Hamnet

Hamnet

4.37 (16,153 ratings by Goodreads)
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WINNER OF THE 2020 WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION - THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER
SHORTLISTED AN POST BOOK AWARDS IRISH NOVEL OF THE YEAR
'Richly sensuous... something special' The Sunday Times
'A thing of shimmering wonder' David Mitchell

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.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 384 pages
  • 164 x 242 x 36mm | 637g
  • Tinder Press
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1472223799
  • 9781472223791
  • 1,452

Review quote

A glorious novel... extraordinary * Roddy Doyle * A staggeringly beautiful and unbearably poignant novel. O'Farrell is one of the most surprisingly quiet radicals in fiction * Scotsman * The novel of her career... everyone I know who has managed to get hold of a copy is absolutely in love with it * Observer * Richly sensuous...something special * Sunday Times * A bold undertaking. Beautifully imagined and written * Claire Tomalin * A beautiful read. A devastating one. Intricate, and breathtakingly imaginative * Rachel Joyce * [A] rich imagining of the lives of Shakespeare's family enchants... O'Farrell's remarkable novel bursts with life * Sunday Telegraph * Blisteringly brilliant... You'll lap up this intricately told story of grief, love and the bond between twins * Cosmopolitan * Heartstopping. Hamnet does for the Shakespeare story what Jean Rhys did for Jane Eyre, inhabiting, enlarging and enriching it in ways that will alter the reader's view for ever -- Patrick Gale Grief and loss so finely written I could hardly bear to read it -- Sarah Moss The story of Hamnet Shakespeare has been waiting in the shadows for over four hundred years. Maggie O'Farrell brings it dazzlingly, devastatingly, into the light -- Kamila Shamsie Stunning. The writing is exquisite, immersive and compelling... deserves to win prizes -- Marian Keyes
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About Maggie O'Farrell

Maggie O'Farrell is the author of the Sunday Times no. 1 bestselling memoir I AM, I AM, I AM, and eight novels: AFTER YOU'D GONE, MY LOVER'S LOVER, THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US, which won a Somerset Maugham Award, THE VANISHING ACT OF ESME LENNOX, THE HAND THAT FIRST HELD MINE, which won the 2010 Costa Novel Award, INSTRUCTIONS FOR A HEATWAVE, which was shortlisted for the 2013 Costa Novel Award, THIS MUST BE THE PLACE, which was shortlisted for the 2016 Costa Novel Award, and HAMNET. She lives in Edinburgh.
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Rating details

16,153 ratings
4.37 out of 5 stars
5 55% (8,825)
4 32% (5,228)
3 10% (1,619)
2 2% (354)
1 1% (127)
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