Book Review: The Song of Achilles

Let’s start a new thing – any book that you’ve read on Ancient Mythology and History, just go ahead and send it to me. I WANT THEM ALL. I’m kind of a little mythology nerd, it’s my thing. Which is why as soon as I heard about Madeline Miller’s The Song of AchillesI had to get my hands on it.

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 fulfill 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.

The Good

  • Amazing writing – For this being Miller’s debut novel, wow, just wow. You would never know that this was her first book.
  • Such a beautiful relationship between Patroclus and Achilles. You really felt the growth between them and it came across very believable and natural.
  • Woohoo for YA diversity!
  • I enjoyed seeing the Trojan War from a different perspective than is usually portrayed. Patroclus was a wonderful narrator and it was nice to see him fleshed out as the main character and not his typical minor role.

“She turned to the sunlight And shook her yellow head,And whispered to her neighbor_ %22Winter is dead.”

The Bad

  • Pacing was off for me. I felt the buildup to the War for the first 200 pages was a little too long and seemed to drag in parts. Then the actual Trojan War seemed to speed through so fast and was over leaving you not appreciating the fact it had last for 10 years.
  • I agree with my friend Jill from Rant and Rave About Books that some of the major players in the War weren’t fleshed out very well – namely Hector and some of the other Trojans, as well as some of the Greeks.
  • I didn’t like Miller’s portrayal of Odysseus. She kind of turned him into a condescending asshole, which I have never gotten the impression of him being. He’s supposed to be the quiet, logical, and clever anti-warrior who is the complete opposite to the other Trojan War heroes.

I could recognize him by touch alone, by smell; I would know him blind, by the way his breaths came and his feet struck the earth. I would know him in death, at the end of the world.

Overall this was a great story with a unique perspective on the classic story of the Trojan War. It’s very obvious that Miller has done her research on the time period, which I really appreciate. It started off a little boring for me but I’m glad I stuck with it. And that ending was just written so beautifully. Hell, the whole book has a very lyrical flow to the writing. Read it now!

Final Verdict: 4/5 Stars

Have you read The Song of Achilles? What did you think about it? What other Ancient Mythology books would you recommend?

Stand Alone August Wrap-Up: The End is Here!

Well it’s finally September which means fall is just around the corner! I’m so happy we are now officially done with summer and can start heading towards my favorites time of year – cold weather! And yes, I enjoy the cold. It makes me feel all happy and think of Christmas which is basically the best time of year! But anyways, moving on…

Stand-Alone August was my way of trying to move a bunch of single novels off of my TBR to make room for the wayyyyyyy too many series that I have started but never finished. I prefer to binge read series but for some reason, this year I have started some but have yet to finish them (or at least catch up to the most recent book). So I decided to punch through as many of my standalones as possible first, and then proceed with Smashing Series September. This probably makes no sense to some of you, but I am my own kind of crazy and so it makes sense to me. 😉

August started a little slow for me, unfortunately. It took me a while to really find my reading groove, but once I did, BAM! My original plan was to read 13 books and while I didn’t quite achieve that goal, I did get pretty darn close. I finished 10 books which I think is quite commendable. And what’s even better was that for the most part – they were all really good! Unfortunately, I am still trying to catch up on reviews for all of them but I hope to get caught up over the weekend. Be on the lookout!


  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens by Alan Dean Foster – 3 stars
  • My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows, & Brodi Ashton – 5 stars, REVIEW
  • The Storied Life of AJ Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin – 4 stars,
  • We Were Liars by E. Lockhart – 4 stars, REVIEW
  • The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller – 4 stars, REVIEW
  • Uprooted by Naomi Novik – 5 stars, REVIEW
  • Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma – 4 stars
  • The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black – 5 stars
  • Da Vinci’s Tiger by L.M. Elliott – 4 stars
  • Asleep by Krystal Wade (currently finishing up today!)

Didn’t Read…

Yeahhhhh, looks like these babies will have to continue waiting for me to pick them up. Makes me kind of sad, actually. If you’ve read any of these 3 books, please let me know in the comments which ones I’m missing out on!

So what do you think about my Stand-Alone August? Have you read any really good standalone novels lately? Want to join in Smashing Series September?