Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell
“Maggie O’Farrell’s first historical novel is quite simply, a triumph. She brings the emotional world of Shakespeare’s imagined family life vividly to life. At times, it is almost too raw to read, but you can’t look away. Definitely one to re-read if only to marvel at her ability to conjure the emotional intensity with such elegance.” Rosamund
11 in stock
‘Immersive, at times shockingly intimate… ought to win prizes’ Guardian
‘A masterpiece. Historical fiction at its finest’ Stacey Halls
TWO EXTRAORDINARY PEOPLE. A LOVE THAT DRAWS THEM TOGETHER. A LOSS THAT THREATENS TO TEAR THEM APART.
On a summer’s day in 1596, a young girl in Stratford-upon-Avon takes to her bed with a fever. Her twin brother, Hamnet, searches everywhere for help. Why is nobody at home? Their mother, Agnes, is over a mile away, in the garden where she grows medicinal herbs. Their father is working in London. Neither parent knows that one of the children will not survive the week.
Hamnet is a novel inspired by the son of a famous playwright. It is a story of the bond between twins, and of a marriage pushed to the brink by grief. It is also the story of a kestrel and its mistress; flea that boards a ship in Alexandria; and a glovemaker’s son who flouts convention in pursuit of the woman he loves. Above all, it is a tender and unforgettable reimagining of a boy whose life has been all but forgotten, but whose name was given to one of the most celebrated plays ever written.