Madeline Miller’s The Song of Achilles

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Madeline Miller’s debut novel, The Song of Achilles, offers a fresh take on the story of Homer’s Iliad by focusing on the relationship between Achilles, the epic’s hero, and Patroclus, his lover. More broadly the book transforms an ancient martial epic into a modern novel by looking at the internal lives of the characters and their feelings towards one another. In addition to love,¬†Miller also addresses questions connected with war, honor, and pride. Miller claims that she worked on the novel for ten years, and I would say that the result is well-worth the effort. The Song of Achilles is not only a great retelling of a classic, but moreover a work in its own right that will stick with you long after you finish the book.

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