read all about it!! Die Hard Odyssey Purist Finds True Love In Graphic Adaptation!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    Odyssey is one of the most famous epics ever written. It's discussed, read, studied for more than 2000 years. As it's expected, it's transfered in other mediums more times than you can count. This one, in comic book form this time by Gareth Hinds, did the best it could. Art is nothing special, maybe even bad at faces and animals. But, it's always nice to see foreigners take a chance to recreate parts of Greek mythology and I sure hope Hinds enjoyed adapting and drawing the story.

  6. 5 out of 5

    James

    A warm up with a simplified retelling of this story before delving into the classic text which is soon on my reading list. Lots of details left out given the format, but the artwork is lovely and the mythology is well represented here.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Frances

    This is a solid and colorful graphic version of a very classic tale. My students love this version and I am thankful to be able to share this great story with the help of accompanying images. However, I am a little critical of the artwork at points. The art snob in me isn't completely in love but my teacher heart knows how valuable this version is to my classroom, especially for some of my most struggling readers. Thank you Gareth Hinds

  8. 5 out of 5

    BookCupid

    A poem turned novel, turned graphic book. Although I could've picked up the full novel, I tasted the plot thanks to this graphic and must say that the novel would have most likely put me to sleep. Odysseus is stranded after the Trojan war and must fight against the odds with the help of a few Gods. Meanwhile, his son is trying to find him. Both characters move along the story by constantly asking for help. It takes a couple of tries before the book becomes interesting. My advice is hang in there!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Christina Pilkington

    If you want a beautifully illustrated, graphic novel retelling Homer’s Odyssey, read this! I read this with my almost 11 year old twins, and we loved it. There were a few panels that had some partial nudity and some blood and gore, so be aware of that if you were going to show this to younger children. But for us, it really brought the poem to life and made the story memorable. It’s been a while since I last read The Odyssey (probably about 15 years now!), but it seems to be a fairly accurate re If you want a beautifully illustrated, graphic novel retelling Homer’s Odyssey, read this! I read this with my almost 11 year old twins, and we loved it. There were a few panels that had some partial nudity and some blood and gore, so be aware of that if you were going to show this to younger children. But for us, it really brought the poem to life and made the story memorable. It’s been a while since I last read The Odyssey (probably about 15 years now!), but it seems to be a fairly accurate representation of the poem. I’d highly recommend this graphic novel.

  10. 4 out of 5

    JG (Introverted Reader)

    Gareth Hinds undertakes the task of adapting The Odyssey, the tale of Odysseus's long journey home after the Trojan War, into graphic novel format. I wish this had been around when I was wading through The Odyssey in high school (and maybe college? I can't remember). I don't know what translation we read, but we needed a translation of it. I think most of us had only vague ideas about what was going on, and we probably only figured those out after the teacher spoon-fed them to us. The Odyssey is p Gareth Hinds undertakes the task of adapting The Odyssey, the tale of Odysseus's long journey home after the Trojan War, into graphic novel format. I wish this had been around when I was wading through The Odyssey in high school (and maybe college? I can't remember). I don't know what translation we read, but we needed a translation of it. I think most of us had only vague ideas about what was going on, and we probably only figured those out after the teacher spoon-fed them to us. The Odyssey is perfect for this format. It's a very visual story, with the sirens and Scylla and Charybdis, a journey to the underworld, the cyclops, and Circe's spell. I did like the illustrations, although they veered a little too close to the bulging muscles and gravity-defying breasts that most people think of when they hear the word, comic. Still, it's a manly tale, so they fit. I was a little surprised by the translation. I expected the writing to be very modern, but it's not. It's still very readable but formal at the same time. From page 4, Zeus speaking to Athena: "My child, what strange remarks you let escape your lips. Could I forget that wily hero Odysseus? You know I bear him no grudge--but Poseidon does, hates him for blinding his son Polyphemus the Cyclops. But come now, let us take up the matter of Odysseus's return. Poseidon must relent; he cannot thwart the will of all the other gods." I had forgotten much of what happens in the story, so it felt a lot like I was coming to this for the first time. I enjoyed it more in this format than I ever have before. This is a fabulous (re-)introduction to this timeless classic. Teachers, take note and have some mercy on your classes. This could at least be a companion to the "regular" novel.

