Forced to make love to beautiful women, this is adult science fiction at its best. The Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Greece and Rome had returned to Earth - with all their awesome powers intact, and Earth was transformed almost overnight. War on any scale was outlawed, along with boom-and-bust economic cycles, and prudery - no change was more startling than the face of New York, where, for instance, the Empire State Building became the Tower of Zeus!
In this totally altered world, William Forrester was an acolyte of Athena, Goddess of Wisdom, and therefore a teacher, in this case of a totally altered history - and Maya Wilson, girl student, evidently had a totally altered way of grading in mind - but what else would a worshipper of Venus, Goddess of Love, have in mind? This was just the first of the many Trials of Forrester, every bit as mighty and perilous as the Labors of Hercules. In love with Gerda Symes, like him a devotee of Athena, like him a frequenter of the great Temple of Pallas Athena (formerly known as the 42nd Street Library) - dedicated, in short, to the pleasures of the mind - Forrester was under the soft, compelling pressure of soft, compelling devotees of Venus, Bacchus and the like, and in need of all the strength that he and his Goddess, the beautiful and intellectual Athena, could muster to save him from the endless temptations of this new Earth.And into this sensuous strife strode Temple Myrmidons - religious cops sworn to obey orders without question or hesitation - with a pickup order for William Forrester.Where he was taken, what happened to him, the truly fantastic discoveries he made about himself and the Gods and Goddesses - here are the ingredients that make up this science fiction novel of suspense, intrigue, mystery and danger. For science fiction it is, with the supernatural making complete sense, and fun too, despite the Sword of Damocles hanging by a thread over Forrester's head!
This is pure fantasy and for 1959 was a pure sex fantasy for the authors. The sex is not explicit just often and with perfect women. The Gods left man to himself and man screwed it up, so the Gods came back to take control. The star of the show is a mortal, who is picked to become a semi-god. For me it was just a little silly and I have loved a lot of books, that others call sophomoric.
Piers Anthony has a series of books, that are on a similar theme, that I recommend. ON A PALE HORSE, is a good book along with the two that follow it.
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What did you like best about this story?
The wide ranging changes brought about by the return of the classical gods, the collision of modern thinking and religious facts, the fun and confusion from all the what-if.
What about Larry Oliver’s performance did you like?
The wry sense of humor that he conveyed for certain scenes. When the protagonist was bewildered and confused by turns of events, you could almost _feel_ the character floundering and then regaining his mental feet.
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
I enjoyed listening to this in segments, like it was a serialized radio play.