Skip to main content



The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood

Little Miss Ugly DuckThe Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood is a retelling of Homer's Odyssey from the point of view of Penelope, Odysseus's wife.  She tells the story of her marriage from the afterlife, and regrets the violent deaths of her twelve maids.
Story  ☆☆★★★ When I was about eight years old, my Dad decided it would be a good idea to read me The Odyssey as a bedtime story.  From this ambitious plan, I only remember Penelope and her clever idea of refusing to marry one of her many suitors until she had finished weaving a shroud for her father-in-law.  Every night she unpicks her work, so the shroud will never be finished, and she won't have to marry any of the rowdy, rude men that squat in her house.
This is the crux of Atwood's story, although she charts the majority of Penelope's life, from her father throwing her into the sea as an infant, to her wanderings through the afterlife, encountering various figures she knew.  A lot of attention is paid to the weddi…

Latest posts

A Head Full of Ghosts by Paul Tremblay

June Recommendations

The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell

Bird Box by Josh Malerman

You Don't Know Me by Imran Mahmood

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

May Recommendations

Margaret Atwood at Hay Festival

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

The Courage Consort by Michel Faber