A Thousand Ships: A Novel (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews

This novel draws on all the ancient sources that recount or mention the women of the Iliad or the Odyssey. Fierce in tone (yet modern) the voices of the women and their stories are vivid and wondrously drawn. The story of each of the women rings with clarity and the truth of war. Women whether victim, survivor or somewhere in between are just as heroic as any warrior or king. A Thousand Ships belongs on the shelf with Miller's Circe. I loved it. — Maeve Noonan

A retelling of the infamous Trojan War, but from the perspective of the women who lived it, be they goddesses, nymphs, Amazons, Greeks or Trojan. A Thousand Ships presents itself as an anthology of Greek myths that are well-connected and characterized, although not chronologically told, which at times made the narrative a bit confusing. Some of my favorite chapters were from the perspective of Calliope, the muse, who overtakes Homer’s leading role by denying him the ability to compose his epic poem. A great read for any fans of mythology retellings or historical fiction! — Kirstin Swartz

February 2021 Indie Next List

“From The Aeneid to The Iliad and The Odyssey, classic stories of the Trojan War are implicitly reliant on the role of women, however reticent they are portrayed. Finally — finally! — we have a retelling that does women, girls, and goddesses justice. Through the perspective of women in various places and times during the war, Natalie Haynes constructs an epic collage that follows the warriors, refugees, oracles, muses, wives, and daughters of Troy, Greece, and beyond in one of the most famous conflicts in world history.”
— Cat Chapman, The Oxford Exchange, Tampa, FL



“Gorgeous.... 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

Shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, a gorgeous retelling of the Trojan War from the perspectives of the many women involved in its causes and consequences—for fans of Madeline Miller.

This is the women’s war, just as much as it is the men’s. They have waited long enough for their turn . . .

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 whose lives, loves, and rivalries were forever altered by this long and tragic war. 

A woman’s epic, powerfully imbued with new life, A Thousand Ships puts the women, girls and goddesses at the center of the Western world’s great tale ever told.

About the Author

Natalie Haynesis the author of six books and has written and recorded six series of Natalie Haynes Stands Up for the Classics for the BBC. Natalie has written for the Times, the Independent, the Guardian, and the Observer. She lives in London.

Praise For…

"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

"Savvy and well plotted.… Haynes’s inventiveness in conjuring the lives of Greek and Trojan women through… evocative details keeps the novel humming."
New York Times Book Review

“Absorbing and fiercely feminist . . . this subversive re-seeing of the classics is a many-layered delight.”

“A witty, unapologetically feminist story of women’s suffering, courage, and endurance… Haynes' freshly modern version of an ancient tale is perfect for our times.”

“An enthralling reimagining of the lives of women from both Troy and Greek culture. . . . Haynes shines by twisting common perceptions of the Trojan War and its aftermath in order to capture the women’s experiences.”
Publishers Weekly

“Clever and entertaining.”
Times, UK

“Haynes is master of her trade . . . She succeeds in breathing warm life into some of our oldest stories.”
Telegraph, UK

“Haynes is master of her trade . . . She succeeds in breathing warm life into some of our oldest stories.”
Telegraph, UK

“This lively reinvention [of the Trojan War] is worth the journey.”
Library Journal

Product Details
ISBN: 9780063065390
ISBN-10: 0063065398
Publisher: Harper
Publication Date: January 26th, 2021
Pages: 368
Language: English
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