  11. 5 out of 5

    C.G. Drews

    I always find mythology endlessly interesting and this is no exception! I liked this story a lot. It did take me a while to warm up. At the beginning I just wasn't really caring and all the Greek names confused me. BUT. Like I said, mythology is cool and I always learn better with pictures. I knew most of Odyssey's story vaguely, but now I feel like I have a better grasp on it. (Although I read the author's note and he said he took a lot of creative liberties, but whatever. It's all Greek to me. I always find mythology endlessly interesting and this is no exception! I liked this story a lot. It did take me a while to warm up. At the beginning I just wasn't really caring and all the Greek names confused me. BUT. Like I said, mythology is cool and I always learn better with pictures. I knew most of Odyssey's story vaguely, but now I feel like I have a better grasp on it. (Although I read the author's note and he said he took a lot of creative liberties, but whatever. It's all Greek to me.) Odyssey is a bit of an idiot though. And I kind of think he's a bit gory when he comes home and decides to just kill every idiot around. I mean, OKAY. Idiots are annoying! But killing them all would severely deplete the world's population. Chill, Oddy. Just chill. (And I hated him when he killed all those people and then made his dodgy maidservants clean it up THEN WENT AND BEHEADED THEM. Um. Jerk, much?!) And seriously, if I ever think anyone I know is dysfunctional, I am soooo totally wrong. The Greek gods make everyone else's dysfunctionality look like perfect-lives. There was one island Odyssey stopped at where a king had 12 sons and 12 daughters so....dum dum daaaa....he made them all marry each other. ERK. And all the gods don't communicate. One god banishes Odyssey. The next releases him and then goes, "Oops. Didn't know he was in time-out." Seriously, peoples communicate. It won't kill you. ANYWAY. An interesting read! I liked the art too! It was a lot more pencil-ish which was nice from the computer art graphic novels I've been reading lately.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kurt

    I have never really been interested in reading graphic novels. They just seem like a bit of a cop out -- a lazy, unimaginative substitute to real reading. But when I saw this book at my small city library I suddenly had to re-evaluate my thinking. I had attempted reading The Iliad a few years ago with high hopes of reading it and then The Odyssey shortly thereafter, but after a dozen or so pages of real difficulty I gave it up. But I really did want to learn and understand the story. So, a few ye I have never really been interested in reading graphic novels. They just seem like a bit of a cop out -- a lazy, unimaginative substitute to real reading. But when I saw this book at my small city library I suddenly had to re-evaluate my thinking. I had attempted reading The Iliad a few years ago with high hopes of reading it and then The Odyssey shortly thereafter, but after a dozen or so pages of real difficulty I gave it up. But I really did want to learn and understand the story. So, a few years later I took a chance with this version of Homer's epic poem. I am very happy I did. I understand that there is no way this graphic novel can really compare to Homer's original language or any good translation of it, but it does manage to tell this truly exciting story in a way that is easily understood and visualized. The illustrations were great. My overall opinion of graphic novels is unchanged, but in some cases, such as in the case of this one, I now believe there is a place for them. I understand that this same author has a graphic novel version of Beowulf. I will definitely be on the lookout for it also.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Petergiaquinta

    Not poorly done, but a reductionist (and fairly vapid) approach to one of the world's greatest stories that downplays some of the more interesting aspects of the original epic...though perhaps it will work as a gateway drug for younger readers. I'm obviously not six years old anymore, but Hinds' fairly innocuous version here probably would not have moved me in the same way that the much shorter summary did that I read in some ancient textbook I received as a wee lad from good old Uncle Levy. It Not poorly done, but a reductionist (and fairly vapid) approach to one of the world's greatest stories that downplays some of the more interesting aspects of the original epic...though perhaps it will work as a gateway drug for younger readers. I'm obviously not six years old anymore, but Hinds' fairly innocuous version here probably would not have moved me in the same way that the much shorter summary did that I read in some ancient textbook I received as a wee lad from good old Uncle Levy. It only had a few reproductions of some of the classic paintings inspired by Homer's text (John Flaxman's drawings I specifically can recall), but that much abridged work grabbed me in a way that Hinds' volume fails to accomplish.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer DuBose

