“A bold and subversive retelling of the goddess’s story,” this #1 New York Times bestseller is “both epic and intimate in its scope, recasting the most infamous female figure from the Odyssey as a hero in her own right” (Alexandra Alter, The New York Times). In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe is a strange child — not powerful, like her father, nor viciously alluring like her mother. Turning to the world of mortals for companionship, she discovers that she does possess power — the power of witchcraft, which can transform rivals into monsters and menace the gods themselves. Threatened, Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, where she hones her occult craft, tames wild beasts and crosses paths with many of the most famous figures in all of mythology, including the Minotaur, Daedalus and his doomed son Icarus, the murderous Medea, and, of course, wily Odysseus. But there is danger, too, for a woman who stands alone, and Circe unwittingly draws the wrath of both men and gods, ultimately finding herself pitted against one of the most terrifying and vengeful of the Olympians. To protect what she loves most, Circe must summon all her strength and choose, once and for all, whether she belongs with the gods she is born from, or the mortals she has come to love. With unforgettably vivid characters, mesmerizing language, and page-turning suspense, Circe is a triumph of storytelling, an intoxicating epic of family rivalry, palace intrigue, love and loss, as well as a celebration of indomitable female strength in a man’s world. #1 New York Times Bestseller — named one of the Best Books of the Year by NPR, the Washington Post, People, Time, Amazon, Entertainment Weekly, Bustle, Newsweek, the A.V. Club, Christian Science Monitor, Refinery 29, Buzzfeed, Paste, Audible, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Thrillist, NYPL, Self, Real Simple, Goodreads, Boston Globe, Electric Literature, BookPage, the Guardian, Book Riot, Seattle Times, and Business Insider.

Madeline Miller
April 14, 2020
416 pages

File Size: 21 MB
Available File Formats: PDF AZW3 DOCX EPUB MOBI TXT or Kindle audiobook Audio CD(Several files can be converted to each other)
Language: English, Francais, Italiano, Espanol, Deutsch, chinese

Winner of the 2019 Indie Choice Award Shortlisted for the 2019 Women’s Prize for Fiction Named one of the ‘Best Books of 2018′ by NPR, The Washington Post, Buzzfeed, People, Time, Amazon,Entertainment Weekly, Bustle, Newsweek, the A.V. Club, Christian Science Monitor, Southern Living,and Refinery 29. “Circe,’ [is] a bold and subversive retelling of the goddess’s story that manages to be both epic and intimate in its scope, recasting the most infamous female figure from the Odyssey as a hero in her own right.”―Alexandra Alter, New York Times”One of the most amazing qualities of this novel [is]: We know how everything here turns out – we’ve known it for thousands of years – and yet in Miller’s lush reimagining, the story feels harrowing and unexpected. The feminist light she shines on these events never distorts their original shape; it only illuminates details we hadn’t noticed before.”―Ron Charles, Washington Post”[Miller] gives voice to Circe as a multifaceted and evolving character…’Circe’ is very pleasurable to read, combining lively versions of familiar tales and snippets of other, related standards with a highly psychologized, redemptive and ultimately exculpatory account of the protagonist herself.”―Claire Messud, New York Times Book Review”The story of Circe’s entanglement with Odysseus lasts far beyond the narrative of “The Odyssey,” making for compelling material to revisit. But ultimately it’s as a character that Circe stands apart….Through her elegant, psychologically acute prose, Miller gives us a rich female character who inhabits the spaces in between.”―Colleen Abel, Minneapolis Star Tribune”Miller’s lush, gold-lit novel – told from the perspective of the witch whose name in Greek has echoes of a hawk and a weaver’s shuttle – paints another picture: of a fierce goddess who, yes, turns men into pigs, but only because they deserve it.”― “so vivid, so layered, you could get lost in it… Whether or not you think you like Greek Mythology, this is just great storytelling. It feels cinematic.”―NPR’s Here & Now”Miller’s spell builds slowly, but by the last page you’ll be in awe. In prose of dreamlike simplicity, she reimagines the myth of Circe.”―People”Miller, with her academic bona fides and born instinct for storytelling, seamlessly grafts modern concepts of selfhood and independence to her mystical reveries of smoke and silver, nectar and bones.”―Entertainment Weekly”This telling, in the sorceress’s own words, is not the version we think we know.”