I’ve shared on my blog before how much I love the Webtoon comic Lore Olympus by Rachel Smythe. Recently, Lore Olympus Volume 1 was published in a hardcover graphic novel format. Revisiting the early chapters of one of my favorite comics was such a pleasure and I am glad to own this gorgeous copy.

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The summary, from Amazon:

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Scandalous gossip, wild parties, and forbidden love—witness what the gods do after dark in this stylish and contemporary reimagining ofone of the best-known stories in Greek mythologyfrom creator Rachel Smythe.

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY NPR • “What Scott Pilgrim did for Canadian slackers, Lore Olympus does for the Greek pantheon, while being so beautiful that you know Aphrodite is just staring daggers in its direction.”—Kieron Gillen, co-creator of The Wicked + The Divine

Persephone, young goddess of spring, is new to Olympus. Her mother, Demeter, has raised her in the mortal realm, but after Persephone promises to train as a sacred virgin, she’s allowed to live in the fast-moving, glamorous world of the gods. When her roommate, Artemis, takes her to a party, her entire life changes: she ends up meeting Hades and feels an immediate spark with the charming yet misunderstood ruler of the Underworld. Now Persephone must navigate the confusing politics and relationships that rule Olympus, while also figuring out her own place—and her own power.

This full-color edition of Smythe’s original Eisner-nominated webcomic Lore Olympus features a brand-new, exclusive short story, and brings Greek mythology into the modern age in a sharply perceptive and romantic graphic novel.

This volume collects episodes 1–25 of the #1 WEBTOON comic Lore Olympus.

Buy Lore Olympus Volume 1 here.
You can also preorder Volume 2.

Lore Olympus is a semi-modern spin on traditional Greek mythology, specifically the story of Persephone and Hades. Smythe does take some liberties and makes some changes, which I have seen some critics get annoyed by, but they genuinely all make sense for the story as she tells it, and for putting a modern, empowering spin on a story that involves sexual assault. As someone who was sexually assaulted, Smythe’s portrayal of how Persephone experiences the situation was so relatable and movingly done. (For those unfamiliar with the original tale or modern takes on it, I do want to note that Hades is not the rapist in this story.)
The colors in this graphic novel are vibrant and fun, though I do think it did translate a little better in the mobile comic format. Nonetheless, owning a physical copy was important to me and I’m glad to have this beauty on my bookshelf. The characters are all memorable and crafted in a way that is reminiscent of the original Greek tales while still having their own spin to them. Overall, this remains my favorite webcomic in recent years, and I can’t wait to get my hand on Lore Olympus Volume 2. In the meantime, I’ll be sure to buy tickets to fastpass my way to more and more episodes on the Webtoon app! I can’t wait for the current hiatus to be over.

Find out more about how I rate books here.

Lore Olympus: Volume One (Lore Olympus, #1)Lore Olympus: Volume One by Rachel Smythe
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

So, so happy to own this in print. Lore Olympus means so much to me. I know some mythology fans don’t enjoy the divergences Rachel takes but if you can look past those, this is such a lovely work. There’s a ton of joy, and as a victim of SA I have never seen my experience so closely and thoughtfully represented.

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Book Club Questions

  1. How is Lore Olympus different from and similar to the original Greek myths?
  2. Who is your favorite character? Why?
  3. Who are the villains in this story?
  4. Is Artemis a good friend to Persephone?
  5. Describe the relationship dynamic between Hades and Persephone.
  6. Describe the dynamics between Hades and his brothers.

Interested? Buy Lore Olympus Volume 1.
And don’t forget to add me as a friend on Goodreads!

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