    This gets 4 stars for the beautiful illustrations. However, the story is edited in such a way that I couldn't use it to teach hero's journey to my students. It's kind of just an illustrated summary of The Odyssey with very little dialogue. I would need to assign supplemental texts to be able to teach with this. I'll just teach Hero's Journey using Star Wars graphic novel.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Annie

    I've never read the original version of The Odyssey, but I very much enjoyed this. Loved the watercolor. It's inspiring me to seek out some more graphic novels. Anyone have any suggestions? Read this for my Journey Narratives class.

  16. 4 out of 5

    kaleigh

    2.5 stars Pretty enjoyable graphic novel. Nothing spectacular, although I did really like the artwork in it.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Gina Baik

    This graphic novel is an AMAZING book! I'd totally recommend this book for anyone. Though I felt like it was easier for me to understand because I have read the novel before. Anyway, this book is about a man called Odysseus's journey to go back to his family and his son Telemachus trying to find him. Seriously, everybody should read it.:)

  18. 5 out of 5

    Maria

    I had the best time reading this graphic novel. I could not put it down! So much fun!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Nathaniel

    My opinion of Gareth Hinds version of The Odyssey is mixed in the sense of entertainment, giving an immense bore to me but retaining my attention at the same time. Odysseus is urged to pursue an habitual onslaught of challenges in order to get to his home, the Island of Ithaca in Greece, from the Island of Ogygia. Odysseus, the king of Ithaca, husband of Penelope, and father of Telemachus, tends to lean on the beggar side of things. Granted, his current situation is quite desperate, however, he My opinion of Gareth Hinds version of The Odyssey is mixed in the sense of entertainment, giving an immense bore to me but retaining my attention at the same time. Odysseus is urged to pursue an habitual onslaught of challenges in order to get to his home, the Island of Ithaca in Greece, from the Island of Ogygia. Odysseus, the king of Ithaca, husband of Penelope, and father of Telemachus, tends to lean on the beggar side of things. Granted, his current situation is quite desperate, however, he only hops from island to island leeching off the production of other kingdoms while only giving “May the gods bless you always with health, long life, and happiness for all your children--”(81) in return. To me, he deserves no title of epic warrior, for he has done nothing truly epic in the story. Another example of incompetent leadership could be seen on pages 115-116, “Two of my men volunteered to go and see what manner of people lived there.”(115) He lets his men go rather than himself. “...But they were treated to a savage and beastly reception.”(116). The result is the death of two of his men, where he himself probably could’ve taken the beasts head on and won with all of his men. The main idea of the story is to prevail through treacherous journeys in spite of various difficulties. “Sing through me, and tell the story of his sufferings, his trails and adventures, and his bloody homecoming.” Odysseus grew from this by overcoming these challenges through time and hard work. I would recommend this book to people who like mythical stories and action mixed with adventure. As well as those who are interested in graphic novels.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Andrea Jordan

