Silence of The Girls by Pat Barker

Four Stars

Shortlisted for the Women’s Prize For Fiction 2019, Silence of The Girls has a barbaric and graphic start as Achilles enters the city walls and conquers Lyrnessus, home of Briseis. She was queen of the land and is taken as a war trophy by Achilles to serve as his personal slave.

The Silence of The Girls

Achilles is a complex character while Briseis is an astute and perceptive character.

Briseis narrates her story of her life with Achilles, Patroclus, Agamemnon and other Greek warriors, and gives perspective from slave women during the war years of Troy. The second part of the book takes more narration from Achilles and, after a particularly personal grief, becomes more dark and depressing.

This is a very readable re-telling of the Trojan war, or rather the effects on the women during the war.  Excellent writing with some stunning scenes and poetic moments.  If you enjoyed Madeline Miller’s Song of Achilles, you will probably love this one too.



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