The Song of Achilles

The Song of Achilles

Book - 2012
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Patroclus, an awkward young prince, follows Achilles into war, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they have learned, everything they hold dear. And that, before he is ready, he will be forced to surrender his friend to the hands of Fate. Set during the Trojan War.
Publisher: New York : Ecco, c2012
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780062060617
Branch Call Number: FIC MIL
Characteristics: 378 p. : ill. ; 24 cm


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JCLS_Ashland_Kristin May 29, 2019

I read this after having read (and loved) Circe by the same author. So, so good. For those who like old stories retold. Miller is particularly gifted at creating rich characters with realistic motivations from plot material that is often lacking in both of those things!

RomanceAddict May 18, 2019

I read this book when it was first published in 2012, and it made Madeline Miller an auto-buy author for me. "The Song of Achilles" is lyrical and deeply romantic, telling the story of Achilles and Patroclus from "The Iliad" from Patroclus' perspective. It took Miller ten years to write this book, and the end result is stunning. She has the rich detail and depth of Mary Renault. Once you read this, read "Circe", and then move on to Renault's work (especially her Alexander trilogy, starting with "Fire from Heaven").

Feb 26, 2019

I remember reading this two months ago and it's still the most heartbreaking, beautiful story I've ever read. I absolutely love the hype that stills goes on for this book. If you're debating on whether or whether not you should read it, DEFINITELY do! You won't regret a single thing.

Jan 30, 2019

Talented writer,must read book.

Chapel_Hill_MarthaW Dec 11, 2018

I picked this up after reading -- and loving to a painful degree -- Miller's second book, Circe, this summer, and went into it certain I couldn't love this as much as I loved that one. And while I think that that is, ultimately, true, I still loved this quite a bit. It's the story of the Trojan War and Achilles' role in it, told through the eyes of Patroclus, Achilles' closest friend and, in this version at least, his lover. Miller's writing is so beautiful, and I'm so impressed by the way she takes a familiar story and makes it feel new and exciting. Furthermore, despite knowing just how sadly this was going to end for all involved, I found myself racing through it, eager to see what would happen next. It's romantic and action-packed and sad and just lovely.

Nov 14, 2018

A novelization of the Iliad. Going into it I knew nothing of the story, never having read the Iliad but I loved this book. Reminiscent of Mary Renault novelizations of history and historic figures, all of which I read many years ago. Wonderful writing and characters. One of those books you just know you're going to love from the first page. One of my favorites of the year.

Oct 09, 2018

I had no idea going into this book other than the fact that it was on greek mythology and I should give it a read before reading Circe. I have never read Illiad or Odyssey but had seen movies 'Helen of Troy' and 'Troy'. I knew Achilles to be a great warrior, egotistical, and honorable. This story is a beautiful narrative on Achilles' character beyond the great warrior. The whole story is told from the eyes of a Patroclus, his lover and you get to see how two boys in that ancient era grew up, were thrown into a war as teenagers, and navigated through all the chaos to stay together. I really loved it. Highly recommended it.

Sep 24, 2018

What else can I say besides "WOW!"

I had thought I was reading another historical fiction similar to David Gemmell: filled with action in the likes of the 300 movie.

While I enjoy gritty action and adventure (Gemmell among my favorite authors) I was so happy to be wrong in my presumptions of The Song of Achilles.

Miller has a way with words to convey the deep bond and love between Patroclus and Achilles. She does an incredible job of showing us just how enamored Patroclus is with Achilles. I found my heart aching for them throughout the book, knowing their fates and the tragedy that lies ahead for them.

As others have said, most readers know how the story of Achilles ends, but Miller finds a way to make it feel fresh and raw that I found myself tearing up at the end.

KateHillier Aug 16, 2018

I'm very late to the party on this one but I'm so glad I got a chance to read this. You know the story, you know how it ends. Even if you don't there are enough hints to tell you. Everything is still raw and emotional and cruel. The gods especially along with the humans involved too.

Jul 30, 2018

Sourced from, inspired by, defying, and rising above the traditional content in classics. Deeply moving story rendered in beautiful poetry.

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Add a Quote
Jul 21, 2018

“I could recognize him by touch alone, by smell; I would know him blind, by the way his breaths came and his feet struck the earth. I would know him in death, at the end of the world.”

Dec 08, 2017

"Our man liked conquest, they did not trust a man who was conquered himself" (pg 176)

Aug 27, 2016

"Go, he waits for you."

Aug 27, 2016

"This and this and this."

Jun 07, 2015

We were like gods at the dawning of the world, and our joy was so bright we could see nothing else but the other.

Aug 23, 2012

"She used to be known as the most beautiful woman in our kingdoms. Now they say she's the most beautiful woman in the world.....A thousand ships have sailed for her"


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