Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
CIRCE by Madeline Miller retells the story of the mythological witch of Aiaia and she does it superbly. Anyone writing about witches, especially re-creating famous or infamous witches from history or mythology, pretty much has me on board.
There was so much I liked about this story from the beautiful and evocative writing, the weaving of multiple Greek mythologies within Circe’s tale, and undoing the evil witch image as she is portrayed in mythology. Miller thrusts us into the cruel, narcissistic, and self-absorbed world of the Greek immortals and shows us Circe’s beginnings in it, her need to fit in, be accepted, and loved. We watch as she grows from a naive nymph, to a young woman questioning her world and the world of mortals, to a powerful woman and witch to be reckoned with. We experience her first brush with love, betrayals, heart break, fears, and rejection. I didn’t really get into the book until the middle when Circe faces motherhood. To me that’s when the book began to captivate me. To see her fears and uncertainty of motherhood, to protecting her child from a Goddess more powerful then her, to learning to let him go. It was poignant and the most emotional part out of the whole book.
Circe is story about one woman’s life, discovering her she truly is and finding her own self worth and power within herself. Miller does a wonderful job fleshing out a compassionate heroine who questions what it means to be immortal and searching for her true place in the world.