Saturday, August 30, 2014

Review: HADES SPEAKS! A Guide to the Underworld by the Greek God of the Dead by Vicky Alvear Shecter

Hades, god of the dead, welcomes readers on a dangerous tour o his underworld kingdom, filled with monsters, furies, giants, and vampire demons. Along the way, he reeals ancient death rites and sinister curses, tells hair-raising stories, and cracks jokes to die for. With his witty voice an dghoulish sense of humor, Hades is the perfect guide throught his fresh and imaginative work of nonfiction that reads like a novel. Includes a glossary, bibliography, and index.
After reading the Percy Jackson books, I became more interested in Greek mythology.

In HADES SPEAKS! A Guide to the Underworld by the Greek God of the Dead, readers are taken on a tour of the underworld by Hades. Along the way, he tells the reader stories about various gods, goddesses, heroes, mortals and creatures. Persephone also narrates a few pages worth of stories.

I liked the idea of Hades leading the reader on a guided tour of his realm. This way, readers can learn a lot about mythology and there's a semblance of order of the materials. However, aside from that, there's no real plot here. Of course, creating a plot would have been a challenge for this kind of book, so maybe it was for the best.

Hades tries to be humorous and he asks questions of the reader and replies as if you answered him. I wasn't familiar with some of the stories included in the book, which is great because I learned a lot of new things. For example, I didn't know that there was a Greek myth about the origin of mint.

The last part of the book contains a glossary and a guide to ancient gods and heroes, which you can refer to whenever you need to remember which one a particular god or hero was.

The only thing I wasn't fond of was the illustration style. I found the drawings a tad too creepy for my taste. It fits the story, but it won't be everyone's cup of tea.

Thanks to NetGalley and Boyds Mill Press for the e-ARC. Publication date of HADES SPEAKS! A Guide to the Underworld by the Greek God of the Dead is on September 1, 2014.


  1. You'll learn a lot of new things.
  2. The stories have a structure.
  3. The stories are well-researched. 


  1. The illustrations may be too creepy for some kids. 

So now I have a screech owl for a gardener. Yeah, thanks, Persephone. 

  1. You want to know more Greek myths.
  2. You like stories that have something new.
  3. You like the Percy Jackson books. 



Note: This post contains Amazon and Book Depository affiliate links.

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