Check It Out: Circe by Madeline Miller

Apr 2, 2019

This is Jessi Wakefield from the Sioux City Public Library and you’re listening to Check It Out.

Today I would like to recommend a book that has swept across the literary world last year and left an indelible mark on those who read it. Chosen and the best book of 2018 by readers from many places including the Book of the Month Club and Goodreads.com, I would like to share my impressions on Madeline Miller’s divine novel Circe. In the pantheon of Greek Mythology with all its gods, goddesses, and Titans sits a lesser known, lesser powered character of Circe, daughter of Helios the god of the Sun. Circe is not powerful, or beautiful, or vicious like others in her father’s house. She is scorned for her seemingly weakness, and an embarrassment to her father. 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. Her strange power threatens the Titans and gods alike, and she is banished from her home, to the deserted island of Aeaea (A-ee-ah). There she hones her skills and becomes incredibly powerful. Despite her banishment, she is still able to cross paths with characters such as Hermes, Icarus, the Minotaur, and the epic hero himself, Odysseus. 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. Miller’s writing is beautiful, but never superficially so. She brings such a quiet humanity to the gods and goddesses she portrays, most of all to our main character, Circe. Much like her first book, The Song of Achilles, Miller weaves mythology and poignant prose beautifully to create a truly award-winning novel. Visit the Sioux City Public Library and check out Circe by Madeline Miller.

Support for Check It Out comes from Avery Brothers.