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Circe
Cover of Circe
Circe
The International No. 1 Bestseller--Shortlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2019
SHORTLISTED FOR THE WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2019

Woman. Witch. Myth. Mortal. Outcast. Lover. Destroyer. Survivor. CIRCE.

In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. Circe is a strange child – not powerful and terrible, like her father, nor gorgeous and mercenary like her mother. Scorned and rejected, Circe grows up in the shadows, at home in neither the world of gods or mortals. But Circe has a dark power of her own: witchcraft. When her gift threatens the gods, she is banished to the island of Aiaia where she hones her occult craft, casting spells, gathering strange herbs and taming wild beasts. Yet a woman who stands alone will never be left in peace for long – and among her island's guests is an unexpected visitor: the mortal Odysseus, for whom Circe will risk everything.

So Circe sets forth her tale, a vivid, mesmerizing epic of family rivalry, love and loss – the defiant, inextinguishable song of woman burning hot and bright through the darkness of a man's world.

THE NUMBER ONE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER

CHOSEN AS A BOOK OF THE YEAR BY THE GUARDIAN, TELEGRAPH, SUNDAY TELEGRAPH, I PAPER, SUNDAY EXPRESS, IRISH TIMES, TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT, AMAZON, AUDIBLE, BUZZFEED, REFINERY 29, WASHINGTON POST, BOSTON GLOBE, SEATTLE TIMES, TIME MAGAZINE, NEWSWEEK, PEOPLE, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, KIRKUS, PUBLISHERS WEEKLY AND GOODREADS
SHORTLISTED FOR THE WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2019

Woman. Witch. Myth. Mortal. Outcast. Lover. Destroyer. Survivor. CIRCE.

In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. Circe is a strange child – not powerful and terrible, like her father, nor gorgeous and mercenary like her mother. Scorned and rejected, Circe grows up in the shadows, at home in neither the world of gods or mortals. But Circe has a dark power of her own: witchcraft. When her gift threatens the gods, she is banished to the island of Aiaia where she hones her occult craft, casting spells, gathering strange herbs and taming wild beasts. Yet a woman who stands alone will never be left in peace for long – and among her island's guests is an unexpected visitor: the mortal Odysseus, for whom Circe will risk everything.

So Circe sets forth her tale, a vivid, mesmerizing epic of family rivalry, love and loss – the defiant, inextinguishable song of woman burning hot and bright through the darkness of a man's world.

THE NUMBER ONE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER

CHOSEN AS A BOOK OF THE YEAR BY THE GUARDIAN, TELEGRAPH, SUNDAY TELEGRAPH, I PAPER, SUNDAY EXPRESS, IRISH TIMES, TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT, AMAZON, AUDIBLE, BUZZFEED, REFINERY 29, WASHINGTON POST, BOSTON GLOBE, SEATTLE TIMES, TIME MAGAZINE, NEWSWEEK, PEOPLE, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, KIRKUS, PUBLISHERS WEEKLY AND GOODREADS
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Awards-
About the Author-
  • Madeline Miller is the author of The Song of Achilles, which won the Orange Prize for Fiction 2012, was shortlisted for the Stonewall Writer of the Year 2012, was an instant New York Times bestseller, and was translated into twenty-five languages. Madeline holds an MA in Classics from Brown University, and she taught Latin, Greek and Shakespeare to high school students for over a decade. She has also studied at the University of Chicago's Committee on Social Thought, and at Yale School of Drama, where she focused on the adaptation of classical texts to modern forms. Her essays have appeared in publications including the Guardian, Wall Street Journal, Lapham's Quarterly and NPR.org. She lives outside Philadelphia.