    I was very excited to read The Odyssey and even though it didn't meet all of my expectations, I still ended up enjoying it. The Odyssey was about King Odysseus travelling to several kingdoms, telling stories about his adventures while he tries to return home after being missing from his kingdom for almost 16 years. Even though I enjoyed the story, I didn't like Odysseus as a character. Throughout the entire story Odysseus never changes, he keeps his opinions and does exactly what he says he'll d I was very excited to read The Odyssey and even though it didn't meet all of my expectations, I still ended up enjoying it. The Odyssey was about King Odysseus travelling to several kingdoms, telling stories about his adventures while he tries to return home after being missing from his kingdom for almost 16 years. Even though I enjoyed the story, I didn't like Odysseus as a character. Throughout the entire story Odysseus never changes, he keeps his opinions and does exactly what he says he'll do at the beginning of the book. However, most of the books conflicts come directly from Odysseus either not doing what he's told, being too cocky, or simply not communicating like any reasonable person would. For example (spoilers), Odysseus could've prevented many of the deaths of his men by simply TELLING them WHY they shouldn't do something. In one case, Odysseus was told that once they got to a certain island, to not let any of his men eat the cows on the island or they would die. His men were dying of starvation and had NO IDEA why they shouldn't eat the cows, so they ate them. If Odysseus would've simply TOLD his men, "hey dude don't eat the cows, or you'll die" then maybe, just maybe, they wouldn't have eaten the cows. Another example of a conflict caused by Odysseus is when the ship crew found lots of lambs, food, and gold and decided to steal it. Odysseus, however, thought it would be a good idea to ask the owner of the lambs/food/gold how they got them, which eventually ended with the owner being a giant and eating 6 of his men, he should've just listened to his crew. Even though I didn't like Odysseus' character, it still is a great book and even his character flaws provide to this being a fantastic read. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who wants to read an adventure book or anyone interested in mythology.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Rebekah Gyger

    I'm not sure if I should evaluate this as I would any other graphic novel, or if I should evaluate it as a new medium interpretation of the Odyssey. Despite its having come up in classes all through high school and college, I never actually read the Odyssey. It always seemed like an extremely long tale which was told in a style I didn't enjoy. And after reading this, I still feel the same way about the actual story. Visually, Hinds' artwork is beautiful and he captures so much movement in each of I'm not sure if I should evaluate this as I would any other graphic novel, or if I should evaluate it as a new medium interpretation of the Odyssey. Despite its having come up in classes all through high school and college, I never actually read the Odyssey. It always seemed like an extremely long tale which was told in a style I didn't enjoy. And after reading this, I still feel the same way about the actual story. Visually, Hinds' artwork is beautiful and he captures so much movement in each of his images. Even those without dialogue tell so much about the characters, their motives, and their journeys. Having wanted to know the story of the Odyssey, I am glad that I able to enjoy it in this shorter and more visual manner. That said, there were issues I had with story. There were time issues that didn't make sense (Odysseus has been gone for twenty years, but toward the end there is a dog that was said to have been raised by Odysseus himself... that was still alive?) though I do not know if that was the fault of Homer or of Hinds. I also was just not a fan of Odysseus, who slept with nearly every goddess he came across despite telling them that all he wanted was to go home to his wife. For anyone wanting to glimpse the tropes and values depicted in The Odyssey, Hinds does a good job of including these, showing instances of manhood, valor, charity, and vengeance. And it is clear that the artist loves the subject material from the care he took in recreating it. I did NOT receive a copy of this for review, unlike most books that I read. My opinions are my own.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Candice M (tinylibrarian)

    The art was gorgeous but I found myself really having to push myself to finish reading it. I could see this as being used successfully in teaching a course to teens about the Odyssey and also as a gift for big fans of the story, but I can't really see teens just picking this up. (As a side note, in terms of forcing myself to finish it, I always get worked up over stories where the man gets to traipse around having adventures - including shacking up with various ladies - while the wife has to sit The art was gorgeous but I found myself really having to push myself to finish reading it. I could see this as being used successfully in teaching a course to teens about the Odyssey and also as a gift for big fans of the story, but I can't really see teens just picking this up. (As a side note, in terms of forcing myself to finish it, I always get worked up over stories where the man gets to traipse around having adventures - including shacking up with various ladies - while the wife has to sit around at home and be "loyal." I realize that it was a very different time, yadda, yadda, yadda, but seriously, what is up with that?!)

