Photo of Maggie O'Farrell

Ten Evenings

Maggie O’Farrell

In conversation with award-winning novelist Julie Orringer


“Every life has its kernel, its hub, its epicentre, from which everything flows out, to which everything returns.”

Maggie O’Farrell, Hamnet

The winner of the 2020 National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction and named a New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year, Maggie O’Farrell’s Hamnet is a luminous portrait of a marriage, a shattering evocation of the impact of grief, and a tender re-imagining of a forgotten boy whose name lives on.

In 1580’s England, during the Black Plague, a young Latin tutor falls in love with an extraordinary, eccentric young woman. Agnes is a wild creature who walks her family’s land with a falcon on her glove and is known for her unusual healing gifts and her understanding of plants and potions. Once she settles with her husband on Henley Street in Stratford-upon-Avon she becomes a fiercely protective mother and a steadfast force in the life of her young husband, whose career on the London stage is taking off when his beloved young son succumbs to sudden fever.

Born in Northern Ireland in 1972, Maggie O’Farrell grew up in Wales and Scotland and now lives in Edinburgh. She is the author of The Hand That First Held Mine (winner of the Costa Novel Award), Instructions for a Heatwave, This Must Be the Place, and most recently her memoir, I Am, I Am, I Am: Seventeen Brushes with Death. Hamnet was also the winner of the Women’s Prize for Fiction.

“Of all the stories that argue and speculate about Shakespeare’s life… here is a novel … so gorgeously written that it transports you.”



Hamnet is available with signed bookplates from White Whale Bookstore.

Hamnet by Maggie O'Farrell book cover


Monday, November 22, 2021
Virtual Event, watch anytime online for one week


Virtual Pass $15
$10 student tickets are available with promo code LS22STUDENT
Video links will be emailed to all ticket holders on the day of the scheduled lecture. Closed captioning will be available.
Community access tickets are available if cost is a barrier to view this lecture. If you’d like to request a community access ticket please email us at




Upcoming Lectures

Anna Monardo

MAY 23

Liann Tsoukas and Rob Ruck

JUN 20

Colm Toibin

SEP 16

Pico Iyer

SEP 30