The Song of Achilles has been my favourite book for the past 6 or so months now, having been gifted to me by my beloved Classics teacher on the last day of school.
Not only telling a tale of childhood friendships and traumas, blossoming romance and unbearable loss, this book manages to be mythologically accurate at the same time. Throughout the book you follow Patroclus through his life, mainly focusing on his relationship with the famous Greek hero Achilles and their various adventures together. While most classicists are very firm with the view that the hero and his right-hand man were strictly friends, Madeline Miller crosses that line and explores the ideas of a relationship forming between the two over time.
Miller is renowned for her work with historical fiction and The Song of Achilles definitely does not disappoint, having gained a large following since it was published in 2012 and winning both the ‘Women’s Prize for Fiction’ and ‘Spectrum Awards for Novel’. I would highly recommend this book to anyone, particularly those interested in history and classics, as well as those belonging to the LGBTQ+ community as Patroclus and Achilles will make your heart flutter, I promise.
This book will take you on a journey of laughter, tears, joy and sadness all within the space of one chapter but it is certainly not to be missed out on. Even if not for you, if you have a friend who is even vaguely interested in reading or wants to brush up on some of their Greek mythology, the Trojan War being a large focus towards the end of the book, this would make a great gift for the upcoming holidays (they’re a lot closer than you think, I promise).
The Song of Achilles can be found in Waterstones for £8.99, and I honestly do not think I could give a book higher praise than this one so please read it and enjoy!