A Thousand Ships
Shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2020
One of the Guardian’s and TLS’s ‘Best Books of 2019’
In A Thousand Ships, broadcaster and classicist Natalie Haynes retells the story of the Trojan War from an all-female perspective, for fans of Madeline Miller and Pat Barker.
This was never the story of one woman, or two. It was the story of them all . . .
In the middle of the night, a woman wakes to find her beloved city engulfed in flames. Ten seemingly endless years of conflict between the Greeks and the Trojans are over. Troy has fallen.
From the Trojan women whose fates now lie in the hands of the Greeks, to the Amazon princess who fought Achilles on their behalf, to Penelope awaiting the return of Odysseus, to the three goddesses whose feud started it all, these are the stories of the women embroiled in the legendary war.
Powerfully told from an all-female perspective, in A Thousand Ships Natalie Haynes puts the women, girls and goddesses at the centre of the story.
‘With her trademark passion, wit, and fierce feminism, Natalie Haynes gives much-needed voice to the silenced women of the Trojan War’ – Madeline Miller, author of Circe
‘A gripping feminist masterpiece’ – Deborah Frances-White, The Guilty Feminist
Haynes is the nation's great muse, and her latest retelling of the story of Troy told from the perspective of Helen and the women of The Iliad is beautiful -- Adam Rutherford * The Week * Haynes expertly crafts an emotional and vivid historical tale with high stakes and female empowerment at its core * Woman's Own * If you are new to myths, then this is a learned, well-fashioned introduction, with many shining moments of subtle power * Spectator * Haynes takes the baton from Renault and runs with it. Her modern take on antiquity is exquisitely informed without ever being research-heavy . . . Glorious! -- Damien Barr This subversive reseeing of the classics is a many-layered delight * Guardian * Breathtaking . . . Her writing isn't merely clever, or elegant, or (at times) extremely funny - though it is all of those things. It's also viscerally vivid. -- Catherine Nixey Here, in this treat of a book, the women take centre stage - and how brilliantly . . . Natalie Haynes brings them to witty, lyrical, scintillating life . . . A book to both savour and devour -- Suzannah Lipscomb A joy to read: fast paced, cracking with emotion and tension -- Professor Michael Scott Elegant, intelligent . . . Haynes combines a wide-ranging knowledge of the original myths with a gift for compelling narrative * The Times * The forgotten women are vividly brought to life in this moving, intelligent and witty book -- Martha Kearney, BBC Radio 4 Absorbing and fiercely feminist * Guardian * Haynes is master of her trade . . . She succeeds in breathing warm life into some of our oldest stories * Telegraph * Natalie Haynes is swiftly becoming this generation's Mary Renault; her retelling of the Trojan war from an all-female perspective, A Thousand Ships, is her best yet. * Observer * With her trademark passion, wit, and fierce feminism, Haynes gives much-needed voice to the silenced women of the Trojan War. Her thoughtful portraits will linger with you long after the book is finished -- Madeline Miller, author of Circe A gripping feminist masterpiece -- Deborah Frances-White, The Guilty Feminist
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