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Review: Zeus is a Dick by Susie Donkin

Zeus Is A Dick by Susie Donkin

Recommended: sure
For people who love and recognize the absurdity of Greek myths, for those who want to learn about the absurdity of the Greek myths, for people who enjoy a bit of crass humor, for people who enjoy sassy banter and dick jokes

Summary

In the beginning, everything was fine.* And then along came Zeus.
*more or less

Ahh Greek myths. Those glorious tales of heroism, honour and… petty squabbles, soap-opera drama and more weird sex than Fifty Shades of Grey could shake a stick at!
It’s about time we stopped respecting myths and started laughing at them – because they’re really very weird. Did you know Aphrodite, goddess of love and beauty, was born of some discarded genitals? Or that Hera threw her own son off a mountain because he was ugly? Or that Apollo once kidnapped a boat full of people while pretending to be a dolphin?
And let’s not even get started on Zeus – king of the gods, ruler of the skies and a man who’s never heard of self-control. In fact, if there’s one thing most Greek myths have in common, it’s that all the drama could have been avoided if SOMEONE could keep it in their toga…
Horrible Histories writer Susie Donkin takes us on a hilarious romp through mythology and the many times the gods (literally) screwed everything up! Stephen Fry’s Mythos by way of Drunk History, Zeus is a Dick is perfect for those who like their myths with a heavy dollop of satire.

“It’s about time someone called him out on all this.” – Hera, Goddess of Marriage, wife of Zeus
“Worst. Father. Ever.” – Artemis, Goddess of the Hunt, daughter of Zeus
“Oh yeah, focus on him. I never did anything wrong. Nothing to see here.” – Poseidon, God of the Seas, brother of Zeus
“Just a real dick, honestly.” – Many, many people

Thoughts

I got a pretty good sense of the writing style and humor early on with this, and it’s quite consistent throughout. I was able to enjoy it, though I was just shy of it being A Bit Much for me. I think some people would be turned off by it, and maybe not right away, but after multiple chapters it could get tiring. There was so much else I enjoyed that it wasn’t an issue for me, thankfully. To be aware, though, it’s very much catchy slang phrases you might hear from ages 12-32 year olds (at time of writing, anyway). So there’s a lot of cussing and “AF” and pop culture references and the like. If that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, this miiiight not work for you. I encourage you to give it a try though!

I had a lot of fun with this one. After making my way through Mythos: The Greek Myths Retold, some of these stories were familiar. Many more were not. Either way, I enjoyed all of them! The ones I knew had a salty take to them that gave me even more cackles. For a comparison, Mythos is a sort of dry humor that states facts in a way that lets the reader make their own conclusion — but are heavily steered toward seeing how ridiculous the characters are because of the absurdity of the facts. In this one, it’s VERY MUCH giving you a take on each scenario and expecting you’ll probably agree — again, because of the absurdity of the facts.

The overall track of the story progresses from the start of mythology, with the intial creators, and follows them down the family tree as they self-reproduce, have babies with their immediate relations, and transform into animals and inanimate objects to impregnate unsuspecting (and unwilling…) beings. Oh yeah — if you weren’t aware of that, there’s a ton of incest and cheating and rape in these stories. They’re definitely not clean and nice. Did I forget the murder? Also murder and vengeance. Big motivator for these gods, vengeance is.

So we get a WHOLE LOT of our titular Zeus, but there’s actually a lot of all the other cast as well because there’s enough dickery to go around in these tales. It brought a much-needed contrast to some of the ones who are generally portrayed well, like Artemis or Hermes, and made them that much more interesting for their flaws. Zeus tends to be involved in most things because he’s usually either an immediate relative of someone and/or trying to bang them (and let me tell ya, that “and/or” is often and). The variety is there, though, and it all progresses pretty smoothly to transition between them all and find the connections.

Overall, I recommend this one! If you like Greek myths and cheeky, vulgar humor, this is probably an ace combo for you. The issue I had was with the humor getting a little stale at times, but overall it’s a great addition to the world of Greek mythology!

Author:

Reader, traveler, photographer, and always looking to learn!

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