―New York Times ‘T Magazine’ “Miller gives voice to a previously muted perspective in the classics, forging a great romance from the scraps left to us by the ancients….Circe is, instead, a romp, an airy delight, a novel to be gobbled greedily in a single sitting.”―Aida Edemariam, Guardian”In Madeline Miller’s “Circe” – the gorgeous and gimlet-eyed follow-up to her Orange Prize-winning first novel, “The Song of Achilles” – the goddess is young and romantic enough at the start to feel a tiny bit let down that she’s not shackled to a rock like her uncle, Prometheus, getting her liver pecked out each day.”―Laura Collins-Hughes, Boston GlobeAmbitious in scope, Circe is above all the chronicle of an outsider woman who uses her power and wits to protect herself and the people she loves, ultimately looking within to define herself. Readers will savor the message of standing against a hostile world and forging a new way.”―Shelf Awareness”A retelling of ancient Greek lore gives exhilarating voice to a witch… [Circe is] a sly, petulant, and finally commanding voice that narrates the entirety of Miller’s dazzling second novel….Readers will relish following the puzzle of this unpromising daughter of the sun god Helios and his wife, Perse, who had negligible use for their child….Expect Miller’s readership to mushroom like one of Circe’s spells. Miller makes Homer pertinent to women facing 21st-century monsters.”―Kirkus, Starred Review”An epic spanning thousands of years that’s also a keep-you-up-all-night page turner.”―Ann Patchett, author of Commonwealth”With lyric beauty of language and melancholy evocative of Keats’ “Ode on a Grecian Urn”, CIRCE asks all the big questions of existence while framing them in the life story of the famous goddess who had the magic of transformations. A veritable Who’s Who of the gods of Olympus and the heroes of ancient Greece, Circe knows them all and we see them through her perceptive eyes. This is as close as you will ever come to entering the world of mythology as a participant. Stunning, touching, and unique.”―Margaret George, author of The Confessions of Young Nero”Circe bears its own transformative magic, a power enabled by Miller’s keen eye for beauty, adventure, and reinvention. Through the charms of a misfit heroine, the world of gods becomes stunningly alive, and the world of our own humanity–its questions, loves, and bonds–is illuminated. This book is an immense gift to anyone who reads to find their own bravery and quest.”―Affinity Konar, author of Mischling”Madeline Miller, master storyteller, conjures Circe glowing and alive – and makes the Gods, nymphs and heroes of ancient Greece walk forth in all their armored splendor. Richly detailed and written with such breathtaking command of story, you will be held enchanted. A breathtaking novel.”―Helen Simonson, author of The Summer Before the War and Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand”Circe is the utterly captivating, exquisitely written, story of an ordinary, and extraordinary, woman’s life”―Eimear McBride, author of A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing”Written with power and grace, this enchanting, startling, gripping story casts a spell as strong and magical as any created by the sorceress Circe.”―Mary Doria Russell, author of Epitaph”Madeline Miller’s re-imagining of the witch Circe from The Odyssey makes for an intriguing, feminist adventure novel that is perfectly suited for the #TimesUp moment. Circe is also a smart read that has much to say about the long-term consequences of war and a culture that values violence and conquest over compassion and learning…Miller mines intriguing details from the original tale to imagine a rich backstory for Circe that allows readers to re-visit the world of Olympians and Titans in Greek mythology. From the court of the Titans, the reader meets Circe’s parents, the god Helios and nymph Perse, and is introduced to a world of supernatural power players that is every bit as back-biting, gossip-filled and vicious as any episode of House of Cards.”―May-Lee Chai, Dallas News”‘Circe’ is a sentence-by-sentence miracle”;―Michigan Daily About the Author Madeline Miller was born in Boston and attended Brown University where she earned her BA and MA in Classics. She lives in Narbeth, PA with her husband and two children. The Song of Achilles was awarded the Orange Prize for Fiction and has been translated into twenty-five languages. <div id="

