A Book & A Beer – Circe

When I was in Portland, my wife was lent this book by my Mom, and I decided to read it too. It is Circe by Madeline Miller.

This tale follows Circe a daughter of Helios, the God of the Sun and a Titans. Circe is a strange and not like the other children of Titans. Nothing like her parents either. She has the power of witchcraft.

It is a book that puts the narrative into Circe’s point of view. You see how she reacts to the day-to-day activities of her fellow Titans and the Gods as well. Most of the book finds her banished to a deserted island where she deals with visitors who mostly interrupt her peace. Most get turned into pigs.

This is one of those books where having a list of characters at the back is very helpful. My college days reading of Greek tragedies only took me so far. I have a predilection for stories told by a not major character elsewhere. It fleshes the world out and you gain new insight on people you think you know but you really only know from their narrative.

For beer, I would look for beers with either botanicals such as juniper, sage and the like to represent the ingredients for many of Circe’s spells or look for a wine barrel-aged sour beer because there is a lot of sour grapes between parent and child, between siblings, between sea creatures and sailors and practically everyone in this book.