Review of “Hamnet” by Maggie O’Farrell

  3.5-4 star review


This is a story of Agnes who marries and has three children. One of the children dies at 11 years old. The grief has her husband write a play called “Hamlet.” This is a story of grief and recovering from that grief.

My thoughts:

This book was beautifully written. Her writing was just superb. This is one thing that I loved about this book.

The plot was interesting. I read the summary and had to read it. Shakespeare and a plague were all interesting subject matters to me.

The subject matter is not for the faint of heart. The death of a child and the grief that follows. This is not a light hearted book. I typically hate this type of book. They really depress me. This book was not too bad.

For a  character driven novel, I found the characters to be a little flat. I am sure that I am in the minority with this one. I really was not invested in their lives at all. For a book that is all about people and their grief, I would have wanted more developed characters. You need to care about them and their fate.

By the end of the novel, I had to pick up a rom-com just to re-group. The tone for this book (rightfully so) is dark and depressing. But it worked for the subject matter.

Trigger warnings: death of a child.

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