  • Brief summary, no spoilers.I know it may be odd to talk about “spoilers” when this is the story of a mythological character, but there are reasons for that and I will explain in the review.This book is told from the point of view of Circe, daughter of the sun Titan Helios. Her mother was Perse, a sea nymph who was the granddaughter of the Titan Oceanos.We mainly know of Circe from the Odyssey and her interactions with Odysseus. She was known as a sorceress who lived on an island and turned men into pigs. We know from the Odyssey that Circe was often seen working at a huge loom surrounded by dangerous animals such as wolves and lions, yet they were all under her control. We also know from the Odyssey that Odysseus – by virtue of his wiles – not only avoids Circe’s sorcery but beds her as well. When he leaves she gives him advice on how to survive the perils on his seaward journey home to his homeland of Ithaca, such as Scylla and Charybdis, so he can reunite with his beloved wife Penelope and son Telemachus.So why did I like this book so much? Well, stand back, because I’m about to gush.I am a big fan of Greek mythology, and I was a big fan of this author’s previous book, The Song of Achilles. Yet this one was even better.Circe was not a major figure in the Odyssey; in fact when I first opened the book I realized I got her mixed up with Calypso. But I won’t make that mistake anymore. This minor character has now become my favorite character of all thanks to this author’s brilliant work.Because this book is told from Circe’s point of view, we get to intimately know her – not just her history and story but her thoughts as well. The reason this is so important is because we come to empathize with Circe. We tend to think of the Greek Gods as so fickle and often cruel – and indeed they are often depicted that way – yet with Circe, we meet a goddess who is so human and so very, very likable.The reason I made the “no spoilers” comment at the start, is because Circe’s experiences include her meeting and interacting with various other figures from Greek myth, and it’s a big part of the enjoyment of this novel to experience it the way the author intended, without knowing what is going to happen next.I took a few days to read this book but that was not because it was a slow read. Just the opposite; I was so happy while reading it that I would stop myself after each chapter just to pace myself so it wouldn’t end too soon.I highly (obviously) recommend this to any fans of Greek mythology and for sure to anyone who enjoyed The Song of Achilles. But you don’t have to know much about the Odyssey or Greek mythology to love this book. Although this novel is about a god, it’s really a story about what it means to be human.
  • DNF. Stopped at page 126.I love mythology, I do not, however, love the F word or other crude language.
  • {My Thoughts}What Worked For MeA Classic Tale Reimagined – Taking a classic story and reinventing it with a modern twist is nothing new. We see it time after time, but the usual reimagining places the characters and plot in a contemporary setting as the story plays out. With Circe, Madeline Miller kept the characters and the setting, and instead shifted the focus, placing it solely on Circe. Those of you with a background in mythology will see many, many elements from classic Greek mythology (especially The Odyssey) popping up in this book. However, if you’ve lived under a rock and never even knew there was such a thing as mythology it won’t matter. Miller gives you everything you need to know and she does it seamlessly.A Woman with Attitude – If you’re anything like me, you will come to adore Circe, the book and the woman. Born into one of the two most powerful families of gods, Circe adored her father, Helios, but never quite measured up. Where her siblings were gorgeous and powerful from an early age, Circe was plain and seemingly powerless. Tormented by her own family, Circe grew more and more fascinated with mortals. Falling in love with one, brought out her previously unknown powers of witchcraft.“I was too wild to feel shame. It was true. I would not just uproot the world, but tear it, burn it, do any evil I could to keep Glaucos by my side. But what stayed most in my mind was the look on my grandmother’s face when I’d said that word, pharmaka. It was not a look I know well among the gods.”This girl had gumption and she used her new power to punish her rival, creating a monster all came to feared. But, she paid a price for going too far. Circe was banished to the small island of Aiaia for eternity. This is where the book Circe really took off for me. On the island, I found it impossible not to admire and root for this woman who year after year, century after century, faced her fears, honed her powers, and learned to stand up for herself.“She was gone. But I said it anyway, to that great empty room and my son’s dreaming ears: “You do not know what I can do.”Soap Opera of the Gods – You might think a story of a woman alone on an island could get dull, but you would be wrong. Circe lived a lonely life, but was not without the occasional visitor, many bringing adventure and challenges to her life. Hermes flitted in and out with news and gossip from the worlds of gods and mortals. Her sister, Pasiphae, granted Circe temporary exile to help deal with her little Minotaur problem. Shipwrecked sailors soon discovered the wrath of Circe. And then came Odysseus, perhaps her most well known visitor, bringing to Circe a lasting love she was willing to die for. The level of drama never failed!That House – I really can’t say any more, but for those who have read Circe: I want that house!What Didn’tAbsolutely EVERYTHING worked for me in Circe!