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Hag-seed : The tempest retold / Margaret Atwood.

By: Atwood, Margaret, 1939-.
Contributor(s): Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616. Tempest.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookSeries: Hogarth Shakespeare. Publisher: London : Hogarth, 2016Copyright date: ©2016Description: xiii, 293 pages ; 22 cm.Content type: text Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9781781090237 (paperback).Other title: Hag seed | Hagseed.Subject(s): Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616. Tempest -- Adaptations | Theatrical producers and directors -- Fiction | Revenge -- Fiction | Daughters -- Death -- FictionDDC classification: 813.6 Summary: 'It's got a thunderstorm in it. And revenge. Definitely revenge.' 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 also brewing revenge. After twelve 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? Margaret Atwood's novel take on Shakespeare's play of enchantment, revenge and second chances leads us on an interactive, illusion-ridden journey filled with new surprises and wonders of its own.
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Fiction ATWO Available IA1330238
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Fiction ATWO Issued 17/10/2019 IA1330220
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'It's got a thunderstorm in it. And revenge. Definitely revenge.' 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 also brewing revenge. After twelve 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? Margaret Atwood's novel take on Shakespeare's play of enchantment, revenge and second chances leads us on an interactive, illusion-ridden journey filled with new surprises and wonders of its own.

Excerpt provided by Syndetics

1. SEASHORE Monday, January 7, 2013. Felix brushes his teeth. Then he brushes his other teeth, the false ones, and slides them into his mouth. Despite the layer of pink adhesive he's applied, they don't fit very well; perhaps his mouth is shrinking. He smiles: the illusion of a smile. Pretense, fakery, but who's to know? Once he would have called his dentist and made an appointment, and the luxurious faux-leather chair would have been his, the concerned face smelling of mint mouthwash, the skilled hands wielding gleaming instruments. Ah yes, I see the problem. No worries, we'll get that fixed for you. Like taking his car in for a tuneup. He might even have been graced with music on the earphones and a semiknockout pill. But he can't afford such professional adjustments now. His dental care is low-rent, so he's at the mercy of his unreliable teeth. Too bad, because that's all he needs for his upcoming finale: a denture meltdown. Our revelth now have ended. Theeth our actorth . . . Should that happen, his humiliation would be total; at the thought of it even his lungs blush. If the words are not perfect, the pitch exact, the modulation delicately adjusted, the spell fails. People start o shift in their seats, and cough, and go home at intermission. It's like death. "Mi-my-mo-moo," he tells the toothpaste-speckled mirror over the kitchen sink. He lowers his eyebrows, juts out his chin. Then he grins: the grin of a cornered chimpanzee, part anger, part threat, part dejection. How he has fallen. How deflated. How reduced. Cobbling together this bare existence, living in a hovel, ignored in a forgotten backwater; whereas Tony, that selfpromoting, posturing little shit, gallivants about with the grandees, and swills champagne, and gobbles caviar and larks' tongues and suckling pigs, and attends galas, and basks in the adoration of his entourage, his flunkies, his toadies . . . Once the toadies of Felix. It rankles. It festers. It brews vengefulness. If only . . . Enough. Shoulders straight, he orders his gray reflection . Suck it up. He knows without looking that he's developing a paunch. Maybe he should get a truss. Never mind! Reef in the stomach! There's work to be done, there are plots to be plotted, there are scams to be scammed, there are villains to be misled! Tip of the tongue, top of the teeth. Testing the tempestuous teapot. She sells seashells by the seashore. There. Not a syllable fluffed. He can still do it. He'll pull it off, despite all obstacles. Charm the pants off them at first, not that he'd relish the resulting sight. Wow them with wonder, as he says to his actors. Let's make magic ! And let's shove it down the throat of that devious, twisted bastard, Tony. Excerpted from Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood, William Shakespeare All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

In the fourth-and most entertaining-of the updated-by-famous-contemporary-authors "Hogarth Shakespeare" series, which also includes Jeannette Winterson's The Gap of Time, Howard Jacobson's Shylock Is My Name, and Anne Tyler's Vinegar Girl, The Tempest gets reset to an Ontario theater festival and a correctional facility. Atwood (Oryx and Crake) brilliantly transforms the Bard's tale of lost power and exile into a multimedia production of backstage intrigue and creative revenge. Felix (Prospero) is the lauded artistic director of the Makeshiweg Theatre Festival (think Canada's famed Stratford Festival), but his blind trust in his partner Tony (Antonio) allows the "Machiavellian foot-licker" to usurp Felix's position. Banished from his dramatic kingdom, Felix retreats to a hovel where his dead daughter Miranda is his only (magical) company. He finally ventures out to teach literacy at a local prison, where surprisingly talented inmates will stage-via big-screen technical machinations-The Tempest. Convenient paths toward revenge and restoration are revealed. Narrator R.H. Thomson is perfectly cast, with his round Canadian vowels, infectious energy, and diverse vocal adaptations; he's even convincing as a beatbox rapper. VERDICT For the inventive cursing alone (17th-century vintage only), this Tempest should find favor with most literary audiences, including YA readers; AP English students might be especially grateful. ("The play's final rendering might be a bit over the top, but the narrative as a whole is so inventive, heartfelt, and swiftly rendered as to expunge any doubts. Highly recommended": LJ 9/1/16 starred review of the Hogarth hc.]-Terry Hong, Smithsonian -BookDragon, Washington, DC © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly Review

