Book Review | The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker

Hi,

I hope everyone is good, trying to find a sense of normality in these times of books and shelter. Come in, come in. You will enjoy this book, I swear.

The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker

Queen Briseis has been stolen from her conquered homeland and given as a concubine to a foreign warrior. The warrior is Achilles: famed hero, loathed enemy, ruthless butcher, darkly troubled spirit. Briseis’s fate is now indivisibly entwined with his.

No one knows it yet, but there are just ten weeks to go until the Fall of Troy, the end of this long and bitter war. This is the start of The Iliad: the most famous war story ever told. The next ten weeks will be a story of male power, male ego, male violence. But what of the women? The thousands of female slaves in the soldiers’ camp – in the laundry, at the loom, laying out the dead? Briseis is one of their number – and she will be our witness to history.

Published: August 2018

Published Edition: May 2019

Publishers: Penguin

Pages: 325

Genre: Historical Fiction, Mythology

Goodreads Star Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟

Review

This book was a recommendation from a work collegue (Thanks Meg). She has recently been getting into reading Greek mythology novels such as Circe and A Song of Achilles, and told me to read this one. I saw the book circle around last year and I didn’t really think much of it. But once I bought it, my curiousity got the better of me.

I read A Song of Achilles last year and I really enjoyed it, so when I started to read this book I was already familiar with the story. I found looking through Brisis’s eyes to be an interesting way to interperate the story. The Women of Troy see all the Greek men to be monsters, even at the end of the first chapter you know that they call Achilles the butcher.

This book pulled me in from start to finish, it took me four days to read this book and it’s been a while since I’ve read a book that quickly. While the majority of the book is in the perspective of Brisis but you also do have a couple chapters with Achilles perspective.

I don’t know why but at one point reading the book I thought Brisis loved Achilles, while she is his prized slave, I thought she cared about him but don’t expect that. I think everytime I read a book I always look for romance but know that this book doesn’t. There is rape, assult and even bloody murder. Brisis feelings for him are completely hate, anger and towards the end of the book emptyness.

I feel that it is a really good book if you’ve already read The Illiad or know the story of the Women of Troy. If you went in without knowing anything, you would probably be confused.

I hope you are all good and taking care of yourself. We might not be out of the woods due to the virus but we will always enjoy folklore by Taylor Swift (I adore this album so much).

Happy Reading xx

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