{The Final Assessment}Madeline Miller is definitely a writer to admire. Reinventing the life of a minor goddess into a remarkable woman while remaining faithful to the original mythology can be no small feat. Miller did it in the best way possible, by knowing her star character and sticking to her story. From start to finish Circe was all about Circe, no long tangents, no veering off into some other god’s story. Just Circe: her life, her feelings, her mistakes, her heart, her choices. I haven’t yet read Millers’s debut, Song of Achilles, but I will. I’m already looking forward to that next trip to ancient Greece. If it’s anything like Circe, I’m sure to find the journey immersive, entertaining, exciting, everything! Just incase I haven’t been clear, I loved Circe. She will be one of my top ten books this year. Grade: A
  • Having read ‘The Odyssey’ ages ago, I admit all I remembered of Circe was that she’d used her witchcraft to turn Odysseus’ men into swine and the speed with which she submitted to Odysseus when her magic didn’t work on him. I liked how she surrounded herself with wild animals but wasn’t impressed with how quickly she invited Odysseus to her bed and allowed him and his men to spend a year on her island.I’m not usually a fan of stories told in first person, but this was, without doubt, the best way to tell this story. Ms Miller has taken someone who was a minor character in ‘The Odyssey’ and given her a larger-than-life story. I think what makes this book such a riveting read is the total focus on Circe. There are no unnecessary side stories. We’re drawn into Circe’s life; we’re privy to her thoughts… nothing is hidden from us. She’s far from perfect; she can be unreasonable, and gives in to her negative emotions, but I found her very easy to like.Although the focus of the story is all on Circe, we’re still treated to an astounding cast of characters – Scylla; Daedalus; Circe’s sister, Pasiphae, mother of the Minotaur; Medea; not to mention the Titans, gods and goddesses. And, last but by no means least, Penelope – another well-written woman, she quickly became my second favourite character.Ms Miller uses straightforward, simple words, yet her descriptions are lyrical and evocative, like her description of Helios’ halls, which also conveys something of the sun god’s nature…‘My father’s halls were dark and silent. His palace was… buried in the earth’s rock, and its walls were made of polished obsidian. Why not? They could have been anything in the world, blood-red marble from Egypt or balsam from Araby, my father had only to wish it so. But he liked the way the obsidian reflected his light, the way its slick surfaces caught fire as he passed. Of course, he did not consider how black it would be when he was gone. My father has never been able to imagine the world without himself in it.’I liked that her witch powers don’t appear to her in an instant; she has to put in the work and practice, practice, practice.Circe’s interactions with the other characters, especially Daedalus, Odysseus, her son, Telegonus, even Penelope and Telemachus are all richly told. In Ms Miller’s hands, they become real people, each one a distinct character, strong and memorable in their own way. The gods are portrayed as illogical and capricious, which is how the Ancient Greeks saw them, but they don’t come across as stereotypical or two-dimensional.Although a minor deity, Circe isn’t portrayed as an unattainable goddess. We get to know this remarkable woman extremely well because we’re allowed to share her most personal thoughts. For me, that’s what makes this book – we’re shown Circe as a woman, with the same needs, hopes, desires and dreams as humans.A scholar of the Classics, Madeline Miller knows her Greek mythology inside and out. She’s amassed all that’s out there about Circe and spun a very believable tale. I read this book slowly, not because it was difficult to read, but I was savouring every part of it; I did not want it to end. When I got to the ending, it made me cry; it was exactly how I’d wanted it to end.At the beginning of May, I was lucky enough to attend a talk at the British Museum with Madeline Miller, Bettany Hughes and Kamila Shamsie. Ms Miller said she’d wanted to reclaim Circe’s story; she wanted to bring the focus back to this very clever woman who had the wit to surpass Odysseus in their verbal sparring. I suppose one can say, if ‘The Odyssey’ was a man’s story then ‘Circe’ is the woman’s story of that same time including the ages before and after.
