We’ve selected a few of our favourite mythological retellings to sink your teeth into. With books, poems, films and art to admire we hope you enjoy losing yourself in the intoxicating stories of ancient Greece and Rome.


For refreshing Feminist retellings of the male-dominant Greek myths, be sure to have a look at Circe and The Silence of the Girls. Whilst Barker’s Silence of the Girls has been described as ‘a feminist Iliad’ Miller’s ‘Circe’ was shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2019. Both products of our times, we highly recommend these noteworthy novels.

For something classic – a collection of 15 letters composed by Ovid as if written by the jilted lovers of Greek and Roman mythology, ‘Heroides’ (the Heroines) is heartbreaking in its honesty.  Spine-tinglingly modern, with phrases like ‘counting days is a lover’s business’ and ‘I will mingle my words with your kisses’, the collection explores love and loss in their truest forms.


Pick of the Week! Song: “Orpheus with his lute made trees”

(from Henry VIII)
Orpheus with his lute made trees,
And the mountain tops that freeze,
Bow themselves when he did sing:
To his music plants and flowers
Ever sprung; as sun and showers
There had made a lasting spring.
Every thing that heard him play,
Even the billows of the sea,
Hung their heads, and then lay by.
In sweet music is such art,
Killing care and grief of heart
Fall asleep, or hearing, die.

More favourites…

Ithaka – C.P Cavaky 

A masterpiece reminding us that the journey is just as important as the destination.

Mrs Midas – Carol Ann Duffy

Perceptive, moving and modern, Duffy imagines the realities of the life as the wife of King Midas.

Prometheus – Lord Byron

A stirring account of the misunderstood mythical being.

Great Goddesses– Nikita Gill

A feminist re-writing of the stories of goddesses of ancient mythology.

Tales from Ovid – Ted Hughes 

A modern adaptation of Ovid’s Metamorphosis.


Orpheus, Jean Cocteau (1950)

The modernist polyglot Jean Cocteau takes the classic Greek myth of Orpheus and places it in Contemporary Paris… the result is both strange and spectacular. A poet follows his dead wife into the underworld, only to fall in love with Death…(we warned you it was strange)

And we know what you’re thinking…for those that want to go straight to the good stuff, it felt wrong to not include the cult classics Troy and Disney’s Hercules on our list. We couldn’t resist.

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