Imagine Greece in the age of heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to the court of King Peleus and his perfect son Achilles. By all rights, their paths should never cross, but Achilles takes the shamed prince as his friend, and as they grow into young men, improving their skills in the arts of war and medicine, their bond blossoms into something deeper – despite the displeasure of Achilles’ mother Thetis, a cruel sea goddess. But then word comes that Helen of Sparta has been kidnapped. Torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus journeys with Achilles to Troy, not knowing that the following years will test everything they hold dear.
Just to be very clear: I loved this book. A LOT. This story was gripping, heartwrenching, and worth the pain from the very first page. It made me feel an abundance of emotions, constantly dragging me between admiration, sadness, pride, and what-not. Honestly, I feel like Madeline Miller did such a great job with rendering a tale so familiar to all of us: the tale of the Trojan War. She intensified the drama, heightened the stakes, and made everything piece together like one big puzzle.
Also, I love how natural she made the presence of mythological aspects feel. As a reader, you’ll most likely forget that all of it is not true, and never was true, while reading. That’s probably because all of Millers’ characters have such depth to them. Each and every person has got their own story, its own background, and Miller did not shy away from trying to combine all of those complex characters in Achilles’ and Patroclus’ tale.
Aside from many beautiful characters, this book also contained an intriguing plotline. The whole story is told over three decades, meaning that there’s a lot happening, plot-wise. All in all, that meant that there wasn’t a single boring page to be found in this book! It also allowed Miller to write meaningful and plausible character developments.
If I haven’t already made this clear enough: I really love The Song of Achilles. I think its lyrical prose is out of this world, together with its lovely and intriguing characters. Maybe it’s time to stop raving. I think I’ve said enough. Go read the book!!!
|Written by: Madeline Miller|
|Publisher: Ecco Books, now a part of HarperCollins|
|Interested? Buy the book here.|