WICE Bilingual Book Group
11 June 2021
2:00 PM - 3:30 PM (UTC+02:00)
Registration Opens May 15, 2021
The historical record shows that Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway had a son named Hamnet, who died in 1596 at the age of 11. This is almost all we know, along with the fact that his name also inspired the title of one of the most celebrated plays ever written. Maggie O’Farrell takes these scant strands and weaves them into an entrancing fictional tapestry of life and death in Tudor England -- a backdrop of religious wars, blood and death, with Shakespeare in the forefront. Many have acclaimed her as a novelist with an extraordinary understanding of grief, tenderness and passion.
‘This novel is at once about the transfiguration of life into art — it is O’Farrell’s extended speculation on how Hamnet’s death might have fueled the creation of one of his father’s greatest plays — and at the same time, it is a master class in how she, herself, does it.’ New York Times.
‘Twenty years after publishing her contemporary fiction debut, O’Farrell makes a dramatic shift to historical fiction in Hamnet, and it is her finest work yet. She is a spellbinding word-weaver, conjuring up a vivid historical milieu that is at once familiar and surreal in its immediacy.’ The Literary Review.
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