Walls of Troy by Ryan Schoon

"Walls of Troy" asks the question of what it means to be heroic in modern times. Complex stories within stories unravel the characters' internal lives.

Griffith, a student trapped deeply within himself, must come to terms with his misconceptions about his mentor, his lover, and his own misanthropic worldview.
Renee, Griffith's lover and a single-mom, must dig deep into herself to come to terms with her ex-husband's, Scott's, manipulations and find a place for a man she hates in the life of their daughter.
Sophia, pregnant with Scott's child, must probe the dark history of her long-estranged, deceased father to test the motivations behind a professor's strange offer to support her and her child if she will give up all connections to Troy, the university town of her birth, even as that professor, Eugene, sorts through his oldest, most damaging secrets of his life.
In the final chapters, we meet the villain himself, Scott, and must challenge our own beliefs about what it means to be a father, lover, and spouse. Filled with gritting detail and humor, "Walls at Troy" creates a complex narrative that will captivate readers as they, and the author, explore the toll the walls we erect within ourselves will invariably exact.

  • Classification: Adult
  • Work is: Fully available on Authonomy
  • First submitted Dec. 30, 2010
  • Last updated Dec. 30, 2010
Walls of Troy
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  • On 3 bookshelves
  • 29 comments
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  • Kestrelraptorial's avatar
    Kestrelraptorial wrote 1 year, 10 months ago

    Wow . . . it was real sad when Amber thought her mother was going to die of a broken heart. That was a very real six-year-old’s understanding. This story is Sophia trying to understand the lessons from her father, even as he says he’s not all she sees him as, and her husband’s manipulations she’s trying to break from. I can hear a fatigue in her voice, and more hopes for her daughter than for herself.

