Calling all bookworms…

The actors speak their final words, the curtains are drawn on-stage and the lights may come up: but the magic does not stop there. For Shakespeare’s Macbeth is a show with rich cultural roots – and its story continues to captivate and inspire the minds of musicians, artists, writers and audiences beyond the theatre (or in our case, the church building).

This year, we are proud to announce our partnership with the lovely Primose Books – one of London’s few family-run and idependent bookshops. After each show they will be selling a carefully-curated range of plays and novels for readers of all ages to get their teeth into. We’ve rounded up their selection below…

For those looking for a dark, riveting classic…

Macbeth by William Shakespeare (Penguin Classics)

It doesn’t get more classic than this, right? If you’re looking to relive the Iris performance or delve deeper into the meaningful monologues of one of England’s greatest playwrights, pick up this paperback to enjoy on your way home.

The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner

The title The Sound and the Fury is taken from Macbeth’s famous Act 5, Scene 5 sililoquy. Dwelling on the idea of “a tale told by an idiot,” Faulkner’s writing cleverly recreates the thought processes of the human mind – perhaps too cleverly – Guardian writer Sarah Churchwell describes the novel as “a kind of detective fiction” that “turns inference into an extreme sport.”

By The Pricking of My Thumbs by Agatha Christie

Yet another famous line from Shakespeare inspiring a whole new story to burst forth from the imagination of a classic writer. Not quite so hard work as Faulkner, the adventures of the beloved detective Miss Marple promise thrills, chills, and a hearty dose of posion and black magic.

For bookworms wanting to expand their horizons…

The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith

In this famous physchological thriller we follow the life of Mr. Ripley, who travels from New York to Italy in search of fame and fortune. Very like Macbeth, this much-loved protaganist is willing to commit all sorts of terrible crimes to keep his confortable lifestyle – but will he ever get caught for it?

Let It Come Down by Paul Bowles

“Let it come down” – the last four words uttered before Banquo’s brutal murder. Praised by Bowles for being “an admirable four-word sentence, succinct and brutal,” this tale explores one man’s decent into brothels, drugs and bad-relationships in a free society and international melting-pot where he is unable to indentify his moral limits.

If you love your strong, female protaganists…

Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk and Other Stories by Nikolai Leskov

In this collection of five of his greatest short stories, engross yourself in the tales of the innovative nineteenth-century Russian writer Nikolai Leskov. Once liberated by a tempestous affair, the repressed Katerina Lvovna spirals down a path of passion and cold-blooded revenge.

The Daughter of Lady Macbeth by Ajay Close

Written by an award-winning journalist, full-time author and playwright, The Daughter of Lady Macbeth explores heart-breaking themes of marital strife, tense mother-daughter relationships and female infertility.

If you desire to get lost in a world of dark fantasy…

Dark Amelia by Sally O’Reilly

Based on the life Aemilia Bassano, Shakespeare’s ‘other woman’ and England’s first female poet, Sally O’Reilly weaves a tale of passion and prose, seduction and the supernatural to form a unique account of his muse.

Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett

With heavy references to Shakespeare and the Marx Brothers, dive into Terry Pratchett’s sixth Discworld novel where witches are hereos, animals can talk and poignant political issues are always covered in a veil of slight ridiculousness.

And finally, not forgetting the kids…

Shakespeare Retold: Macbeth by Marcia Williams

An accessible read for budding bookworms, featuring some of Shakespeare’s original language and beautiful, delicate illustrations.

Shakespeare Tales: Macbeth by Terry Deary

Told through the eyes of Orphaned pot-girl Mary, Terry Deary injects plenty of child-like facination, humour and gore into a retelling of one of Shakespeare’s greatest tales.

 

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