starlady: A woman in a sepia photograph wearing a military uniform (fight like a girl)
Beutner, Katherine. Alcestis. New York: Soho Press, 2010.

I was inspired to read this book by [personal profile] coffeeandink, whose enthusiastic review made me quite interested in it. Alcestis is a gorgeous book, undoubtedly, and I salute Beutner for her vision and her achievement both as a classicist and as a woman. But I still liked Jo Graham's Black Ships (see M and I trade our reviews of that book in this thread) better.

There's another book that does similar things to Beutner and Graham, namely Barry Unsworth's The Songs of the Kings, that I also really like; Unsworth's book deals with the sacrifice of Iphigeneia by her father Agamemnon to bring the Achaian fleet to Troy, and at some point while reading Beutner's book I realized that the idea of a father sacrificing his daughter on the altar like a calf was perhaps a little less shocking to the ancient Greeks than we might find it today, since in ancient Greek society women were little better than chattel anyway; Beutner's book brings the reality of that to grinding, choking life. I wanted to be a good wife.  )