Melanie's Reviews > The Song of Achilles

The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
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it was amazing
bookshelves: historical, lgbtqiap, romance, fantasy, read-in-2018, audible, favorites



“In the darkness, two shadows, reaching through the hopeless, heavy dusk. Their hands meet, and light spills in a flood, like a hundred golden urns pouring out the sun.”

I read The Song of Achilles many years ago, before I got into book reviewing, but it always bothered me that I didn’t have a proper review for this beautiful book. I was a little apprehensive about rereading it, because I wasn’t sure if it would hold up and impact me the way it did many years ago. But, friends, this story is still everything.

I feel like this is still a hard review to write, because I don’t want to spoil anyone, but I feel like everyone knows how this tragic tale ends. But friends, the ending of this story literally broke me and my heart into a million pieces all over again. But if for some reason you do not know the story of Achilles, please stop reading this review, pick up this book immediately, and have your life changed forever.

In high school I became really obsessed with Greek mythology. I couldn’t get enough of the adventures in The Iliad and The Odyssey. And the Trojan War is almost a decade worth of adventures that I fell completely in love with. And I always had a special soft spot for Achilles, son of a god and a king, being convinced to join the Greek army by the Greek commander, Odysseus, to become the greatest warrior in the world. But so much happens before that deadly battle between Hector and Achilles outside the gates of Troy. And The Song of Achilles is Madeline Miller’s love letter to Achilles complete story, and it is an actual masterpiece that is the best reimagining I’ve ever read in my entire life.

This is also a story about Patroclus, also a son of king, who was exiled from his kingdom when he was only ten-year-old. But when he is sent away, he is sent to Achilles’ kingdom, where Achilles claims him as his companion, and they become best friends. And eventually, they become more than friends.

“We reached for each other, and I thought of how many nights I had lain awake loving him in silence.”

Patroclus is totally bi or pan, and obviously Achilles is for sure queer, but I am not actually sure if he is only gay or where he falls in LGBTQIAP+ because I feel like he was questioning gender and gender-roles during this reread, too. But regardless, this is such a beautiful m/m romance that will leave me swooning and crying forever.

This is a story about the cruelty of men and war and how that impacts so many others. This is a story about how sometimes we can become what is not expected of us, but sometimes the expectations are impossible to hide from. This is a story about love, and friendship, and honor, and what it means to sacrifice everything for those very things. This is a story about how those things never end; not even in death.

“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, if you want a reimaging that will completely break your heart, but also heal your very soul, this is it. Madeline Miller has created something so magnificent that it truly transcends words. This is one of the most beautifully told and crafted stories I’ve ever read in my entire life. I recommend the book with the sum of who I am.

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Content and trigger warnings for murder, death, slavery, abduction, abandonment, torture, mention of rape, blood depictions, human sacrificing, physical violence, human trafficking, graphic mention of a plague, self-harm, child abuse, and war themes.
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Quotes Melanie Liked

Madeline Miller
“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.”
Madeline Miller, The Song of Achilles


Reading Progress

January 3, 2018 – Shelved
January 3, 2018 – Shelved as: to-read
January 3, 2018 – Shelved as: historical
January 3, 2018 – Shelved as: lgbtqiap
January 3, 2018 – Shelved as: romance
January 3, 2018 – Shelved as: fantasy
October 3, 2018 – Started Reading
October 3, 2018 – Shelved as: read-in-2018
October 3, 2018 – Shelved as: audible
October 6, 2018 –
20.0% ""
October 14, 2018 – Shelved as: favorites
October 14, 2018 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-21 of 21 (21 new)

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Ivana - Diary of Difference Oh, oh - I am so curious to see what you think about it!


message 2: by The Story Girl (new)

The Story Girl How are you liking the audiobook format for this? It's today's audible daily deal, so it's on sale for $3.95 and I'm thinking of getting it!


Melanie Ivana A. wrote: "Oh, oh - I am so curious to see what you think about it!"

This is a reread for me, but I really loved it back in the day! And I'm really enjoying it again! But we will see, love! I hope you're having happy reading! 💖xx


Melanie The Story Girl wrote: "How are you liking the audiobook format for this? It's today's audible daily deal, so it's on sale for $3.95 and I'm thinking of getting it!"

I actually love it. I am really picky with audiobooks, so I was scared to do it, but I am in love, babe! You should totally pick it up! 💖xx


dezzy so happy you're reading this!! hope you'll enjoy your reread ❤️


Anna That tweet is so accurate, haha.


message 7: by Errol (new)

Errol Fern Interesting.. Definitely my next book to read!


Melanie dezzy wrote: "so happy you're reading this!! hope you'll enjoy your reread ❤️"

It was so perfect, again, Dezzy! Ahhh! Now I want to reread all the things! 🎃🧡🍂 xx


Melanie Anna wrote: "That tweet is so accurate, haha."

Hahaha, right? Perfection! 🎃🧡🍂 xx


Melanie Errol wrote: "Interesting.. Definitely my next book to read!"

I hope you love it, Errol! Happy reading! 🎃🧡🍂 xx


message 11: by Pris (new) - rated it 3 stars

Pris why am I already so sad reading this review


message 12: by Sosi (new) - rated it 4 stars

Sosi Demirtshyan Oh now I want to read this book more than ever, it's on my to-read list after the Circe.


dezzy omg this is such a gorgeous review, mel!! i love this review almost as much as i love tsoa <3 you captured my feelings about this book perfectly!! i'll never forget how this book made me feel


Melanie pris wrote: "why am I already so sad reading this review"

Hehehe! This is the biggest mood of this entire book! 🧡🍂xx


Melanie Sosi wrote: "Oh now I want to read this book more than ever, it's on my to-read list after the Circe."

I hope you love it, sweetheart! 🧡🍂xx


Melanie dezzy wrote: "omg this is such a gorgeous review, mel!! i love this review almost as much as i love tsoa <3 you captured my feelings about this book perfectly!! i'll never forget how this book made me feel"

Awh, Dezzy, I love YOU so much! I hope you're having happy reading, sweetheart! 🧡🍂xx


message 17: by KAS (new)

KAS So glad you adored your re-read, Melanie! Beautiful, heartfelt review, sweetie ;) 😊❤️😊


message 18: by Pris (new) - rated it 3 stars

Pris I’m starting this, but I’m so scared. I don’t want to cry after reading the Greatcoats series. AHHHHH


message 19: by Fadi (new) - rated it 5 stars

Fadi Antwan I haven’t felt this depressed since watching The End of the F***ing World. This book completely destroyed me. 💔 Don’t know if I’m ever getting over that ending.


Emina Balerina I have this exact edition and I felt almost exactly the same as you about it! Except I did not re-read it after a few years, but after 2 days!!! It's just....a phenomenon, and so underrated! Why don't more people know about it!?!?!?


message 21: by Elyse (new) - added it

Elyse  Walters Big time THANK YOU!!!


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