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The Silence of the Girls
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The Silence of the Girls

A Novel

Bookseller Recommendation

The Silence of the Girls

“Imagine the Trojan War through the eyes of a woman. Would Achilles still be mighty or King Agamemnon so commanding? In "The Silence of the Girls," Pat Barker dares to conquer the re-telling of this tragic tale through Briseis, once Queen of Lyrnessus. Devastated by the destruction of her family at the hands of Achilles, Briseis is claimed as a prize for his pleasure and forced to servitude in the Greek camp. When the camp is cursed and pestilence soon follows, Briseis quickly becomes a pawn between Achilles and King Agamemnon with deadly consequences. Mythology lovers, take note. Barker’s twist on “The Iliad” is outstanding. In fact, it’s epic. I loved every page!”

McLean & Eakin Booksellers image Kristin, McLean & Eakin Booksellers

Description

A Washington Post Notable Book
One of the Best Books of the Year: NPR, The Economist, Financial Times
 
Shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award
Finalist for the Women’s Prize for Fiction

Here is the story of the Iliad as we’ve never heard it before: in the words of Briseis, Trojan queen and captive of Achilles. Given only a few words in Homer’s epic and largely erased by history, she is nonetheless a pivotal figure in the Trojan War. In these pages she comes fully to life: wry, watchful, forging connections among her fellow female prisoners even as she is caught between Greece’s two most powerful warriors. Her story pulls back the veil on the thousands of women who lived behind the scenes of the Greek army camp—concubines, nurses, prostitutes, the women who lay out the dead—as gods and mortals spar, and as a legendary war hurtles toward its inevitable conclusion. Brilliantly written, filled with moments of terror and beauty, The Silence of the Girls gives voice to an extraordinary woman—and makes an ancient story new again.


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