Author: Margaret Atwood
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~When Felix is deposed as artistic director of the Makeshiweg Theatre Festival by his devious assistant and longtime enemy, his production of The Tempest is canceled and he is heartbroken. Reduced to a life of exile in rural southern Ontario—accompanied only by his fantasy daughter, Miranda, who died twelve years ago—Felix devises a plan for retribution.
Eventually he takes a job teaching Literacy Through Theatre to the prisoners at the nearby Burgess Correctional Institution, and is making a modest success of it when an auspicious star places his enemies within his reach. With the help of their own interpretations, digital effects, and the talents of a professional actress and choreographer, the Burgess Correctional Players prepare to video their Tempest. Not surprisingly, they view Caliban as the character with whom they have the most in common. However, Felix has another twist in mind, and his enemies are about to find themselves taking part in an interactive and illusion-ridden version of The Tempest that will change their lives forever. But how will Felix deal with his invisible Miranda’s decision to take a part in the play?
Margaret Atwood's retelling of The Tempest is, at it's core, a delightful book that will leave you wanting more! From the very first page, I was drawn in to the characters and the story, wanting to find out how Felix's tale of revenge would play out. I found myself heartbroken upon learning about Felix's wife's death, and then his daughter's death. He faced heartache and loss that were just horrible.
Despite the loss that happens in the book, there is humor to be found as well. I mean, Felix's reimaginings of plays are enough to make anyone bust a gut. They are weird, and off-beat, but he's a theatre person. I get the weird! And I so didn't want him to lose his job over his weird! But, he moved on - in a sort of wonderful way. (I am probably the only person who will tell you that I loved watching Felix exact revenge on Tony - in the form of teaching a prison class at that.
So, brass tacks.
I liked Felix - I really did. I found him and the other characters to be well-written and fleshed out, each with distinct personalities and traits that were unique to them. The characters fit well together and meshed in a way that really helped move the story along.
THE STORY ITSELF:
How could anyone not love a good re-telling of any Shakespeare play?! The whole book is just one amazing Tempest trip and you will find yourself drawn into it in the best possible way. Atwood has done a stellar job of taking a story and updating it for modern times. The story fell together well and moved along nicely. Everything fit together so amazingly well, and I found myself wishing the story could go on forever. It was charming in so many ways.
Hag-Seed is a 5 star read all the way. Get your hands on a copy - you won't be disappointed.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review from Penguin's Blogging for Books program.