Published by Bloomsbury Publishing on September 20th, 2011
Genres: Historical Fiction, Retelling, LGBTQ+
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. Despite their differences, Achilles befriends the shamed prince, and as they grow into young men skilled in the arts of war and medicine, their bond blossoms into something deeper - despite the displeasure of Achilles's mother Thetis, a cruel sea goddess. But when word comes that Helen of Sparta has been kidnapped, Achilles must go to war in distant Troy and fulfill his destiny. Torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus goes with him, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they hold dear.
“He is a weapon, a killer. Do not forget it. You can use a spear as a walking stick, but that will not change its nature.”
The Song of Achilles is a coming-of-age story told from Patroclus’ point of view, combining romance, heroism, and tragedy. This was five stars worth of pain and hands down one of the best retellings I’ve ever read in my life.
Let me commence by praising Madeline Miller’s beautiful and flawless writing. You can tell she had worked on this for a long, long time, for there wasn’t a single word out of place. Every word had its purpose, landed its mark. The Song of Achilles is one of the most quotable books I’ve read in my life. For this review, I could barely choose between these lines that comprise delicate wording, strong messages, and raw emotion.