Still too much focus on the men...
I've taken a little time to decide on what to write about this book. That's because I was expecting something from the book that I didn't get, and I didn't want my judgement to be clouded,
However, I'm still irked that the book gives up so much time to Achilles and Patroclus, as we've heard their story a thousand times over. I expected more from Briseis as a narrator, and from the other women, and had hoped that Pat Barker would give them the voice they didn't have in The Iliad.
Now that I've thought about the book for a period of time, I'm ready to give it 3 stars.
It's beautifully written, and it does drag the reader through the emotional wringer.
There's a great deal of focus on how the horror of war affects the women, and less time is given over to the descriptions of battles and fighting that we're used to.
But it still focuses too much on Achilles for me.
The most poignant part of the book for me, is when Priam comes to Achilles to beg for the body of his son Hector, which is telling as we're back to having the story of the men of The Iliad told again.
I just feel like I can't give this more than three stars as there's not much new, and I can't imagine I'll want to read it again.