Book of the month

Each month, staff and students of the English Seminar introduce books they enjoyed and wish to recommend. If you'd like to post your favourite book, please write to

May 2019

The Silence of the GirlsLena Linne recommends Pat Barker’s The Silence of the Girls (2018): “In this recent novel, Barker returns to the very origins of European literature: Homer’s Iliad and the tenth year of the Trojan War. The Iliad is a heroic epic about Achilles’ wrath and its disastrous effects on the Greek military campaign. In The Silence of the Girls, Barker provides the Trojan woman Briseis with the chance to tell her version of the events. As the novel’s first-person narrator, Briseis accounts for her encounter with Achilles, for her capture and for her life as Achilles’ and Agamemnon’s war prize in the Greek camp. Her story looks behind the shiny façade of the heroic epic, drawing a vivid picture of the atrocities committed on both sides of this war in a world that is utterly patriarchal.”