Review by James Minahan, author of Stateless Nations and Miniature Empires
Of Wisdom and War
This moving, warm, and wise novel is told from the feminine view, yet it is not a feminist novel. Of Wisdom is for everyone, a humanist novel about the effects of war on women. It is about the connection between wives and husbands, children and parents, lovers and friends. Of Wisdom takes us into the hearts and minds of some truly remarkable and unforgettable people, so real that I almost forgot that they were fictional ó clearly, true stories formed the basis of the novel.
The extensive research authenticates Of Wisdom, making it a beautifully detailed saga that shifts effortlessly back and forth in time and setting. The characters are understanding of the cycles of Greek life and culture, ably demonstrating Egliís acute observations of the human spirit, how it behaves in war and peace, in sorrow and happiness, and in complex relationships that survive overwhelming obstacles.
Egliís characters also are well-drawn, engrossing ó real people. The atmosphere and menace of war-time Greece are brought to vivid life as backdrop to this gripping tale. Rich, dark, atmospheric, Echoes from a Grecian Urn captures time and place perfectly, and deals confidently with characters, plots, and subplots fascinating and engaging in their own right. Readers cannot fail to be delighted by this compelling, folkloric novel that Ida Rae Egli has created.