Standalone Sunday is a weekly feature created by Megan at Bookslayer Reads which aims to showcase standalone books which you loved or would recommend.
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
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 difference, 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’ 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 fulfil 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.
Compared to fantasy and sci-fi books I don’t read a lot of historical fiction. After seeing some amazing reviews for The Song of Achilles though, and adding to that the fact that it is a book that retells the story of the Trojan War, I knew I had to read it for myself. I finished this book in August and I’m still not over the way it ended. I haven’t read The Iliad myself, maybe one day I’ll get around to it, but I still knew going into The Song of Achilles how this story would end for both Achilles and Patroclus. That doesn’t mean the last part of the book didn’t rip my heart out, stamp all over it, and burn the remains to a crisp.
“Name one hero who was happy.”
I considered. Heracles went mad and killed his family; Theseus lost his bride and father; Jason’s children and new wife were murdered by his old; Bellerophon killed the Chimera but was crippled by the fall from Pegasus’ back.
“You can’t.” He was sitting up now, leaning forward.
“I know. They never let you be famous and happy.”
You can check out my review for The Song of Achilles here.
What did you think of The Song of Achilles? Have you read it yet or is it still on your to-read list? Let me know in the comments and let me know if you took part in this week’s Standalone Sunday as well.