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Historical Fiction at Henningham Family Press

March 4th, 2021 | Posted by David in Claire Allen | Dedalus | Literature | Mr. Beethoven | Paul Griffiths | The Blackbird | Uncategorized

The Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction 2021 has longlisted the first book in our Historiographic Fictions series: Mr. Beethoven by Paul Griffiths.

The Prize celebrates fiction set over 60 years ago. Which of our books should fans of historical fiction investigate and (ahem) qualify for free UK postage?

There’s been an explosion of lively ideas and fresh ways of storytelling, with traditional notions of historical fiction stretched and tested.

Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction 2021

We are delighted that Mr. Beethoven by Paul Griffiths has found such good company. Griffiths asks what would have happened if Beethoven had travelled to the United States to take up a commission to write a biblical oratorio for Boston’s Handel and Haydn Society. He answers the question with a series of inventive and moving experiments in style, which portray our tenuous connections with the past.

The Blackbird by Claire Allen oscillates between the building of Liverpool Cathedral during 1941’s Blitz, and a post-war housing estate in 2014. Hope’s mother tests the limitations imposed upon her by her controlling husband by forming a relationship with a mason. Meanwhile we follow Hope as an older woman caring for a husband with Alzheimer’s. Louise enters her life as a carer, also dealing with harassment from an old boyfriend. Discover the blog tour here.

Dedalus by Chris McCabe is the sequel to Joyce’s classic Ulysses. It charts Stephen’s progress the day after Bloomsday. Consequently the book takes place on a particular day in history: 17th June 1904.

Parts of this book will remain with me, and pollute my reading of Hamlet and Ulysses, forever. I also add it to my personal library of Great Books About Dead Fathers.

Max Porter : Author of Grief is the Thing with Feathers and Lanny

Buy all three titles here

#WaltScottPrize #HistoricalFiction #Literature

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