  • Walden Carrington's avatar
    Walden Carrington wrote 3 years, 6 months ago
    Ryan, You have an interesting cast of characters in Walls of Troy. I read the part about Renee in the Prelude and was mesmerized by how you convey her psychological state to the reader. I felt great sympathy for her and wondered what had happened to put her into such a disturbed state of mind. It was harrowing and thought-provoking. Writing about people with disturbed psychologies is a special challenge. The reader who wants to vicariously experience things in a ...
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  • Helianthus's avatar
    Helianthus wrote 3 years, 7 months ago
    We are rarely the men and women we think we are supposed to be. There are very wonderful moments in here and some poetic use of language. These people feel very real. (There are also a number of rather peculiar spellings throughout, which I think have already been touched upon.) Odd spellings aside, it's worth reading all the way through. My favorite parts are hard to isolate, as this is a circular work with unusual layering. I really liked the ...
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  • Retired user
    jjmonaghan [Retired] wrote 3 years, 11 months ago
    Ryan… I read Walls Of Troy with glee - a grin all over my face, from the opening paragraph onwards. This is quite simply an amazing opening. The opening sequence of the prelude - Renee’s - is a joy to read - and in places, absolutely stunning. You open Renee up and expose her to the reader in ways so vivid, that some might find it embarrassing, but even they won’t deny what a talent you have for descriptive character ...
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  • ryanschoon's avatar
    ryanschoon Author wrote 3 years, 11 months ago
    [QUOTE] Ryan, I started reading your Opus and thought I would give you my cent and half: The jewel of the narrative is the lyricism you throw throughout. The methodical, dedicated description of place and body language whose intent is to create atmosphere and evoke emotion. Thus the reader is thrown into a world where time seems to stop and we witness the delicate emotional map of your central characters emerge ..... one line a time, the pauses and the ...
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  • ryanschoon's avatar
    ryanschoon Author wrote 3 years, 11 months ago
    [QUOTE] Read chapter 2 (3 on here) and am beginning to get a sense of how this all hangs together. There's no faulting the structure of this chapter. I like the way a character arrives at the end of one scene as a lever to the next. You have two really strong male characters - Eugene is a giant, and Renee's father is a real working class hero. The family dynamics between he and Renee and Amber are totally believable ...
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  • Retired user
    Primrose Hill [Retired] wrote 3 years, 11 months ago
    Read chapter 2 (3 on here) and am beginning to get a sense of how this all hangs together. There's no faulting the structure of this chapter. I like the way a character arrives at the end of one scene as a lever to the next. You have two really strong male characters - Eugene is a giant, and Renee's father is a real working class hero. The family dynamics between he and Renee and Amber are totally believable and ...
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  • Retired user
    Primrose Hill [Retired] wrote 3 years, 11 months ago
    Hi Ryan, Yesterday, I didn't comment on the prelude, because you seemed to have an excellent review and analysis from Winston, and partly because I'm not a fan of prologues or preludes, preferring to begin at the real beginning. So, chapter one. i was totally engrossed from the off. I loved the characterisation of Troy, the town as character (as in Durrell) the separation of Town and Gown, as evidenced by the buildings. The Block and Da Bloch. it reminded ...
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  • curiousturtle's avatar
    curiousturtle wrote 3 years, 12 months ago
    Ryan, I started reading your Opus and thought I would give you my cent and half: The jewel of the narrative is the lyricism you throw throughout. The methodical, dedicated description of place and body language whose intent is to create atmosphere and evoke emotion. Thus the reader is thrown into a world where time seems to stop and we witness the delicate emotional map of your central characters emerge ..... one line a time, the pauses and the wishes.... ...
    Read more
  • Bradley Wind's avatar
    Bradley Wind wrote 4 years ago
    WALLS OF TROY COVER: its okay...works for Authonomy but after reading some I dont' think it does the book justice. Let me know if I can help out. http://www.authonomy.com/forums/threads/51100/free-book-cover-/ TITLE: hm, I immediately thought Historical Fiction....so I don't know. It's fine I suppose but doesn't really...grab me. sorry! SHORT PITCH: Too dry! I want the hollywood pull...I want a brief magnetic glimpse that makes me want to read the Long pitch and then the text! yours makes me think...this is ...
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  • katie78's avatar
    katie78 wrote 4 years ago
    the opening is strong but i felt like it went on too long and got repetitive. it's a very melodramatic sstart when we don't yet know enough about the character or what she's going through to feel connected to her pain. is there a pov change in the 2nd paragraph? who is 'me'? try- she would not admit that salted taste was what it was. you don't need to say 'tears' here. we get it. the last line in this ...
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  • Bradley Wind's avatar
    Bradley Wind wrote 4 years ago
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  • Dedalus's avatar
    Dedalus wrote 4 years ago
    Ryan Schoon, Your adept use of language allows you to dwell on a single moment for almost eternity without losing the reader. Without much dialogue you create your characters very well and present to us three dimensional and complicated people. The inherit vices of human nature as well as the virtues are shown with a delicate touch and we find ourselves at times both empathising and trying to distance ourselves from the characters. It really is quite thrilling. On a ...
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  • ryanschoon's avatar
    ryanschoon Author wrote 4 years ago
    [QUOTE] Your story opens at an appropriate moment, a young woman dousing her face with cold water, which marks the disruption of a hypnotically traumatic event that preceded the first line. At the end of chapter one I still don't know what has happened to Renee, but I gather from the language used to illustrate her thoughts that it was rape or a beating (or both). I gather from Chapter One and from your pitch that Scott, the ex-husband, has ...
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  • ryanschoon's avatar
    ryanschoon Author wrote 4 years ago
    [QUOTE] A slow, but poetic start. It’s distinctive and at times quite unusual in style with its mixed tenses and apparently random references to “me”. I assume these are intentional? I noted some typos in the opening paragraphs of the Prelude: “shame marriage” – do you mean sham? “she could not recall know” – should be “now” “terrible breathes” – should be “breaths” “her breathe” – should be breath and there are others. In chapter 1, the book within a ...
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  • Winston Chad Emerson's avatar
    Winston Chad Emerson wrote 4 years ago
    Your story opens at an appropriate moment, a young woman dousing her face with cold water, which marks the disruption of a hypnotically traumatic event that preceded the first line. At the end of chapter one I still don't know what has happened to Renee, but I gather from the language used to illustrate her thoughts that it was rape or a beating (or both). I gather from Chapter One and from your pitch that Scott, the ex-husband, has paid ...
    Read more
  • J.S.Watts's avatar
    J.S.Watts wrote 4 years, 1 month ago
    A slow, but poetic start. It’s distinctive and at times quite unusual in style with its mixed tenses and apparently random references to “me”. I assume these are intentional? I noted some typos in the opening paragraphs of the Prelude: “shame marriage” – do you mean sham? “she could not recall know” – should be “now” “terrible breathes” – should be “breaths” “her breathe” – should be breath and there are others. In chapter 1, the book within a book ...
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  • Ellie S Lee's avatar
    Ellie S Lee wrote 4 years, 1 month ago
    I admire your courage; the changes you have made are fascinating, brave and immediately engaging. It must be difficult to rewrite to the extent that you have, to reject whole swathes of well loved and thought out passages but I do feel that you will attract and retain more readers with your revised version. The Prelude immerses us straight into the characters and story with the (very necessary) explanations and background introduced once we are already hooked. I guess that ...
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  • Elwood P's avatar
    Elwood P wrote 4 years, 1 month ago
    I read about this on a forum thread and was glad I decided to have a look. I agree almost entirely with the previous review. This is really clever writing and I love how messed up the characters are. But I diverge from the previous review on two points: 1) Yes, the flawed characters do remind you of Jonathan Franzen but the difference is that Franzen's characters are incredibly annoying for the most part - there were plenty of times ...
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  • ryanschoon's avatar
    ryanschoon Author wrote 4 years, 1 month ago

    I've used Ross and Ellie's comments to rewrite my beginning. An entirely new chapter of back story will begin the book. Thanks so much for the feedback you two.