Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Song of Troy” as Want to Read:
The Song of Troy
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Song of Troy

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  1,228 ratings  ·  76 reviews
The tragic and terrible drama of the war between Greeks and Trojans, the long siege of Troy, and the impact of one woman's beauty on the fate of two nations, is played out again in this dazzling novel based on Homer's Iliad.

Here is the enchanting Helen, who we first meet as a spoiled teenager and whose passion for the handsome, reckless Paris leads to the betrayal of her h
Paperback, 483 pages
Published August 3rd 1998 by Orion (first published 1998)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Song of Troy, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Song of Troy

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,659)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
This is the kind of historical fiction that I love to read. I've always had a passing interest in mythology, but sometimes it can be so dry! "So & So, son of Such & Such, did A, B, C, & D, had son Whatchamacallit with Whatshername who was the daughter of Whosthatguyagain?..." That's one of the reasons I've put off reading the Bible. Too many begats.

But McCullough manages to work all of the necessary begats in, while at the same time still moving the story along, and further making y
Jul 13, 2014 Mariana rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who is interested in the story of the Trojan War - a must read!
Song of Troy is, probably, the best recollection of the Trojan War I've read so far. Colleen McCullough, with her stupend writing and style, presents us with this book on a well-known subject which, nevertheless, manages to keep the reader's interest from first page to last.

Colleen masterfully lays down the story of the most famous war of the ancient world, all the while bringing a new scope to the narrative, as each chapter is written through the eyes of a different character: the beautiful, bu
A Canção de Tróia é um livro que me chegou muito bem recomendado, não só por colegas bloggers em cuja opinião confio bastante, mas também porque o meu pai leu-o e gostou muito. Apesar de o ter fisicamente, li a versão em inglês: primeiro, porque não o tenho comigo e depois porque a ideia de pegar num livro que o meu pai folheou me enche de uma tristeza infinita. Não me perguntem porquê, o luto tem destas coisas.

Sabia algumas coisas sobre a famosa Guerra de Tróia: uns pedaços de sabedoria popular
I was moved to tears by this book, and felt ridiculous shedding them. I knew who would live and die, and exactly how it all turned out. That's McCullough's genius, though. She gives us all the little details, history books leave out, that make us feel for, and in some instances love, or hate a character. Everyone knows Odysseus was brilliant, but we don't think about how much that brilliance would have cost him. Achilles was brave, but he could have been sweet, kind and fair alongside his ruthle ...more
rating: 4/5

A beautiful retelling of the Illiad. McCullough chooses to tell the tale through a variety of POVs (like Agamemnon, Hektor, Odysseus, Helen, Achilles, Paris, etc.) but it doesn't get confusing, whether it is my previous knowledge of the Illid or McCullough's writing style and strong characters filled with unique personalities (or a combination of both), I had no problem keeping track of the narrators. This style also enables us to see the conflict from all sides, to view all the chara
This was my first read from historical fiction heavyweight Colleen McCullough. The story of the Trojan War isn't anything new by a longshot but McCullough presents the tale through multiple POV's from both sides of the conflict that creates an interesting experience. I really enjoyed this book even though, like the siege of Troy itself, it started to wear me down by the end.

3.5 stars rounded up to a 4
To write a story where the end is already known and the characters are those of legend would seem to leave little for a writer to work with but McCullough has no problem making this story come alive.
Told by multiple points of view, the story could at times feel as if it was a little choppy but the different voices were distinct and interesting. Having parts of the story told by the Trojans and parts by the Greeks, gave a wonderful overview of the war from both sides.
Every writer has their own
Extraordinário livro narrado na primeira pessoa por diversas personagens, iniciando-se muitos anos antes da famosa Guerra de Tróia. A excelência dos detalhes, da geografia, as peculiares características dos gregos e dos troianos, tudo contribui para esta ser uma obra imperdível. CM tem aqui o seu melhor romance.
David Sierra
Colleen McCullough vuelve a mostrar su dominio de la ficción histórica acercándonos esta vez a la guerra que tanto influyó en la literatura occidental. Los personajes se nos muestran cercanos, con sus dudas y flaquezas, narrándonos algunos en primera persona momentos clave de la misma historia. Helena, Aquiles, Ulises, Príamo, Héctor, y tantos, tantos iconos de la Grecia Clásica. La narración hace que la historia nos parezca verosímil, intentando unir la mitología con las realidades descubiertas ...more
the story of the Trojan war told in a manner more akin to today`s readers. so if you don`t have the stomach for The Iliad this could act as a nice substitute.

