The Silence of the Girls

The Silence of the Girls : Shortlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2019

3.88 (12,229 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Shorlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction and the Costa Novel Award

Booker-winning novelist Pat Barker imagines the untold story of the women at the heart of history's greatest epic

'Magnificent... You are in the hands of a writer at the height of her powers' Evening Standard

'Chilling, powerful, audacious... A searing twist on The Iliad. Amid the recent slew of rewritings of the great Greek myths and classics, Barker's stands out for its forcefulness of purpose and earthy compassion' The Times

'A stunning return to form' Observer

There was a woman at the heart of the Trojan war whose voice has been silent - till now...

Briseis was a queen until her city was destroyed. Now she is slave to Achilles, the man who butchered her husband and brothers. Trapped in a world defined by men, can she survive to become the author of her own story?

Discover the greatest Greek myth of all - retold by the witness history forgot.

'Make[s] you reflect on the cultural underpinnings of misogyny, the women throughout history who have been told by men to forget their trauma... You are in the hands of a writer at the height of her powers' Evening Standard

Praise for Pat Barker:

'Barker delves unflinchingly into the enduring mysteries of human motivation' Sunday Telegraph

'She is not only a fine chronicler of war but of human nature' Independent

'Barker is a writer of crispness and clarity and an unflinching seeker of the germ of what it means to be human' Herald

'You go to her for plain truths, a driving storyline and a clear eye, steadily facing the history of our world' Guardian
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Product details

  • Paperback | 336 pages
  • 155 x 235 x 25mm | 415g
  • Hamish Hamilton Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0241338093
  • 9780241338094
  • 3,184

Review Text

A stunning return to form Observer
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Review quote

The magic of Barker's book is that the resonance of giving silenced women a voice at the centre of the story is just as relevant today * Grazia * The most important novel based on The Iliad so far this century * Edith Hall * Giving voice to the voiceless, this is a gripping feat of imagination that succeeds in being relevant today * Woman and Home * An impressive feat of literary revisionism that should be on the Man Booker longlist... This is a story about the very real cost of wars waged by men... Barker makes us re-think history * Independent * She gives a voice to the voiceless...The Silence of the Girls is a book that will be read in generations to come * Daily Telegraph * An important, powerful, memorable book that invites us to look differently not only at The Iliad but at our own ways of telling stories about the past and the present, and at how anger and hatred play out in our societies * Guardian * An assured triumph * Sunday Times * Its magnificent final section can't help but make you reflect on the cultural underpinnings of misogyny, the women throughout history who have been told by men to forget their trauma... You are in the hands of a writer at the height of her powers * Evening Standard * Angry, thoughtful, sad, deeply humane and compulsively readable, The Silence of the Girls shows that 36 years after her first novel was published, Barker is a writer at the peak of her powers * Irish Times * A stunning return to form * Observer * A searing twist on The Iliad... Amid the recent slew of rewritings of the great Greek myths and classics, Barker's stands out for its forcefulness of purpose and earthy compassion... Chilling, powerful, audacious * The Times *
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About Pat Barker

Pat Barker was born in Yorkshire and began her literary career in her forties, when she took a short writing course taught by Angela Carter. Encouraged by Carter to continue writing and exploring the lives of working class women, she sent her fiction out to publishers. Thirty-five years later, she has published fifteen novels, including her masterful Regeneration Trilogy, been made a CBE for services to literature, and won awards including the Guardian Fiction Prize and the UK's highest literary honour, the Booker Prize. She lives in Durham and her latest novel is The Silence of the Girls.
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Rating details

12,229 ratings
3.88 out of 5 stars
5 27% (3,333)
4 42% (5,155)
3 24% (2,892)
2 5% (651)
1 2% (198)
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