I'm just feeling gabby because not many are around on the weekend & your post looked lonelyTeresa in TX wrote:Dd starts reading this at the beginning of week 20, and we just finished week 18. I'm trying to get a jump-start for myself. I have read children's versions of this and portions of it (but not all) in high school, and am wanting to either read ahead of her (best choice) or along with her and try to get my mind around it. It's daunting to me for some reason. I have read the sparknotes on book 1 of the Iliad and do realize that this particular version is the easiest to read, but as someone with some issues with ADD herself, I have a hard time following fully. It is understandable but sometimes confusing?? Also, our library has the audio version of this but not THIS audio version. I can't remember off-hand which one it is. I do like the questions that go along with it and the daily writing that is done. I guess I'm just wanting us to get as much out of it as we can and am wanting either a heads up on a good way to get in there or an encouraging word that I may be making a mountain out of a mole hill. Thoughts?
It sounds like you're doing a great job of jumping ahead of the game. With the Sparknotes summaries, did you also look at the character list and the main themes/recurrent symbols? I find those details generally the most helpful when I'm tutoring kids in literature.
The audio is also a great idea. Even if you don't remember every detail, I would think you'll pick up a general sense of the story when told by a good narrator via the audiobook?
As you listen, you could use whatever methods help you remember what you hear -- notes, highlighters, character cheat sheet, etc.
One thing I'm thinking is that the Iliad is easier to understand if you know some of the Aeneid. My memory is a little hazy, but aren't some of the most famous parts of the Trojan War (the Trojan Horse, for instance), left out of the Iliad? I wonder if reading a summary of the related topics in the Aeneid, or one of the summaries that combines both the Aeneid and the Iliad, would help wrap your brain around it? (Just a summary, since reading too much of the Aeneid would likely get you even more confused.) Or maybe you already got that info in the children's version you read (such as the Children's Homer)?
I haven't read it all myself yet, but I would think that totally absorbing it might take years. Hopefully you will get a solid understanding of the book even if you can't follow every detail.
I'll be in your position next year, so looking forward to reading other replies. And remember to share how it goes once you get thru it!