circe by madeline miller

Reviewer rating

Format reviewed: Audio
Ready by Perdita Weeks
12 hours

Circe by Madeline Miller

This is the story of Circe, a minor Greek goddess, who was the daughter of Helios who was god of the sun, and Oceanus goddess of fresh water, both of whom were titans. Circe is a nymph. Oddly Circe wasn’t born with any special powers and she grew up in her father’s palace. Most were afraid of Helios, but Circe would watch him and sit at his feet paying attention to what happened at his court. In the story it didn’t seem like her father had any special love for her, but perhaps, as the story suggests, there was some hidden affection.

Anyway, Circe the book is kind of a “coming of age” story for an immortal, so it spans a thousand or more years and involves several of the well know players from classical Greek mythology and stories, including Odysseus. There were a lot of politics involved between the gods and mortals, and the occasional nymph without special powers, who often get swept up in bigger affairs. However, Circe came into her own and she wasn’t one to accept her fate laying down, but cleverly tried to give it her own twist.

This is a story from the point of view of a goddess, which was one of the interesting features of the story. Overall, I liked the story a lot. However, perhaps because she doesn’t have special god powers she is sympathetic to the plight of mortals, in my mind, a bit too much so. It seemed that all other gods and goddesses were operating on a different wavelength, but her. Perhaps Circe was humanized too much by the author. That is really my only criticism. It was a great story that was well told and the reader did a good job also.

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