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Gilgamesh the Hero

Ages 11-15
Full-color and b&w illustrations
Lexile: 780L
HARDCOVER; Published: 6/20/2003
ISBN: 978-0-8028-5262-5
Price: $ 20.00
96 Pages
Trim Size, in inches: 7.5 x 10
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This is one of the oldest stories in the world, and it's about things that still matter to us today: friendship, fame, courage, happiness.

Gilgamesh and Enkidu are friends -- best friends. Together they can work wonders, fight monsters, brave earthquakes, travel the world! But waiting in the dark is the one enemy they can never overcome.

Retold by award- winning author Geraldine McCaughrean, and illustrated with great power by David Parkins, Gilgamesh the Hero is a story that will linger in the imagination long after the book has been put down.

Pennsylvania School Librarians Association,
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"McCaughrean turns in a robust, exciting rendition of the world's oldest written epic. . . The most riveting retelling yet of this ancient, ageless tale."
Horn Book
"Clearly a telling for our time, but one that honors its source. Parkins captures the epic's primitive power and universal emotions in rough, broadly rendered portraits."
"McCaughrean employs her supple style in this version of the oldest recorded story in the world. . . Parkins' muscular images, inspired by Assyrian art and reminiscent of Leonard Fisher's art, are a fine foil for the text, which begs to be read aloud."
Children's Literature
"This allegory is skillfully, beautifully retold by the incomparable Ms. McCaughrean, who has won every major prize for children's literature in Great Britain."
Chicago Tribune
"The power [McCaughrean] generates here is striking, taking its source in the complexity of character she gives to ancient King Gilgamesh and his friend Enkidu. . . [Gilgamesh's] quest for the 'secret of immortality' becomes a believable journey through grief, and McCaughrean makes us weep and cry with Gilgamesh, with life."
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"This has the vivid language and dialogue of an effective chapter-by-chapter readaloud. The retelling downplays the overt sexuality and bloody extremes of various translations but maintains the powerful sweep of traditional epic literature in a cohesive narrative with strong chronological momentum that drives the hero through his own story."
Washington Post Book World
"The world's oldest recorded story . . . is here beautifully, if very freely, retold by a distinguished British children's author. . . .David Parkins's muscular woodcuts help breathe life into the tale of the passionate god-king who went in search of immortality."
School Library Journal, (starred review)
"McCaughrean's retelling is superb. Faithful to the fragmentary originals, her adaptation adds inspired details, similes, dialogue, and description. It enriches readers' understanding without violating the source. . . .Her language is both vernacular and classic, her pace unslacking, her characterizations deft. This volume will add luster to the author's glittering reputation."