it is epic in scope (as it should be) beggining with the young years of the many important characters, and then after many stories set them off to the war. the war in itself is also long and with many tribulations but this is not a complaint, since the book delivers what the movie failed to.

also of interest you should see that each chapter
I really really liked this books but there were some points which prevented me from giving it 5 stars.
1) Not everyone can pull off first person narrative. She had many characters telling the story but it seemed liked it was one person just every chapter he called himself different.
2) lack of development in relationships. It just states: a loves b, b is the father of c and so on.
3) Briseis, Achilles, Patroclos triangle. So clished, of cource on person had to be the jelous one, the other — noble o
Carrie Slager
The Song of Troy is thus far my favourite book dealing with the Trojan War and I’m lucky I even found it at all because it was in the ‘Almost New’ section of my local bookstore. I almost never found it, except that the picture of Helen on the spine drew me to it. Yes, I judge books by their covers; I’m a horrible person. It’s nearly five hundred pages long but they read fast and before too long, it’s over and you’re left feeling sad. You probably know how the Trojan War ends (hint: the Greeks ki ...more
In general, I did like this take on the Trojan tale, but I have a couple of criticisms.

The narration device of having a different viewpoint in each chapter is one of my favourites, but in this case it was often difficult to tell one from the other. I think having fewer voices, more clearly defined, would have made the story immeasurely better.

My other criticism is that the author clearly has her favourites. Achilles and Odysseus have been firmly manipulated, with portions of the story greatly c
Zoe Saadia
Greatly enjoyed this novel!
Being a hardcore fan of McCullough already, I've expected much and, surprisingly, I got more.
As expected she once again succeeded in bringing to life a very ancient, and mainly forgotten, world of a legend, but she did more than this for me with the ever-changing, first-person point of view.
Deserves 5 stars in my opinion :)
I have two favourite stories set in Troy, and this one seems a nice choice for my First Book. The war comes to life, the characters step out of Homer and breathe - the good, the bad, and the slightly derranged - and Odyseus is my kind of hero, just a guy who wants to get the job done properly and go home.
Dec 05, 2007 Bookish rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who loves a good story about troy
Shelves: goodreads
wow! what a great book! this author continues to dazzle me - she has always been one of my favorites! the way this story is told is unique - each "chapter" told by a different character and it all blends in beautifully! i didn't think i'd like this approach but it worked and well!
Revisión de la Iliada despojada de factores mágicos, divinos y míticos. Los héroes, por ejemplo, son bastardos, lo que explica que sean hijos de mujer y dios. Ese punto desmitificador está bien, pero la alternancia de puntos de vista en la narración no cuaja. Se deja leer.
Good treatment of the Trojan war, but I was expecting more in terms of scope based on her Caesar series. Not epic...but a good read. Pretty down to earth in terms of the involvement of the gods.
I just read this again, it is so good!
David Campton
Yet another retelling of one of the most epic stories in human history. I must confess I was sceptical about reading this given my familiarity with the story and my lack of familiarity with McCullough's historical fiction. All I associated her with was the old TV mini-series of Thorn Birds, which wasn't likely to win me over. However, a combination of an offer on Amazon Kindle and moderately good reviews on Goodreads persuaded me to give it a go, and I'm glad I did. This is a richly textured, we ...more
Genia Lukin
This is the story of the Iliad, retold by Colleen McCulough, one of the big and most meticulous historical fiction writers around.

However, this book fails to live up the the usual McCulough expectations. Her research is meticulous, as usual; she's clearly read the Iliad, dug into the history of ancient Greece, etc', but somehow, unlike in her vast and significantly superior Masters of Rome series, she fails to engage.

