The Iliad Books 4 and 5 – a reaction

A blog response to Books 4 and 5 of The Iliad by Homer for Literature class.

Books 4 and 5 of the Iliad were honestly pretty boring for me. But it was not as boring as Book 2, which in my opinion is the most boring part of the book. Unlike Book 2, Books 4 and 5 had highlights of their own (which were actually worth the time spent reading). A short summary of Book 4—it started off with the gods arguing because Zeus said that Menelaos had won and the deal that he and Alexandros made should be followed. However, Hera disagreed and wanted the war to go on. Athena then talked to Pandaros, a Trojan, to shoot an arrow at Menelaos. Pandaros followed and the truce was broken. In this Book, Agammemnon also encourages his army but he does so by insulting each one of them. In Book 5, Diomedes when on a killing spree and killed plenty of Trojans, some of them even champions. Aphrodite rescues her son Aineias and in the process she got wounded.

These two books were very dragging. They were not bad reads but it got really very dragging quite a number of times. I know that the Iliad is about war but I still am not able to appreciate actually reading about war. As I was reading these two Books, in fairness, it was nice because I got to imagine in my head how for example Diomedes was in a rage killing everyone in his path, or how Pandaros shot Menalaos with his bow and arrow but I just do not appreciate it. It gets enjoyable when I am able to read it but at the same time I find it boring to read because for me it keeps going on and on and on. The war is happening, people fight, people die, people kill other people, but what should I expect, the whole book is about war. At this point, I believe that the best way for me to appreciate the Iliad is through a movie because at least in that way, it would not be dragging. I mean I would see scenes in the movie that I would remember describing as dragging when I was still reading the book but at least it is in action so I would be able to follow it better.


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