If I had to study Macbeth at school, I can't think of a better way then to read this book. I Wikipediaed Macbeth the person after reading. This this a fictionalization based on the play, very loosely based on the person Macbeth. Lots of detail on what life was like 1000 years ago. On the downside, book wasn't as engaging as I would have liked. Ok but just ok. I might read Hamalet.
I had high hopes for this book, but instead found that it was half terribly written fantasy and half original play rewritten with mostly modern English. The characters are all even more 2 dimensional than the original play.
This book does a great job of telling the story and filling in the blanks. I really enjoyed how the authors approached such a historic work. Congratulations
Despite what one of the coauthors says in the afterward of the book, they do not reinterpret the text as Shakespeare first did. This was an attempt to fully flesh out centuries old characters with extensive back stories and compelling motivation, but in the end the authors' filled in the blanks of the play's script, despite claims to do the opposite. Want to make it more engaging? Do what Shakespeare did not: extend the story to the length of Macbeth's entire reign! Make the story and the characters layered! Turn it into a true political drama. Make Lady Macbeth more than a hysterical woman grieving for every dead child that she comes across. Show the juxtaposition between the kindness and brutal warrior spirit inside Macbeth. Something! Anything to put meat on this starving husk of one of Shakespeare's bests!
Honestly, I would rather read academic papers on Lady Macbeth being the anti-mother witch and the delve deeper into the witch mythology. In my opinion, the witches, despite their poor characterizations were the most interesting aspect of the novel. Even then, they're not exactly a saving grace for the book. Their circumstances are interesting but in the end they're like everyone else, easily dismissible. In the end, the same could be said for the novel itself: it is easily dismissible.
This isn't what I thought. It was on sale and seeing that it was Shakespeare I thought I would give it a go. Maybe that was my problem, this isn't Shakespeare. I thought it was average at best and felt a little cheated by not experiencing more of Shakespeare. My fault for not paying more attention to the summary of the book.
The narrator was OK; not great. It was good to have a Scottish accent tell the story but his characters all sounded basically the same.
Anyway, not my cup of tea I guess.
Doctor Who, James Bond, Alexandre Dumas, Jane Austen, Shakespeare, Elizabeth Gaskell, but mostly just Doctor Who.
I picked this piece up because it was by the same authors who wrote Hamlet, which won book of the year 2014. Not because it was any less well done, nor anything to do with Alan Cummings brilliant performance, it just failed to get me really interested. Macbeth is just a much darker, creepier story than Hamlet and I personally couldn't get into it.