Book Club Reflections
Madeline Miller’s The Song of Achilles is a beautiful reimagining of Homer’s Iliad which gave our book club so much to love and more importantly so much to banter about!
We could go on and on reviewing this book but we decided to narrow it down to two questions from our Book Banter bookmark that we kept circling back to throughout our discussion:
What drives the story - character, plot, conflict?
The irony is that despite being based on an epic tale that was clearly driven by plot, we believe that The Song of Achilles is driven by character. The insights we gain about Achilles, Patroclus, and their relationship are what makes this story special - it’s a love story with war rather than a war story with love - and this is what sets it apart from other retellings.
Does the author get the ending right?
This was an emphatic, YES! (Don’t worry no spoilers here!) Miller’s choice to end the novel the way that she did was a bold move and, in our opinion, it paid off. In an interview at the back of the book, she says that she rewrote the ending multiple times before deciding on this one. Let’s just leave it at she got the ending right! 😉
A unanimous #BWbookclub rating of “all the stars” for The Song of Achilles! ❤️
QOTD: What’s a book club book that everyone in your group loved?
"Achilles did not slur my name as people often did; running it together as if in a hurry to be rid of it. Instead he rang each syllable."
"She was pulling his divinity forth. Mantling it like cream on every inch of skin. Helping her son make the most of his dearly bought fame."