Review of 'Ilium'

Ilium by Dan Simmons

Not having read the Iliad I was prepared to be a bit in the dark when reading Ilium but I was pleasantly suprised. I found the story very interesting and easy to follow in true Dan Simmons style. In Troy (Ilium) the story of the Iliad is being played out observed by Hockenberry, a “scolic”, a Homer scholar from the twentieth century and at the mercy of the gods, who watch over everything to ensure the battle follows the story of the Iliad. The battle for Troy is vividly described with amusing descrepencies between Homer's romantic version and the reality reported by Hockenberry. The battle is starting to deviate in unexpected ways. Is this really Troy after all? Meanwhile, on earth a few post-humans are finding out the truth of their soft existance and seek answers long ago forgotten. Who or what really are the voynix? What really happens to people when they are faxed to the rings when they are 100 years old? On another storyline, two moravecs, Mahnmut and Orphu are sent to Mars to investigate unusual Quantum disturbances and plant a mysterious device at its heart. Their expedition gets into trouble when they are attacked by a man flying in a chariot when they enter into Mars' atmosphere. What is the device they are meant to deliver? What is really happening on Mars? This book is a real page-turner with believable characters and a fascinating story making one wonder how it will be resolved. This the first book of several so don't expect a final conclusion to all the questions posed here. Simmons has once again delivered a story of vast depth and believability in master storyteller style.

Rating: “Nearly perfect, but not quite”

Review Date: 2004-11-15

Genre: Science Fiction

Publisher: Gollancz

Publication Date: 2003

Other reviewed books by Dan Simmons: