If you don’t love Greek Mythology, you should. Yes, I just used playground reasoning. But really, how could you not? The stories are never-ending and it is so entertaining to learn how Ancient Greeks used creative storytelling to explain the world around them with such vibrant characters.
Of course, if you are already a lover of Greek Mythology, you probably know that besides anthologies of these stories or reading Homer’s The Iliad and The Odyssey, it is difficult to find novels based on the titans, gods, demigods, and the people who worshipped them.
So, without further ado, here is what I have been able to uncover in my endless search for Greek Mythology-based fiction!
1)Percy Jackson and the Olympians Series by Rick Riordan
The Percy Jackson Series is definitely worth reading if you are a lover of Harry Potter. No, there isn’t a school per se, but there is a cool camp where demigods learn what it takes to be god-like. Honestly, these books quickly became my favourite. I remember purchasing the first one, coming home, reading it, and immediately going out to buy the rest. The best part of this five book series — the story continues with a follow up series, Heroes of Olympus, where you get to fall in love with a whole new set of characters while still remaining faithful to Percy and his crew. The best of both worlds!
I will admit that I didn’t enjoy this book as much as I wanted to, but that is a blog for another time. Now, you may know that two movies were made based on the first two books, The Lightning Thief and The Sea of Monsters. As stand alone movies, not bad. As movies based on books I love, a tragedy. Nevertheless, word on the metaphorical street tells me that hope is not lost. There are talks of a TV series coming out! Let’s pray to the Gods that this time they do the books justice *Fingers crossed.*
2) The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
Where do I even begin with this book? It is easily in my top five. For those of you not familiar with the demigod Achilles, think of the battle of Troy (if that means you immediately think of the Brad Pitt movie with Orlando Bloom, Eric Bana, and a welcomed over abundance of abs, me too). Now, what I enjoyed most about this book is that while it is about Achilles, it is not written from his point-of-view. Instead, the story is told through Patroclus, an exiled prince sent to the court of King Peleus and his absolutely smokin’ hot son, Achilles.
For those of you who enjoy a bit of romance, you will definitely enjoy this book. We have Ancient Greek lore (full of recognizable and much loved mythological characters, like Chiron), kings and queens, war, friendship, and a love story between Patroclus and Achilles. Yes, you read that right. And let me tell you, if this book doesn’t make you cry, I don’t know what will!
3) Circe by Madeline Miller
Yes, you read that right. Here is another Madeline Miller book. When this book came out, I did a happy dance. I loved The Song of Achilles so much that I couldn’t wait to sink my literary teeth into this one. Circe is not only a gem of a book about a goddess I, personally, know very little about, but I was happy to discover its witchy vibes. Yes, witchy vibes. Circe happens to be the OG, baby. So, give your fellow witch a thumbs up by reading this incredibly well-written homage to her. She deserves more love! Nevertheless, I have to be honest that while this was a good book, it doesn’t shine a light on The Song of Achilles. I’d still recommend it, though!
Side Note: Madeline, if the stars happen to align and you find yourself reading this blog, please keep writing. I need more of this!
Side Note #2: Upon further research, I have discovered another one of Miller’s books entitled Galatea, a Greek myth I have only recently become familiar with. Obviously, I have added this to my TBR.
4) Greek Mythology Series by Stephen Fry
I really became interested in Greek Mythology when I was in high school. The problem I quickly encountered was trying to find a collection of stories that contained the well-known stories (coincidentally all my favourites) as well as a few new ones. It wasn’t until this past year that I finally got my hands on Mythos, which not only contains retellings of popular and not as popular Greek myths, but is done so by Stephen Fry — a god in his own right.
If you take my recommendation seriously and pick-up this book, you will love it. That being said, it doesn’t end there! Nothing makes me happier than finding out there are other books by the same author. Head to your local bookstore or library and get your greek-mythology loving-hands on Heroes! I’ll be starting this bad boy in the coming days.
Side Note: Gods, it just keeps getting better! A third book is set to come out late this year in the Fall all about Troy (again, think Brad Pitt)! Are you wondering if I will be pre-ordering this book? Do you even have to ask?
5) Lovely War by Julie Berry
For you romance lovers out there, this one’s for you. If there’s one word I would use to describe this book, it would be ‘sweet’. A multi-layered love story set during World War I (for you historical fiction enthusiasts, you know WWI doesn’t get as much attention as WWII) and told through the Greek gods (with appearances by Aphrodite, Ares, Hades, Apollo, and Hephaestus). The purpose of telling the story this way – to try to answer the age old question, why are love and war always drawn to one another.
If you want to know the answer, pick up this book! It’s such a refreshing way to tell a love story.
What do you think about this list? Please comment below with any other books you think we would enjoy! We are always open and ready for any and all recommendations.