Press Release

This Summer's Must Read

(ARA) — You've seen the ads for this summer's blockbuster movies — "if you only see one movie this summer, make it this one." Well, if you only pack one book in your beach bag this year, make it this one: Vergil's Aeneid.

Doesn't strike you as summer reading? Think again. A new vivid novelistic translation by G. B. Cobbold, published by Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, makes this classic more relevant than ever.

One of the pillars of Western literary tradition, the Aeneid is also a terrific read: the story of a man whose city is destroyed in war, and of his journey to find his place in destiny. This epic has it all: adventures on the high seas, passion, battles, monsters, magic, meddling gods and struggles that test the moral fiber of both men and women.

"This book is an exciting read," says Marie Bolchazy, a co-owner of the company. "And with this translation, the Aeneid is available to all readers. You can pick it up, enjoy it and marvel at its status as one of the premier works of literature in Western culture."

"Vergil's gift to our times, as to others, is to teach us a way to see a world in turmoil, to hold many visions of it simultaneously, excruciatingly, all in absolute conflict with each other, and all of them true," says Stephanie Quinn, editor of Why Vergil?, a collection of interpretations of the classic work.

The new translation published by Bolchazy-Carducci makes the work approachable and not at all intimidating. It includes an introduction to the Aeneid and Vergil, sidebar summaries, dynamic in-text illustrations, a book-by-book outline of the plot, a map of Aeneas' voyage after surviving the burning of Troy, a glossary of characters with pronunciation guide, a timeline of significant events in Roman history and other aids that help the reader enjoy the story.

And lest you think the Aeneid has no application in real life, listen to what Penn State football coach Joe Paterno has to say in his book By the Book, talking about how he was introduced to Vergil in his senior year and the impact it had on his life: "So Vergil, and his hero Aeneas, the founder of Rome, entered my life. They helped shape everything I have since become. I don't think anybody can get a handle on what makes me tick as a person, and certainly can't get at the roots of how I coach football, without understanding what I learned from the deep relationship I formed with Vergil during those afternoons and later in my life."

"Many people, like me, probably have not-so-fond memories of reading the Aeneid in high school or college," says Bolchazy. "Older translations, especially those that tried to keep the poetic meter, were often hard to read through and many times not very clear as to what was going on in the story."

Cobbold's translation brings the story to life and is written in a style with which modern readers can identify with. Cobbold is the author of Rome: Empire without End and Hellas. He holds a BA and MA from Cambridge University and has taught in various secondary schools in the United Kingdom and the United States. He is currently assistant headmaster and chair of the Classics Department at Tabor Academy in Marion, Mass.

And about translating Vergil's Aeneid, he comments: "For so long I had taught and read bits and pieces of the Aeneid, and never thought of it as a whole. The longer I worked on this translation the more intriguing it became: first, as a story that moves with increasing speed towards its surprising crisis; and then as a series of interlocking psychological studies. The characters are never completely virtuous nor completely wicked — and that is what makes them still so real, and still so modern."

So if you're looking for a book that has it all — murder, monsters and sizzling passion, and an epic that is a foundation of Western culture, make sure you pack the Aeneid this summer.

Book can be purchased at Barnes & Noble, Borders, or directly from the publisher. For more information, visit

Courtesy of ARA Content

Editor's Note: For a review copy of this book, contact