For the Most Beautiful by Emily Hauser – Book Review

Title: For the Most Beautiful

Series: Golden Apple Trilogy #1

Author: Emily Hauser

Genre: Greek Mythology Retelling, Fantasy

Blurb from Goodreads

Three thousand years ago a war took place that gave birth to legends – to Achilles, the greatest of the Greeks, and Hector, prince of Troy. It was a war that made – and destroyed – both men, a war that shook the very foundations of the world. But what if there was more to this epic conflict? What if there was another, hidden tale of the Trojan War that had yet to be told?

Now is that time – time for the women of Troy to tell their story.

Thrillingly imagined and startlingly original, For the Most Beautiful reveals the true story of Troy for the first time. The story of Krisayis, daughter of the Trojans’ High Priest, and of Briseis, princess of Pedasus, who fight to determine the fate of a city and its people in this ancient time of mischievous gods and mythic heroes.

In a novel full of passion and revenge, loyalty and betrayal, bravery and sacrifice, Emily Hauser breathes exhilarating new life into one of the greatest legends of all – in a story that has waited millennia to be told.

My Review

I’m a huge lover of all things Greek mythology having been first introduced to it in my local library as a little girl. I borrowed absolutely every single book I could find in the children’s section that even made the barest of mentions of Ancient Greece and the gods they worshipped.

And that love has continued on throughout my whole adult life. When Greek retelling became in vogue it was like all my Christmases had come at once. So I’ve slowly been getting my hands on all things “Greek” from my library.

I was very excited when I came across “For the Most Beautiful” in my library. That cover alone… *chef’s kiss* so I happily took it home with me.

Then I started to read it and ooof did those happy vibes disappear in a hurry!!!

This book simply pales in comparison to all of the other Trojan War retellings that are out there and shouldn’t even be mentioned in the same breath as recent works by Natalie Haynes, Pat Barker, and Madeline Miller.

It lacked any sort of gravitas or depth. Instead it felt like a subpar school essay written about the events surrounding the Trojan War.

When I tell you I hated it, I REALLY hated it.

The character of Briseis, that fabulous woman who stands up to Achilles…. Oh gosh the things this author did to her. I wanted to slap her so so much. And the character of Krisayis as she’s known in this book (Chryseis to the rest of us) wasn’t much better.

Ugh no.

It was all so horribly cheesy and cringeworthy. And to add insult to injury the ending was absolutely terrible. I mean we all know how the story of the Trojan War ends but this ended with such an underwhelming whimper.

And oh my gosh as for the scenes with the Greek gods fighting and talking among themselves…. They were awful.

SO BORING!!!

I mean how????

WHY???

Greek gods are normally such a lol!!! Because they’re basically soap characters on steroids who at times are quasi-benevolent and others are straight-up malevolent which typically makes for fantastic dialogue and overall narrative.

BUT HERE THEY HAD NO PERSONALITIES AT ALL….

And don’t even get me started on how Achilles and Patroclus were written….

I am somewhat curious to read the second book in this series because it’s not about the Trojan War so maybe I’ll prefer that as the Trojan War reeeeeeally is overdone at this stage… but I’m not sure I could sit through such poor writing again!

If you’re looking to read stories about the Trojan War skip this and go straight to The Song of Achilles or A Thousand Ships or The Silence of the Girls. You’ll thank me later.

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