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Hag-Seed

by Margaret Atwood

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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1,8662007,420 (3.99)272
Felix is at the top of his game as artistic director of the Makeshiweg Theatre Festival. His productions have amazed and confounded. Now he's staging a Tempest like no other: not only will it boost his reputation, it will heal emotional wounds. Or that was the plan. Instead, after an act of unforeseen treachery, Felix is living in exile in a backwoods hovel, haunted by memories of his beloved lost daughter, Miranda. And brewing revenge. After 12 years revenge finally arrives in the shape of a theatre course at a nearby prison. Here Felix and his inmate actors will put on his Tempest and snare the traitors who destroyed him. It's magic! But will it remake Felix as his enemies fall?… (more)
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» See also 272 mentions

English (199)  Spanish (2)  Catalan (1)  All languages (202)
Showing 1-5 of 199 (next | show all)
I really enjoyed this book. A play within a play. Retelling of the tempest. I am going to read more of her books. ( )
  wincheryl | Jun 20, 2022 |
It's been five years since I read this but I do remember finding it pleasant reading but otherwise underwhelming (for a Margaret Atwood!) ( )
  Vivl | Jun 7, 2022 |
Part of the Hogarth series (retelling). This was written by Margaret Atwood and is a retelling of The Tempest. It is also layered. We have a man who is trying to put on a play of the Tempest that is terminated from his job. He gets another job where he has prisoners do a Shakespeare play a year and then he gets to once again put on the Tempest but also act out his revenge against those that terminated him from his job. I think the book was well done. ( )
  Kristelh | Mar 14, 2022 |
Hag-seed is a very lively and original take on Shakespeare's The Tempest. I can imagine that high school students who are studying The Tempest can enjoy and learn a lot from this book. Just read this book for fun, even though not everything in the story is completely credible. The synopsis of the original Tempest is on the last few pages of the book, but I recommend you read it first, even if you know the plot of the play. ( )
  Marietje.Halbertsma | Jan 9, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 199 (next | show all)
While “Hag-Seed” is a book that’s great for a quick read, it doesn’t deliver the punches that the premises promise, making it an all-around mediocre book.
 

» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Atwood, Margaretprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Biekmann, LidwienTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Epigraph
“This is certain, that a man that studieth revenge
keeps his own wounds green, which otherwise
would heal, and do well.”

 —  Sir Francis Bacon, "On Revenge."
“. . . although there are nice people on the stage, there are some who would make your hair stand on end.”

 —  Charles Dickens.
“Other flowering isles must be
In the sea of Life and Agony:
Other spirits float and flee
O’er that gulf . . .”

  —  Percy Bysse Shelly, "Lines
Written Among the Euganean Hills."
Dedication
Richard Bradshaw, 1944-2007
Gwendolyn MacEwen, 1941-1987

Enchanters
First words
The house lights dim. The audience quiets.
Quotations
"But Shakespeare is such a classic."
Too good for them, was what she meant. "He had no intention of being a classic!" Felix said, adding a tinge of indignation to his voice. "For him, the classics were, well, Virgil, and Herodotus, and...He was simply an actor-manager trying to keep afloat. It's only due to luck that we have Shakespeare at all! Nothing was even published till he was gone!"
The prisoners loved the fight scenes. Why not? Everyone loved the fight scenes: that's why Shakespeare put them in.
A cruise ship filled with old people, people even older than himself, snoozing in deck chairs and doing line-dancing—that was his idea, if not of hell exactly, then at least of limbo. A state of suspension somewhere on the road to death. But on second thought, what did he have to lose? The road to death is after all the road he's on, so why not eat well during the journey?
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Felix is at the top of his game as artistic director of the Makeshiweg Theatre Festival. His productions have amazed and confounded. Now he's staging a Tempest like no other: not only will it boost his reputation, it will heal emotional wounds. Or that was the plan. Instead, after an act of unforeseen treachery, Felix is living in exile in a backwoods hovel, haunted by memories of his beloved lost daughter, Miranda. And brewing revenge. After 12 years revenge finally arrives in the shape of a theatre course at a nearby prison. Here Felix and his inmate actors will put on his Tempest and snare the traitors who destroyed him. It's magic! But will it remake Felix as his enemies fall?

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Haiku summary
Felix seeks revenge. 
Has jailbirds stage The Tempest.
Entraps his foes! Ha!

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