Song of Achilles Book Review | Teen Ink

Song of Achilles Book Review

March 1, 2023
By ev08 BRONZE, Lethbridge, Alberta
ev08 BRONZE, Lethbridge, Alberta
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

The Song of Achilles is a YA novel written by Madeline Miller. The book starts off with a young prince named Patroclus telling the reader about his childhood. He tells about his father who was always disappointed in him and how when he was ten, he accidentally committed a crime that was so bad, he got exiled and the title of prince stripped from him. He goes on to explain how he sought refuge with the King of Phthia, where he meets a young prince by the name of Achilles. 
The two boys are opposites, Achilles- the son of King Peleus and a sea nymph named Thetis- is destined to become the greatest warrior the Greeks have ever seen, on the other hand, Patroclus is a weak, exiled prince with no godly blood. Despite their differences, they become great friends, and eventually fall in love, risking the wrath of the Gods with their decision. Patroclus even runs away to follow Achilles as he makes his way to train with Chiron- the centaur who famously trained Perseus and Jason of the Argonauts- even though he was specifically told not to. 
When Achilles and Patroclus are 16, Helen of Sparta is kidnapped by Paris of Troy, and Patroclus is faced with a huge decision. He can either follow Achilles to war, or he can safely stay in Phthia, and know that no harm will come for him. When Thetis tells the boys a grim prophecy about the war, Patroclus decides he must follow his love to keep him safe. 
The Song of Achilles was a brilliant book that will make you laugh and cry. It spins and well-known story out in a creative way, with a heartbreaking ending. 
I found Miller’s writing to be interesting and it quickly pulled me in. I did find a few parts predictable, but that was mostly because of my previous knowledge of the trojan war. I didn’t find any major plot holes in it either, which I really appreciated because many other books like that have quite a few. The love story was well written, and neither of the boys were painfully ignorant about it, but clearly thought had been put in. I also appreciated how the book wasn’t difficult to read and the language was easy to understand. 
I found Song of Achilles to be a sad, yet sweet book that has many things I like to read. It includes mythology, fantasy, historical fiction, LGBTQ+ representation, war, and a bit of romance. 

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