Okay, everybody. I’m going to try to remain calm. I’ve only just spent the past two months tackling one of the most famous texts in the history of Western civilisation. Because I’m just cool like that.
Honestly, I’m still a little amazed that I’ve finished. When you’ve been reading a book for more than a month, you begin to shudder at the sight of its oh-so-familiar cover, taunting you with your laziness. It almost seems to take on a life of its own, glaring at you from across the room. My copy of the Iliad spent most of April giving me significant looks and asking, ‘are you really going to re-read your favourite Terry Pratchett novel for the upteenth time, instead of reading me?’*
I just want to stress, people, that I do not usually feel like my books are alive. Or that they speak to me. Apart from in the perfectly healthy way that their authors originally intended them to. But the Iliad came close to breaking me.
The Iliad begins with what might very well be the most epic hissy fit in all of history.