The Women of Troy
The Women of Troy
Troy has fallen. The Greeks have won their bitter war. They can return home victors, loaded with their spoils: their stolen gold, stolen weapons, stolen women. All they need is a good wind to lift their sails. But the wind does not come. The gods have been offended – the body of Priam lies desecrated, unburied – and so the victors remain in limbo, camped in the shadow of the city they destroyed, pacing at the edge of an unobliging sea. And, in these empty, restless days, the hierarchies that held them together begin to fray, old feuds resurface and new suspicions fester. Largely unnoticed by her squabbling captors, Briseis remains in the Greek encampment. She forges alliances where she can – with young, dangerously naive Amina, with defiant, aged Hecuba, with Calchus, the disgraced priest – and begins to see the path to a kind of revenge.
THE SUNDAY TIMES NUMBER ONE BESTSELLER
The perfect Christmas gift for fans of The Silence of the Girls, Pat Barker continues her extraordinary retelling of one of our greatest myths.
'Myth for a MeToo age. Pat Barker returns to Homer in this gory but unexpectedly uplifting novel' Sunday Times
Troy has fallen. The Greeks have won their bitter war. They can return home as victors - all they need is a good wind to lift their sails. But the wind has vanished, the seas becalmed by vengeful gods, and so the warriors remain in limbo - camped in the shadow of the city they destroyed, kept company by the women they stole from it.
The women of Troy.
Helen - poor Helen. All that beauty, all that grace - and she was just a mouldy old bone for feral dogs to fight over.
Cassandra, who has learned not to be too attached to her own prophecies. They have only ever been believed when she can get a man to deliver them.
Stubborn Amina, with her gaze still fixed on the ruined towers of Troy, determined to avenge the slaughter of her king.
Hecuba, howling and clawing her cheeks on the silent shore, as if she could make her cries heard in the gloomy halls of Hades. As if she could wake the dead.
And Briseis, carrying her future in her womb: the unborn child of the dead hero Achilles. Once again caught up in the disputes of violent men. Once again faced with the chance to shape history.
Masterful and enduringly resonant, ambitious and intimate, The Women of Troy continues Pat Barker's extraordinary retelling of one of our greatest classical myths, following on from the critically acclaimed The Silence of the Girls.
'Readers turn to Barker's novels for their plain truths and clear-eyed sense of our history and creation stories. But the sombre clarity of her writing is offset by a luminous wisdom' Sunday Times
'The Women Of Troy's immediate beauty is its accessibility and Barker's precise, elegant writing' Metro
'Barker has always looked on the world with the combination of a cold eye and a sympathetic understanding. Her characterisation is sharp, her sympathy deep' ipaper