My past two book reviews have been very negative, to say the least, but I have a completely positive one for you today! Circe by Madeline Miller is hands down the best book I’ve read in months. I’m going to get more into my thoughts below after the synopsis. This review will be spoiler free because this is a newer book and I don’t want to ruin it.
In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe is a strange child—not powerful, like her father, nor viciously alluring like her mother. Turning to the world of mortals for companionship, she discovers that she does possess power—the power of witchcraft, which can transform rivals into monsters and menace the gods themselves.
Threatened, Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, where she hones her occult craft, tames wild beasts and crosses paths with many of the most famous figures in all of mythology, including the Minotaur, Daedalus and his doomed son Icarus, the murderous Medea, and, of course, wily Odysseus.
But there is danger, too, for a woman who stands alone, and Circe unwittingly draws the wrath of both men and gods, ultimately finding herself pitted against one of the most terrifying and vengeful of the Olympians. To protect what she loves most, Circe must summon all her strength and choose, once and for all, whether she belongs with the gods she is born from, or the mortals she has come to love.
As a lover of all things historical and mythological, I knew I had to read Circe. This story was so rich and beautifully written. If you’re familiar with Greek mythology you’ll love “meeting” the famous figures throughout the book. I definitely think having a basic knowledge of Greek mythology will enrich your reading experience but I don’t think it’s necessary. I definitely didn’t know about every single character but the book provides plenty of details and I don’t feel I missed out on anything by not knowing all of the mythology. This is a slower paced story at times. I personally don’t mind that if the characters and atmosphere are interesting and well written (these are) but this may be boring to some readers. If you enjoy history, mythology and just well written books in general than Circe is one you need to pick up.
I know that was kind of a short and sweet review but I really don’t want to spoil anything. Madeline Miller has another book available called The Song of Achilles which I will be reviewing sometime in March. If you’ve read this book I’d love to know what you thought! I’d also love to know if this sounds like a book you’d enjoy! Thanks for reading and have a great day!