Talk about a masterclass in how to write, and how to tell a story. My goodness.
Circe is the daughter of the sun god, but nothing about her shines too brightly. Because she’s kind and a little mediocre—both characteristics a crime in the house of the gods—she’s constantly looked down upon, and she lives her life in the shadows. But when she discovers she has the gift of witchcraft, she becomes a threat to the gods, and they banish her to the island of Aiaia. There she hones her craft, gathers herbs, and lives the peaceful life.
Until her island begins to attract guests. One of them is Odysseus, a mortal who, for Circe, will change everything.
I can’t really say it better than the Amazon blurb: “So Circe sets forth her tale, a vivid, mesmerizing epic of family rivalry, love and loss – the defiant, inextinguishable song of woman burning hot and bright through the darkness of a man’s world.”
Not only is the story captivating, so is the writing. It’s the kind of book that, if you’re a writer, nearly makes you want to give up writing, because you can’t help but think, “I could NEVER write like this—why even try?” (Don’t listen to me. Keep trying, writers).
I wish I could read this again for the first time. I’m sold on Madeline Miller, and now I want to read The Song of Achilles.
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📷: Paulina H
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