Her problems in this book are threefold:

She strikes a poor balance between revi
I think I liked the idea of this book more than I liked the book itself. Getting inside the story of Troy? Sounds great! And in some ways it was. There were parts that were interesting.
The problem is, that the characters just didn't come alive to me. It's always annoying when you have your character do the explaining for you, because nobody does that naturally. I'm not sitting here wearing woollen socks thinking: "she knew that in some cultures woollen socks weren't as common as in Finland. Smil
There is no group of characters I am more enamoured with in mythology, legend, and history than those of the Trojan and Greek forces whose legend centers around the action on the plains of Troy. I appreciated that Colleen McCullough tried to show me each of their unique perspective as the years crawled on. And while this book is not perfect (but what is?) and there are many things I question, I liked reading it. I looked forward to ,reading another chapter, even though I know everything that hap ...more
Monica Dias
I...I don't know what to think of this book. I started reading it thinking that I would either love, or hate it, but it turns out that I was wrong.
This was one of the most frustrating books I've ever read. On one hand, there are stuff here that I really like, for example, the story is very well written and it flows nicely, I can tell that Collen McCullough has a deep respect for the Trojan War legendarium, and there are part that are really engaging and interesting.
On the other hand, there is
Colleen McCullough gives us a modern retelling of the ancient story, which on the surface is about war but really is about what makes us human – valor, love, loyalty, pride, leadership and deceit.

McCullough’s pacing is great; the action moves along so quickly it’s hard to find a place to put the book down. She starts off 30 years before the war to set up the story and characters. This is in my opinion the strongest part of the book, perhaps because the author’s strengths seem to be historical re
The most detailed among all the Troy war novels I have read, both in charachters and events descriptions, I also loved how it all begins with the fathers of the heroes we all know so well, so that we can know their roots.
Every main charachter has a chance to tell the story in one or more chapters, and even though you can't really see a huge difference in the ways they talk, maybe they don't really convey their different feelings and attitudes properly, but it's a nice shot anyway to know them be
Kathy Hale
the Trojan War has always fascinated me. This fictional account really brought all of the characters alive for me. It was especially good the way the author wrote each chapter from the point of view of the different characters and how they interrelated to each other such as Helen, Achilles, Odysseus and others. This would be a good companion book for students reading the Illiad to explain some of the Greek customs, war etiquette and the character interplay of the classic piece of literature.
Appreciated the touches that only a woman would really think to put to this story. Not totally convinced by this moderately romantic depiction of Achilles, but that's more my own bias. Never really though I could love Odysseus so much. Guessing she's not planning on covering the Odyssey. I'd be all over that.
I had to order this from Amazon UK as it has not been published in the US; it was worth every penny & after reading the paperback I ordered the hardback version so I could loan the paperback. This is more approachable than the Odyssey and Iliad, bringing to life the stories of Greek heroes & villains other than just Achilles & Hector, Odysseus & Agamemnon, and fleshes out the the women as well: Helen, Iphigenia, Clytemnestra, Cassandra and more. I would recommend this to anyone w ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 88 89 next »
  • The Mask of Apollo
  • Memnon
  • Homer's Daughter
  • The War at Troy
  • The Beacon at Alexandria
  • The Gates of Troy
  • Gildenford (Norman Quartet, #1)
  • God of War
  • Hero of Rome (Gaius Valerius Verrens, #1)
  • Achilles
  • The Assyrian
  • Of Merchants & Heroes
  • The Memoirs of Helen of Troy
  • Scroll of Saqqara
  • Salamina
  • La reine soleil
  • In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great: A Journey from Greece to Asia
Colleen McCullough AO (born 1 June 1937) is an internationally acclaimed Australian author. Colleen was born in Wellington in central west New South Wales to James and Laurie McCullough.

McCullough was born in Wellington, in outback central west New South Wales, in 1937 to James and Laurie McCullough. She grew up during World War II. Before entering tertiary education, she previously earned a livin
More about Colleen McCullough...
The Thorn Birds The First Man in Rome (Masters of Rome, #1) The Grass Crown (Masters of Rome, #2) Fortune's Favorites (Masters of Rome, #3) Caesar (Masters of Rome, #5)

Share This Book

“Beware the Greeks when they bear gifts.” 0 likes
“Give a Greek enough rope and he'll hang everyone else in sight.” 0 likes
More quotes…