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The Amber Fury: Myth, Tragedy and Fiction

Saturday 29 March 2014

1 Hour


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Writer, broadcaster, classicist and former stand-up comic Natalie Haynes talks to editor of the Times Literary Supplement and fellow classics scholar Sir Peter Stothard about her debut novel, The Amber Fury, how the plot is woven around the Greek tragedies, and about the relevance of the classical world to today. Haynes says she retired as a stand-up comic when she realised she preferred tragedy. Her novel sees grieving Alex Morris take a job teaching troubled and difficult children at a pupil referral unit in Edinburgh. She begins to develop a rapport with the children through the teaching of Greek tragedies but fears that the stories of cruel fate and bloody revenge are being taken to heart and that a whole new tragedy is being performed in front of her.

Haynes writes a column for the Independent and a blog for the Guardian. She regularly speaks about the modern relevance of the classical world. Stothard is a former editor of The Times. Since becoming editor of the TLS, he has written mainly on Greek and Roman literature. His recent book, Alexandria: The Last Nights of Cleopatra, was partly a personal memoir tracing his lifelong interest in Cleopatra and partly a travel book.