Leah Sample, Staff Writer

Ancient tales have been inspiring stories for centuries. Anything from “Romeo and Juliet” to “Aladdin” have not been totally original ideas. They pull from past material. “The Song of Achilles” written by Madeline Miller follows this theme. Focusing on the relationship between the legendary hero Achilles and Patroclus, “The Song of Achilles” is basically fanfiction of “The Iliad.” The novel follows Patroclus through his adventures of childhood, love, and war. What starts as lighthearted story turns dark when the Trojan War hits. The duo is put to the test once they are forced to confront fate. Despite being a tale that many have heard before, Miller manages to make it her own story. One of the things I love most about “The Song of Achilles” is Miller’s style. She writes as if it poetry, as if it really is a song. One of my favorite examples is this: “In the darkness, two shadows, reaching through the hopeless, heavy dusk. Their hands meet, and light spills in a flood like a hundred golden urns pouring out of the sun.” Her words paint a picture, one aspect which makes this novel all the more stunning. What I love most about this novel is the humanity of it. With everything from gods to centaurs to troublesome destinies, the heart of the book is the relationship between the two main characters. “The Song of Achilles” has something we can all relate to, whether it be love, grief, or simply bossy parents. Just a head’s up to future readers: Being set in ancient Greece, “The Song of Achilles” is a tragedy. But let’s face it, all the best stories are.