In The Tempest, Prospero is not just exiled king, magician, and father, he's an impresario staging multiple shows: the storm that strands his enemies on the island; his pretended disdain for Ferdinand, whom he intends for his daughter, Miranda; the play within the play; and, some critics argue, the play itself. In this, the fourth Hogarth Shakespeare adaptation, Atwood underscores these elements by making her Prospero a prominent theater festival director. After being done out of his job by a scheming underling, Felix goes off-grid, teaching literacy and theater to prisoners and grieving a lost daughter. When he learns that the man who took his job, now a political bigwig, will attend the next production, he sees his chance: in this Tempest, it won't just be Prospero who gets revenge. Former diva Felix is a sly and inventive director and teacher who listens to his cast's input, and his efforts to shape the play and his plot make for compelling reading. If, at the end, things tie up a little too neatly, the same might be said of the original, and Atwood's canny remix offers multiple pleasures: seeing the inmates' takes on their characters, watching Felix make use of the limited resources the prison affords (legal and less so), and marveling at the ways she changes, updates, and parallels the play's magic, grief, vengeance, and showmanship. 125,000-copy announced first printing. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

Atwood (The Heart Goes Last, 2015) presents a bravura hall-of-mirrors contribution to the delectable Hogarth Shakespeare project in which novelists reimagine Shakespeare's plays. Felix, the famously over-the-top artistic director of a prestigious Canadian theater festival, is forced out by his conspiring assistant just as he's about to produce The Tempest, which he hoped would help him endure his grief over the death of his young daughter, Miranda. Instead this would-be Prospero exiles himself in the countryside in a veritable hovel for 12 lunatic years, sustained by an avidly imagined spirit daughter and dreams of revenge. A teaching position at a prison breaks the spell. As he channels his theatrical genius into inspiring inmates to create wily, streetwise versions of Shakespeare, he slowly steers them toward The Tempest as part of an audacious plan to finally secure his own personal justice. Atwood positively frolics in this rambunctiously plotted and detailed enactment of how relevant Shakespeare can be for a talented troupe behind bars. Supremely sagacious, funny, compassionate, and caustic, Atwood presents a reverberating play-within-a-play within a novel.--Seaman, Donna Copyright 2016 Booklist

Kirkus Book Review

Despite its title, this novelization of The Tempest explores the perspective not of Caliban, the enslaved witchs son, but of Prospero, his magician master.The latest in The Hogarth Press series of Shakespeare retellings is Atwood's (The Heart Goes Last, 2015, etc.) take on tyranny, betrayal, and art. In dystopias such as The Handmaids Tale (1985), the feminist master of literary science fiction explored the fate of the oppressed, but here she focuses instead on the power of an artist to reimagine his fate. Her Prospero, the actor/impresario Felix Phillips, has spent too many years ignoring office politics so he can concentrate on the things that really mattered, such as his perceptive script notes and his cutting-edge lighting schemes and the exact timing of the showers of glitter confetti of which he has made such genius use. As a result, hes been ousted as Artistic Director of the Makeshiweg Theatre Festival by his scheming second-in-command, Tony Price (Antonio), and the Chair of the Board, Lonnie Gordon (Gonzalo). Fleeing the scene of his betrayal, Felix changes his name to Mr. Duke and finds refuge in the Literacy Through Literature program at the Fletcher County Correctional Institute, a job he agrees to take only if hes allowed to direct the inmates in Shakespeare plays. There he plots revenge, which unfolds when Tony, now Minister of Heritage in the Canadian government, along with Lonnie and assorted other dignitaries, makes a photo-op visit to see Felixs production ofwhat else?The Tempest. Once Felix has his enemies isolated in his dominion, he directs his spritesthe inmate actorsto bewitch, drug, and humiliate them, exposing their treachery. The plots self-referential layers recall Prosperos famous air, thin air speech about actors. But despite this clever construction and a few genuinely moving moments involving Felixs dead daughter, Miranda, who died of meningitis as a toddler and whose spirit hovers through the story Ariel-fashion, the bulk of the novel can feel like spending some 300 pages in a high school English class. The inmate-actors seem more like puppets than people; oddly, the most forgettable is the eponymous Caliban-counterpart. Deliberate and carefully built, this novel rarely pulls off true theaters magic of transforming glitter confetti into fairy dust. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

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