  • I loved the idea behind this book as I delved into the classics from an early age, and truly appreciated the myths and legends of ancient cultures. The author has obviously done much research, and there are parts of the story that are pure poetry.However, I found it jarring, to say the least, when phrases such as ‘ go get’ and ‘go fix’ – were constantly repeated throughout the book. These are just two examples of the ‘Americanisms’ that have crept in, albeit under the noses of the seemingly vast number of advisers and publishers who got the book published. Did they read the text?Details like this may seem unimportant, but to me they undermine the authenticity of the story and for that reason I can only award three stars.Olivia
  • Whether you’re peeling sprouts, washing the poodle or taking same for walk, Madeline Miller’s gripping take on the Circe myth will summon you back for a feisty grapple with the Greek gods who ‘find their fame’, we are told, ‘by proving what they can mar’. But Circe, daughter of Helios and the naiad Perse, is kept deliberately ambivalent, as fragile as the dittany she picks on Mt. Dicte, or as austere and powerful as one who can command the most potent of all the world’s poisons. Her exile for millennia on the island of Aiaia confines her to her herbs and witchcraft, transforming Odysseus’ men into swine, but also concocting salves, liniments and tinctures for ailments and injuries, including her own, when two of her fingers are crunched up by the Minotaur, her nephew. The scenes with Scylla are a grim delight to read, especially in the final encounter, but there is much else in this novel that goes beyond the scars and sinews of combat, and Miller’s craft never skirts over the tenderness of those ‘rare moments when another soul dips near yours, as stars once a year brush near the earth’.Facing off against the plaintive scenes of loss and abandonment are the withering parodies of the gods. Hermes passes over every quarter of the world like a wicked Alan Whicker, ‘picking up gossip as hems gather mud’ and Athena and Helios, in spite of all their swaggering nectar-dribbling lifestyles, are petty and pusillanimous in the end, leaving Circe to negotiate her exile as she sees fit. Her chutzpah when she defies the big cheeses will give you read-rage, so have some ice cubes handy!’We should,’ Miller’s Circe says, ‘take pleasure in the simple mending of the world’, and the message resonates ever more clearly as the narrative evolves. The abiding image that sticks is of Circe weaving at Dedalus’s loom, pulling threads and making amends as she goes. It’s a great read, so leave the sprouts alone for a while and open the doors into this mythical emporium of herbs and heroines. The poodle can wait too.
