A review by lissybeth91
Hamnet, by Maggie O'Farrell

hopeful inspiring reflective sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated


Not to be a massive Shakespeare fan-girl on main, but oh my goodness. Oh my gracious. Oh my goodness gracious me. This is a beautiful book. It has been messing with my sleep schedule for the past week, and I have no regrets. 

Most of the reviews I've seen focus on the fact that Shakespeare's name is never used in this book, so as someone who has had a massive crush on the man for the past decade (I know I'm pathetic), I was worried that this book would be some sort of anti-Shax manifesto about how he was a horrible family man. But if you've had the same fear, rest assured... O'Farrell's characterization of him is by far the best I've ever seen. It truly felt like she knows the same man I do, and that was a beautiful thing. 

But enough about him. Every single character is written with such sensitivity and real "humanity" that I feel as if I have lived in Stratford with them my whole life. I love every single one of them. Well. Okay, there are two that I hate, but even those two are written with understanding and grace. Beyond the characters, the words themselves are lyrical and stunning.

Read. This. Book 

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