Pat Barker was born in Yorkshire and began her literary career in her forties, when she took a short writing course taught by Angela Carter. Encouraged by Carter to continue writing, she sent her fiction out. She has now published sixteen novels, including her masterful Regeneration Trilogy, been made a CBE for services to literature, and won the UK's highest literary honour, the Booker Prize. Her last novel, The Silence of the Girls, began the story of Briseis, the forgotten woman at the heart of one of the most famous war epics ever told. It was shortlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction, the Costa Novel Award and the Gordon Burn Prize, and won an Independent Bookshop Award 2019. The Women of Troy continues that story. Pat Barker lives in Durham.
In a novel filled with names from legend, Briseis stands tall as a
heroine: brave, smart and loyal. Barker's latest is a wonder. *
Publisher's Weekly *
This continuation of the Trojan woman's story feels like another victory for every person who was silenced by history, their story stolen from them * Refinery 29 *
A stirring adventure set amid a misogynist dystopia -- Anthony Cummins * The Observer *
Barker is at her best when she evokes Hecuba's grief on the shore, surrounded by a group of female slaves with the ruined city behind them... * TLS *
As a novelist, Barker has always looked on the world with the
combination of a cold eye and a sympathetic understanding. Her
characterisation is sharp, her sympathy deep. She extends it
even to the often brutal men.
Her overall achievement is to have taken one of the great myths of European history, something that has permeated Western culture for 3,000 years, and made something new and immediate of it. * i *
I'd still rather
read Barker's take on the gruesome
realities and costs of war - ancient
or modern - than any other novelist
out there. * The Daily Telegraph *
Merciless, stripped of
consoling beauty, impressively bleak.