MLA Platinum Award Press Release

Reading guide for Circe by Madeline Miller

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Circe by Madeline Miller X
Circe by Madeline Miller
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Apr 2018, 400 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2020, 400 pages

    Genres

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Dean Muscat
Buy This Book

About this Book

Reading Guide Questions Print Excerpt

Please be aware that this discussion guide will contain spoilers!

  1. Circe struggles to find a place for herself as a woman in a man's world. What parts of her experience resonate with modern day challenges that women face?
  2. A central theme of Homer's Odyssey is a longing for "nostos"—homecoming. In what way does that theme resonate with Circe's story?
  3. How does Circe's encounter with Prometheus change her? How does it continue to affect her actions?
  4. Throughout the novel Circe draws distinctions between gods and mortals.  How does Glaucus change when he becomes a god?
  5. Circe wonders if parents can ever see their children clearly. She notes that so often when looking at our children "we see only the mirror of our own faults." What parts of herself does she see when she looks at Telegonus? What are her strengths and weaknesses as a parent to him?
  6. Circe's sister Pasiphaë begins the novel as a major antagonist. How does our perspective of her change after Circe's visit to Crete?
  7. How does her time with Daedalus affect Circe?
  8. Circe begins the novel feeling very close to her brother Aeëtes. Why do their paths diverge so wildly? Why do you think he make the choices he does?
  9. Circe tells us that she recognizes parts of herself in Medea. In what ways are the two women similar? In what ways are they different?
  10. Circe says to Telemachus "Do not try to take my regret from me." What does she mean by that? What role does regret play in the novel?
  11. Circe says that when she first meets Odysseus he seems "nearly familiar" to her. Why does she say that? Who, if anyone, does he remind her of?
  12. What is the significance of Circe's meeting with Trygon? How does it impact her emotional journey?
  13. There are numerous references to crafts in the novel, including weaving, carpentry and metal-working. What role does craft play in Circe's story?
  14. Circe is interested in Penelope from the moment she hears about her from Odysseus. What draws her to Penelope? Does this change over time?
  15. Were you surprised when Telemachus refused Athena? Why or why not?
  16. Circe encounters several famous figures from Greek myth. Were any of their portrayals surprising?
  17. How does Circe's relationship with her father change over the course of the book? What do you make of their final conversation?
  18. We see numerous powerful characters abusing their positions throughout the story. Are power and abuse necessarily connected? Are there any models for power without cruelty in the novel?
  19. Circe's gift is transformation. How does she transform from the beginning of the novel to the end? Why does she ultimately choose the path she does?

From madelinemiller.com

Unless otherwise stated, this discussion guide is reprinted with the permission of Back Bay Books. Any page references refer to a USA edition of the book, usually the trade paperback version, and may vary in other editions.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for a year or $39 for 3 months
  • More about membership!

Beyond the Book:
  Nymphs in Greek Mythology

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten.

Join Now!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Death in Mud Lick
    Death in Mud Lick
    by Eric Eyre
    When Eric Eyre, investigative and statehouse reporter for the Charleston Gazette-Daily, began ...
  • Book Jacket
    Orange World and Other Stories
    by Karen Russell
    Karen Russell has a tremendous gift for crafting uncanny, through-the-looking glass worlds that are ...
  • Book Jacket: The Book of Longings
    The Book of Longings
    by Sue Monk Kidd
    The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd follows the life of Ana, a woman born in the Galilean city of ...
  • Book Jacket: Master Class
    Master Class
    by Christina Dalcher
    Christina Dalcher's Master Class shows America sleepwalking into a perfectionist eventuality not ...

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Daughter of the Reich
    by Louise Fein

    A spellbinding story of impossible love set against the backdrop of the Nazi regime.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Prisoner's Wife
    by Maggie Brookes

    Inspired by the true story of a courageous young woman who enters a Nazi POW camp to be with the man she loves.
    Reader Reviews

Book Club Discussion
Book Jacket
The Paris Hours
by Alex George

One day in the City of Light. One night in search of lost time.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win The House on Fripp Island

The House on Fripp Island
by Rebecca Kauffman

A taut, page-turning novel of secrets and strife.

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

B I T T Water

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.