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Lavinia

Ursula K. Le Guin’s elegant and eloquent novel gives a voice to Lavinia, the silent young betrothed of Aeneas in Virgil’s epic poem The Aeneid. The first two-thirds of Lavinia retells the familiar story from the perspective of a clear-eyed young woman who observes the legendary battles from a distance, defies her manipulative mother to marry an outsider, and gradually develops a profound understanding of politics and leadership. The book lacks the dazzling originality of Le Guin’s science fiction, but she makes the material her own when she eventually pushes the action beyond the scope of the Latin classic. B+

Lavinia
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