Have you read this book?
Oars of Olympus by Christopher Mac Lairn is a fantasy novel set in mythological Greece. The author mixes history and facts, but this is more like Clash of the Titans than 300, which–in case you were wondering–is a good thing.
Falkron is a Celt who is exploring the Mediterranean in an age of Gods and monsters. He vaguely follows Theseus path, but in this world, Theseus existed and had already experienced his adventures. Like Theseus, Falkron has Poseidon as a patron. Early in the novel, Hades challenges Poseidon to a game and Poseidon choses Falkron as his hero. This means Falkron is going to be heading into trouble and facing everything Hades can throw his way in order to win the game with his brother.
I enjoyed how the author keeps things true to the older Greek myths and is not afraid to make the monsters fantastic as well as powerful. Falkron is a likable hero and he really is a hero. His exploits would only have been topped by Hercules and Odysseus if he went up against the heroes of the Greek Mythos.
Downsides of this one includes the down times in the novel. At times it seemed like some game master showing off the city he made. “You know there is a library, you want to go check it out?” A book has to be spot on for me to care enough to explore a city in such detail.
Things got repetitive with how awesome Falkron is. Falkrom has sex with the prettiest prostitute. Falkron beat the big guy in wrestling. Falkron can hold his breath for six minutes while he fights a giant squid. Also, although some of the fights were inspired, there was no real plot. Falkron just travels around some and weird things happen. If he stays in the same place, weird things happen. The end of the book is one last battle that really is no different than his first battle. There were also some cheeky parts, which if you are a huge writer you could get away with, but I don’t think we are there yet.
As stated, this book regains a lot of its credit by doing its best to recreate its own version of a traditional Greek Myth. In this respect, it does a good job. If he just had a back story and a climax, it could have really shined..