    madelinemiller.com
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from February 5, 2018
    Miller follows her impressive debut (The Song of Achilles) with a spirited novel about Circe’s evolution from insignificant nymph to formidable witch best known for turning Odysseus’s sailors into swine. Her narrative begins with a description of growing up the awkward daughter of Helios, the sun god. She does not discover her gift for pharmakeia (the art of using herbs and spells) until she transforms her first love, a poor fisherman, into a god. When he rejects her in favor of vain Scylla, Circe turns Scylla into a sea monster. Now considered dangerous, Circe is exiled to an island, where she experiments with local flora and fauna. After returning from a visit to Crete to help her sister give birth to the Minotaur, Circe is joined on the island by errant nymphs sentenced to do their penance in her service. By the time Odysseus’s ship arrives, winding its way home from the Trojan War, Circe reigns over a prosperous household. Welcome guests enjoy her hospitality; unwelcome guests are turned into wild pigs. Neither the goddess Athena nor the deadliest poison known to man makes Circe flinch. Weaving together Homer’s tale with other sources, Miller crafts a classic story of female empowerment. She paints an uncompromising portrait of a superheroine who learns to wield divine power while coming to understand what it means to be mortal. Agent: Julie Barer, the Book Group.

  • Guardian, Books of the Year Enough magic, enchantment, voyages and wonders to satisfy the most jaded sword-and-sorcery palate. Miller approaches Odysseus's story from Circe's point of view, richly evoking her protagonist's overlapping identities as goddess, witch, lover and mother
  • Mail on Sunday In a thrilling tour de force of imagination, Miller makes her otherworldly heroine a complex, sympathetic figure for whom we cheer throughout. Circ e is a truly spellbinding novel, the mesmerising shimmer of ancient magic rising from it like a heat haze
  • Daily Telegraph A brilliantly strange work of mythic science fiction, as effortlessly expressive within the palaces of gods as it is about the world below ... Superb ... This is both a fabulous novel and a fascinating retelling; the best compliment, perhaps, that any myth could hope for
  • The Times, Books of the Year A triumph
  • Sunday Times Magazine Circe is poised to become the literary sensation of the summer, as much for the quality of its writing as its timeliness
  • Daily Telegraph, Books of the Year This year's novels were filled with the angry clamour of women's voices: ignored, idealistic or excitingly ambivalent. Madeline Miller reflected the mood for feminist revisionism with her lissom follow-up Circe, which casts the witch goddess in the Odyssey not as a bit player in a man's epic but as the star of her own show
  • Times Literary Supplement, Books of the Year It was a big year for creative retelling of myth and pre-modern literature; a favourite was Madeline Miller's Circe, a distinctive, lyrical novel about power, agency and reponsibility, from the point of view of this crafty, much-misunderstood goddess
  • Independent, Books of the Year The writing is lovely, the tone assured, and the touch just right
  • Mail on Sunday, 'Sizzling summer reads' The first witch in Western literature sets Homer straight as she tells her life story, from her unhappy childhood to her lonely island exile. The woman who emerges is complex and sympathetic. A spellbinding tour de force of imagination
  • Independent Miller has effected a transformation just as impressive as any of her heroine's own: she's turned an ancient tale of female subjugation into one of empowerment and courage full of contemporary resonances
  • Daily Mail, Books of the Summer 2018 What more could you wish for on holiday than this fabulously written re-imagining of the myth? Gods, monsters and mortals are lushly evoked in a page-turner that is as gripping as a soap opera and which triumphantly fuses myth with our contemporary concerns
  • Elle Magazine Dubbed the 'feminist Odyssey', there's so much to like about Circe. From the author of the much-loved The Song of Achilles, this novel puts a feminist spin on Greek mythology, recasting Circe, the vilified witch infamous for turning men into pigs, in a sympathetic light. Subverting the usual masculine tropes of epic adventure narratives, Miller tells the story of the women who have been historically silenced. And on top of that, she makes Greek myths and culture, which is often perceived as impenetrable and intimidating, accessible. A real page-turner
  • New York Times Illuminates known stories from a new perspective ... Miller has determined, in her characterization of this most powerful witch, to bring her as close as possible to the human, as a thoughtful and compassionate woman who learns to love unselfishly ... A highly psychologized, redemptive and ultimately exculpatory account of the protagonist herself
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Circe
Circe
The International No. 1 Bestseller--Shortlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2019
Madeline Miller
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