My Thoughts on “Circe” by Madeline Miller

Good afternoon everyone,

I hope that you’re all having a great start to the day!

A couple of weeks ago, I finished reading “Circe” by Madeline Miller, and what a book it turned out to be! In today’s blog, we are going to be taking a look at some of my thoughts & opinions about the book – let’s get into it!

Hello & Welcome to Sweeney’s Blogs!

Circe is a Goddess of Magic in Greek Mythology – the daughter of the Sun God Helios & the Oceanid Nymph Perse.

Circe is often depicted as a villain/ evil goddess in the majority of Greek-inspired literature, however, Madeline Miller decides to take a different stance on the character, and offers us a more human representation of the deity. I feel like Miller created a much more connectable & relatable character in her book, and helps portray the speculated trials & tribulations of Circe’s life in a more neutral & understandable manner.

The book, as I’m sure you can guess from the title, follows the life of Circe, from her birth all the way through to her eventual death – while divine beings like Circe are not commonly known for dying, the events of the book help influence the decision that Circe makes towards the end of the story.

A Statue of Circe

The book helps talk us through each of the famous stages of Circe’s life – from her transformation of Scylla, which eventually led to her banishment to the island of Aiaiai, to her relationships with her siblings (Aeetes, Pasiphae & Perses), from her involvement in the story of the Minotaur & connection to Daedalus to her eventual meeting with the famous figures of Greek mythology, including Jason & Odysseus (Odysseus & his family play a very big role in the book).

Although Circe is the ‘protagonist’ of the book, Miller writes the story in a way which portrays a vast number of the different aspects of her personality – she shows that Circe is a character who can make mistakes, she’s not this divine being who can do no wrong, her mistakes stay with her & shape her into the character that we get to watch grow throughout the story.

Miller writes the character of Circe as if she was a real person, she shows the love & devotion that she has to her son, the jealousy & rage that she feels towards Scylla, the courage that she has to stand up to her father & so much more. I loved the development that the book showed as the story progressed, you felt as if you could relate to & feel everything that the characters were feeling throughout the tale.

I’ve had the book on my shelf for a while now, and as soon as I started to read it, I could not put the book down. I absolutely flew through the book & loved every minute of it. Madeline Miller took a traditional character from Greek Mythology, added a modern spin to her & made a masterpiece in the process.

I would highly recommend reading this book – you don’t even need to know anything about Greek Mythology beforehand, Miller talks you through it all throughout the book. If you end up loving this book too, then you’ve got to read through “The Song of Achilles” by Madeline Miller as well. If anything, I would recommend that you read “The Song of Achilles” first, as it helps provide some extra depth to Odysseus’s character, and why he acts in the way that he does.

Well then, that’s another book off of the list! You cannot beat fictional stories & stories based on mythology & folklore 🙂

That’s all for today’s blog, what do you think? What sort of books have you enjoyed reading lately? Would you like to see some more book-themed blogs on the page?

Thanks for reading & I hope you have a lovely day!

Sweeney’s Blogs

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James Sweeney

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