Friday Reads: The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

All the buzz surrounding the recent release of Circe has caught my attention, and I’ve been wanting to give Madeline Miller’s writing a try. When I saw the Kindle deal for her debut, The Song of Achilles, I couldn’t resist any longer. I read the first few pages and was immediately hooked.

Keep scrolling for this week’s Book Beginnings and The Friday 56

 

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Book Beginnings is a bookish meme hosted by Rose City Reader that asks you to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you’re reading, along with your initial thoughts/impressions.

Book Beginnings:

My father was a king and the son of kings. He was a short man, as most of us were, and built like a bull, all shoulders. He married my mother when she was fourteen and sworn by the priestess to be fruitful. It was a good match: she was an only child, and her father’s fortune would go to her husband. He did not find out until the wedding that she was simple.

I haven’t heard anything but praise for this novel, and I think I will soon be echoing that praise myself.Miller’s prose is simple yet lyrical, and incredibly engaging. I look forward to the ways in which she presents the familiar story of The Illiad in a new and interesting light.

 

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The Friday 56 is a bookish meme hosted by Freda’s Voice that asks you to: Grab a book, any book, and turn to page 56 and find a sentence that grabs you.

The Friday 56:

“I’d like to be a hero, though. I think I could do it. If the prophecy is true. If there’s a war. My mother says I am better even than Heracles was.”

I did not know what to say to this. I did not know if it was motherly bias or fact. I did not care. Not yet.

He was silent a moment. Then turned to me, suddenly. “Would you want to be a god?”

There, among the moss and olives, it struck me as funny. I laughed and, a moment later, he did too.

“I do not think it is likely,” I told him.

I stood, put down a hand for him. He took it, pulled himself up. Our tunics were dusty, and my feet tingled slightly with drying sea salt.

Even though I know what’s coming, this book is going to break my heart isn’t it? I already ship Patroclus and Achilles, and I’m sure I’m in for an emotional roller coaster. It’s also very apparent that Madeline Miller is well versed in the Classics and in Ancient History.

 

Have you read The Song of Achilles or Circe? What are you planning to read this weekend? 

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