The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
As you must all be well aware of by now, I am a historical fiction fanatic and when this one got recommended to me it was an instant purchase. Winner of the Orange Prize 2012 for fiction this was surely going to be a thrilling read, and it did not disappoint. Unlike many of the hard wired ‘can’t put this down’ books, ones that need to give you suspense after suspense and cliff hangers to rival Dover, The Song of Achilles was soft and inviting. An emotional book provoking feelings of love towards the two main characters. Miller needed no more than love to write this book (it took her 10 dedicated years to accomplish), and her passion for her young protagonists is evident like no over read.
Not only are the characters superbly constructed, but her attention to detail is unimaginable. I read because a book can transport me places I have never been before and Miller took me to ancient Greece where I felt the warmth of the sun and the cold stare of the sea nymphs, where I watched a friendship turn to love and I flinched when a life was taken before my eyes; a place where mythology and mortality are beautifully combined. However, if I had studied history would I feel the same way?
I recommend this book, probably my best read for a fair few months because of the writer’s talent for storytelling.