16 December 2013

The Song of Achilles

Achilles the Greatest of Greek Heroes... we have all heard of him, thru the famous phrase of Achilles Heel or as Brad Pitt in the film Troy.

But this book is not about it, neither it is about the War of Troy, or Greek history. It's a plain and simple love story between Achilles and Patroclus. Their friendship, their love, their childhood, their sensibilities, their relationship troubled by the society, politics, kingdoms, prophecy, power and war.

The subject of love between two men has been handled very beautifully by the author, she makes it work as a True love would. The True love that bleeds for the other, beats for another and dies for another. The craving for glory and parental acceptance against the dictates of society and call of true heart. How love and pride makes and breaks humans, the desire for glory and honor against the desire for true love. The choice of short life with fame or long life of no name.

There were many moments in the book which made me think of the dilemmas, the choices and the decisions we face. It's never that simple and fair. The glory of one is at the fall of another, the victory of one is at failure of another, the choice of one is at the sacrifice of another.

Their love at times seemed too perfect, but then all unrequited love is generally always perfect. In their case the death was lurking at every corner and they just wanted to love each other till it found them.

The book was well written and well researched. The author does a fair job creating the image of Patroclus, who was not known as a great warrior applauded for bravery or diplomacy or fighting skills, but still he was a more of a man in the world of glorious men and bloody war.

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