  • Trigger Warning for violence, rape and loss.Madeline Miller has now been added to my auto-buy author list as her books are amazing. This was a masterpiece and when I think about it the one word that comes to mind is beautiful. Utterly and stunningly beautiful and one of my favourite reads of the year.This book is a retelling of The Odyssey and follows the story of the witch Goddess Circe from her life living within halls of her father the Sun God and Titan Helios to her life of exile on Aiaia.This book is very character driven which is what I loved about it and I adored Circe as a character. As the book is so character driven we get a really deep insight in to Circe’s life, her thoughts and feelings, her relationships with her family and the other Gods, the mortals who come upon her island Daedalus, Odysseus. Her experiences of love, loss and loneliness and I loved every second of it. I also loved watching Circe learn what it means to be immortal and what it means to be a mother.Madeline Miller’s writing is phenomenal, it is so poetic and lyrical and I could have easily the whole book as it is so beautiful.Overall, this book is a complete masterpiece that I highly recommend and I gave it 5 out of 5 stars.
  • BOOK REVIEW: CIRCE by MADELINE MILLERTITLE: CIRCEAUTHOR: MADELINE MILLERPAGES: 352PUBLISHER: BLOOMSBURY PUBLISHINGISBN: 978-1526603333GENRE: MYTHOLOGYIF I COULD REVIEW IT IN A SINGLE LINE: The best money you’d ever spendTHE BLURB:In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe has neither the look nor the voice of divinity, and is scorned and rejected by her kin. Increasingly isolated, she turns to mortals for companionship, leading her to discover a power forbidden to the gods: witchcraft.When love drives Circe to cast a dark spell, wrathful Zeus banishes her to the remote island of Aiaia. There she learns to harness her occult craft, drawing strength from nature. But she will not always be alone; many are destined to pass through Circe’s place of exile, entwining their fates with hers. The messenger god, Hermes. The craftsman, Daedalus. A ship bearing a golden fleece. And wily Odysseus, on his epic voyage home.There is danger for a solitary woman in this world, and Circe’s independence draws the wrath of men and gods alike. To protect what she holds dear, Circe must decide whether she belongs with the deities she is born from, or the mortals she has come to love.Breathing life into the ancient world, Madeline Miller weaves an intoxicating tale of gods and heroes, magic and monsters, survival and transformation.THE REVIEW:I am not usually a fan of mythology reads but this particular book was so talked about on bookstagram that I knew I had to get my hands on it; and obviously was practically squeaking when I father gave it to me as one of my birthday presents.It is one of those reads that collectively makes the fam agree on a stellar rating. The Circe has been read and re read over the past couple of months by as many people as possible out there and has been reviewed by oh so many of us but none of the reviewing including this one can do justice entirely to the book because it has the most epic and novel and yet enticing background with plotlines that there ever has been. Circe is the daughter of Helios, the Sun God and Perse, a naiad and thus a goddess herself but with a catch that she is a nymph with no powers of her own in the initial years or so everyone thought, she suffered at the hands of her siblings. What no one knows is the that she is a powerful witch with a supreme power lying dormant in her. When situation asks for it she rises beyond and shows her true colors. She is a witch so powerful she turns a mortal into God out of her endearing affection and sheer will. Pharmaka or witchcraft is frowned upon by gods and hence Circe is exiled into the land of Aiaia to lead a solitary life and we go on a journey through her immortality.The true power of the book you may say is in the fact that Circe doesn’t just lead a solitary life but a life unparalleled to any other purely based on the fact that she answers to no one and her land is hers, everyone has to be there with her permission and she has no one to order her about. Madelline Miller the genius uses this story, the life of Circe to show case the faculty of feminism, estrangement and making the best of her life.I cannot put into words how much I fell in love with this book purely out of my admiration for the author to show case a story of an immortal not so important to many in the Greek mythology but yet with her very own strength, uniqueness, will power and above all the very ability to fight all odds.Also I thought this is worth mentioning I ordered the hardcover edition of the book and OH MY GOD is it pretty.Cover: 99/5Title: 5/5Characters: 5/5Language: 5/5Story: 5/5Writing and Presentation: 5/5Overall: 5/5; I can’t even tell you how much I loved the book.I voluntarily reviewed a copy for @thatbooknerdyouknow. This review is my own and hasn’t been influenced by anyone else.
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