Review: A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes

Posted August 13, 2020 by Stephanie in Reviews / 4 Comments

Title: A Thousand Ships
Author: Natalie Haynes
Publication: May 2nd 2019 by Mantle
Genre: Historical Fiction, Mythology, Retelling
Purchase it on: Amazon | Book Depository | Google Play
Rating: 4/5

This was never the story of one woman, or two. It was the story of all of them…

In the middle of the night, Creusa wakes to find her beloved Troy engulfed in flames. Ten seemingly endless years of brutal conflict between the Greeks and the Trojans are over, and the Greeks are victorious. Over the next few hours, the only life she has ever known will turn to ash . . .

The devastating consequences of the fall of Troy stretch from Mount Olympus to Mount Ida, from the citadel of Troy to the distant Greek islands, and across oceans and sky in between. These are the stories of the women embroiled in that legendary war and its terrible aftermath, as well as the feud and the fatal decisions that started it all…

Powerfully told from an all-female perspective, A Thousand Ships gives voices to the women, girls and goddesses who, for so long, have been silent.

In A Thousand Ships, broadcaster and classicist Natalie Haynes retells the story of the Trojan War from an all-female perspective.

I’m a sucker for any retellings featuring the Trojan War and its aftermath. Especially when it features the women that are often overlooked and that it’s written by a female author is another bonus on top of that. This book was just a joy to read.

Retelling the fall of Troy is quite an extraordinary task so I will always be in awe of the authors that not only manage it but also end up amazing me with their writing. I know the this story pretty well, if I say so myself, so it’s always pretty amazing to learn or find out new things in these age-old mythologies. And Natalie Haynes definitely did that.

I loved literally every single chapter in this book but one of my top favorites was Penelope’s chapter. I loved her chapters so much because they were told as a letter to Odysseus while he was away for those twenty years. They were written so well and I couldn’t get enough of those particular chapter.

I don’t know what more I can say about this beautifully written book but I think that if you enjoyed Circe by Madeline Miller, then you will definitly like A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes. I sure did.


About the author:
Natalie Haynes, author of THE FURIES (THE AMBER FURY in the UK), is a graduate of Cambridge University and an award-winning comedian, journalist, and broadcaster. She judged the Man Booker Prize in 2013 and was a judge for the final Orange Prize in 2012. Natalie was a regular panelist on BBC2’s Newsnight Review, Radio 4’s Saturday Review, and the long-running arts show, Front Row. She is a guest columnist for the The Independent and The Guardian. Her radio series, Natalie Haynes Stands Up for the Classics, was first broadcast in March 2014.
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