The Song of Achilles

The Song of Achilles
Madeline Miller
Reviewed by Lesley Gallagher
Bloomsbury
Mon, 05/09/2011
9781408816035
£18.99

The Song of Achilles is a beautifully crafted debut about the Achilles legend, seen through the eyes of Patroclus, his lifelong companion and lover.

The vicissitudes of their relationship are expounded against the backdrop of the Trojan War and the vanities of both men and gods. It would be easy to construct a comic-book representation of the characters – Hector, Ajax, Apollo et al – yet, although the unfolding bonds and divisions between the principal players are dramatic, fast paced and at times grisly, they are understated and believable, allowing the reader to become deeply involved – so much so that the emotional and inevitable climax is difficult to bear. A must read.
 

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