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    Bought this for grandkids -- ages 8-18 -- and ended up reading it myself before sending it to them. Brought the Odyssey story home to me. I feel adapter/artist hit the high spots and even most of the more obscure points. These pictures will make my reading THE Odyssey more meaningful although I'm not a fan of the graphic novel genre in general. Explanation of each character wasn't always explained upon first appearance, but was for the most part given later on. Loved the watercolors; the book di Bought this for grandkids -- ages 8-18 -- and ended up reading it myself before sending it to them. Brought the Odyssey story home to me. I feel adapter/artist hit the high spots and even most of the more obscure points. These pictures will make my reading THE Odyssey more meaningful although I'm not a fan of the graphic novel genre in general. Explanation of each character wasn't always explained upon first appearance, but was for the most part given later on. Loved the watercolors; the book didn't have that comic book feel. I liked the typography and the fact several of the best translations were quoted.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sesana

    As far as the text goes, it's a pretty good adaptation of The Odyssey. Hinds hit all of the highlights, and some of the less well-remembered details. The writing is easily readable, but still feels like ancient Greece, which is a nice trick. It also looks like ancient Greece, at least to me. That said, the art is not of a uniform quality throughout. Mostly, it's very good, but there are some panels that just look rushed. It's possible that I just might not be a big fan of Hinds's style.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Allison Berryhill

    I read this on Jenny Paulsen's recommendation as an entry text for teaching Fitzgerald's translation. She suggested my ninth-graders read this first, then select a book (chapter) to read in the Fitzgerald. I'm excited about how accessible this graphic novel is, and yet how true to the original it adheres. I've asked my administrator for a classroom set. Wish me luck.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Donalyn

    I love the Odyssey and have read every book variant I can find, as well as watching movie versions. Gareth Hinds proves his genius once again with this remarkable graphic novel version. A great introduction to the classic for young readers.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Benjamin Kailes

    Very good book. Short, easy, fast read that tells the tale of Odysseus faster than the long, original version. The illustration were magnificent and wish they did this more often with famous tales, and if they have, I'd rather read those!

  28. 4 out of 5

    jaden

    a great book that tells the story of Odysseus and how he survives the wrath of the greek gods. this book is easily one of my favorite greek mythology book besides the percy jackson series.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Matthew

    I didn't really like this book because it is too far fetched for me to read and i don't like these type of books. Odysseus got lost after the trojan war and had to go on a huge journey to find his way back to his main land. I am not the biggest fan of the main character because he does not listen to anyone and does something only if it benefits himself and doesn't think about others. The main character does not really change throughout the entire story he stays the same ignorant person he was at t I didn't really like this book because it is too far fetched for me to read and i don't like these type of books. Odysseus got lost after the trojan war and had to go on a huge journey to find his way back to his main land. I am not the biggest fan of the main character because he does not listen to anyone and does something only if it benefits himself and doesn't think about others. The main character does not really change throughout the entire story he stays the same ignorant person he was at the start of the story. One of the only things i liked about the main character is that he was dedicated to getting back home even though it took him around 16 years to finally get back home and some people didn't recognize him.i also like the fact that he met people and he became friends with them and they helped him get home. I didn't like that he was really stupid at some points like when he didn't tell his people to not eat the cows but he didn't say anything and they ate it anyways and some of them died. Also at the end where he was going to fight people and one person who said don't fight those people and then odysseus did not fight them. The main character in this story didn't change much if at all because he started off a ignorant person and came back an ignorant person. I would not recommend this book to people if they don't like greek mythology or far fetched books.if i were to recommend it to anyone it would have to be people who are above the age of 16.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Levi

    As a "great books" nerd and Latin teacher, I would much prefer people to experience Homer and the full text first. But, I really appreciated this interpretation, especially since I've read The Odyssey many times before. The illustrations, translation, and faithfulness to the original all make this a great graphic novel. I'm not one to read many comics or graphic novels, but I'd highly recommend this. The illustrations have some fun little foreshadowings and elements that are very appropriate for As a "great books" nerd and Latin teacher, I would much prefer people to experience Homer and the full text first. But, I really appreciated this interpretation, especially since I've read The Odyssey many times before. The illustrations, translation, and faithfulness to the original all make this a great graphic novel. I'm not one to read many comics or graphic novels, but I'd highly recommend this. The illustrations have some fun little foreshadowings and elements that are very appropriate for the text. In addition, I appreciated Gareth's willingness to work with several texts in order to find what worked best for him. Lastly, his faithfulness to Homer's original makes me happy - being a classics nerd! If you have read the original, I'd recommend this to you! If you haven't read the original, I'd still recommend this work, but I'd recommend that you read the original first.

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