Like other exemplary encyclopedia publications, each volume in this set exploring world mythology contains the entire set’s table of contents and index, making for ease of access. Also standard is a plethora of additional enrichment content such as activities and time lines. In A–Z format, the set provides more than 300 entries for five content areas: characters, deities, myths, themes, and cultures.
This five-volume set brings clarity out of confusion for the middle and high school student studying world mythology. The 300 A-to-Z entries from 40-plus cultures are grouped into five categories (character, deity, myth, theme, and culture) and come with a reader's guide that explores major themes in world mythology. Written clearly and concisely through the lens of world culture and integrating a multidisciplinary and cross-cultural view, the set has a distinct freshness and succinctness, yet it provides rubrics for comparison across entries. When shaped in the context of culture and societal norms, mythology functions as a mirror, which imitates the world from which it is derived. Therefore, topics covering values, geographic location, natural resources, technological state, and social organization shape the subjects in overarching themes congruent with a worldview. BOTTOM LINE A wonderful source serving the needs of middle or high schools whether part of a public, school, or general library collection, this work is even more comprehensive than the recently revised Facts On File Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend (see the review, p. 100) and more in-depth than UXL's two-volume Junior Worldmark Encyclopedia of World Cultures (1999)