Circe

Madeline Miller’s bestselling novel Circe is this year’s NEA Big Read: Wichita selection. This novel, about the lesser-known goddess Circe, takes you on a spellbinding journey into the world of gods, monsters, mortals, and nymphs. Circe is a strange child — not powerful, like her father Helios, nor alluring like her mother Perse, and often ridiculed by her beautiful and charismatic siblings. Most authors, like Homer and Ovid, depict Circe as weak or evil and lacking nuance, but Miller reimagines her as a complex, “‘passionately empathetic and strong-willed woman’ determined to find her own path and evolve” (Girls’ Night In). Turning to the world of mortals for companionship, she discovers that she does possess power — the power of potions and spells, which can transform rivals into monsters and menace the gods themselves.

From October 1-November 15, the world of Circe will come to life in Wichita through book discussions, special programs, and performances based on the book’s characters, settings, and themes.

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