Join us for a taste of two remarkable historical novels that are rooted in the past, but speak to our current preoccupations and challenges. While this year of pandemic and social unrest feels unprecedented, we are not the first to live in interesting times. From Shakespear’s England in 1580 to Mexico in the 1960s, much of what we are facing echoes throughout history. Peter Schneider hosts Maggie O’Farrell, winner of the Women’s Prize for Fiction, and J.F. Martel hosts Sarah Xerar Murphy, winner of the New Brunswick Book Award.
Hamnet & Judith by Maggie O’Farrell is a luminous portrait of a marriage, a shattering evocation of a family ravaged by grief and loss, and a hypnotic recreation of the story that inspired one of the greatest literary masterpieces of all time.
Itzel I: A Tlatelolco Awakening, the first of two-part novel, by Sarah Xerar Murphy, tells the story of three disparate characters swept up in the drama of the Mexican student movement of 1968. Broad in scope and exuberant in style in the best tradition of Latin American literature, this book roots its readers in the ebullience of Mexico's daily life and language, even as they are made to confront the horrors of history, to examine the difficulties of friendship and family.