The Iliad and The Odyssey have been sitting on my shelf for a while now. I am ashamed to say that I never really had much interest in reading them. I know. Homer! First historian! One of those “stories of stories”! And yet.. nope, never really interested me.
The Song of Achilles, however? Why should not I be interested? It won this year’s Orange Prize, it is universally loved by bloggers.. I could not wait until my hold would finally come in at the library.
Can I give you the short version? I loved this. I started reading. I could hardly put it down. I stayed up ’till far past midnight in order to know what would happen, how it would happen, even though I knew what would happen, even though I knew we would irrevocably come to that tragic ending. And yet, I loved every page along the way of getting to that end. I loved the end, even though it had me in tears.
If ever a book had me interested in reading the original, it is this one, for this version of Achilles and Patroclus’ life before and during the Trojan war is stellar.
There is just one question that has been nagging at me these past
weeks months since finishing the book. Yes, it was definitely one of the top reads of this year, and apparently I am not alone given the praise it receives everywhere.. But I often find that books like this one, that have me feverishly obsessed with the characters and the story and the prose, have me questioning if, when I return to it one day, I will find it as good and as beautiful. Because stories like this can feel a little bit like a dream, that is too easily popped. I hope that won’t turn out to be the case for The Song of Achilles. I even feel a little guilty for daring to mention it.
Other Opinions: Savidge Reads, The Allure of Books, Vulpes Libris, Rivers I Have Known, Novel Insights, A Fiction Habit, Devourer of Books, A Work in Progress, Page247, Always cooking up something, She Reads Novels, Fleur Fisher, The parenthesis and the footnote, nomadreader, Sam Still Reading, Killin’ Time Reading, Buried in Print, The Literary Stew, Fizzy Thoughts, The Broke and the Bookish, Farm Lane Books Blog, Musings, Gossamer Obsessions.
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