Review: The Silence of the Girls

Ancient Greece comes alive

I picked up Pat Barker’s The Silence of the Girls as I had recently read Madeline Miller’s fabulous Song of Achilles, so the blurb caught me right away.

When the Greek Queen Helen is kidnapped by Trojans, the Greeks sail in pursuit, besieging the city of Troy. Trapped in the Greek soldiers’ camp is another captured queen, Briseis.

Condemned to be bed-slave to Achilles, the man who butchered her family, she becomes a pawn in a menacing game between the bored and frustrated warriors.

In the centuries after this most famous war, history will write her off, a footnote in a bloody story scripted by vengeful men – but Briseis has a very different tale to tell.

Oh, my word. A stunning jewel of a book, which captured me in the enticing web woven by its beautifully crafted storytelling. Mainly told in Briseis’ voice, we see life through her eyes as she navigates the life thrust upon her; one of danger for such as she, a woman who once knew power, yet is now little more than a slave.

You’ll adore this book. Upon finishing, which I dreaded doing, I eased my book hangover by going straight into the sequel The Women of Troy. These epic reads, and their hugely talented writer, deserve every accolade there is.

I’ve even pre-ordered the third book, The Voyage Home, as I can’t wait to fall under Barker’s spell and the lure of the Ancient World.

1 Comment

  1. Deborah Carr says:

    I loved Pat Barler’s Regeneration trilogy and having read your review now want to read this one.

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