Marlborough Literature Festival – Colm Tóibín – The Magician – Virtual Event

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Sat, 02/10/2021 - 20:00 - 21:00
Public Stream @ Big Screen, Marlborough Town Hall, Marlborough, SN8 1AA, and Online

Colm Tóibín is one of Ireland’s greatest living writers, the author of such modern classics as The Blackwater Lightship, Brooklyn and The Testament of Mary. And for his latest book, he has turned to another literary giant for inspiration: the German novelist Thomas Mann.

In The Magician, described as a sweeping novel of unrequited love and exile, war and family, we learn of the contractions that beset Mann’s life. The father of six children, he kept his homosexuality hidden. Winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, he never returned to Germany, the country that inspired his writing. A cheerleader for the German army in the First World War, he anticipated the horrors of Nazism in the Second World War.

The Magician has echoes of Tóibín’s 2004 novel, The Master, about Henry James, whose life was equally complex. “The stories are sad and then there’s this ebullient reaffirmation of life,” says his agent, Peter Strauss. “Like Colm himself, there’s a duality, within him and these other great writers.”

What is not in any doubt is Tóibín’s literary reputation, which seems to grow with every book. Rumour has it he writes in the most austere of conditions, perched on a hard, uncomfortable chair. Thankfully for the rest of us, the pain is worth it.

This event will be a live online interview and will be displayed on the big screen in the Town Hall. Join us there to watch the event with a complimentary glass of wine, or buy a £5 online ticket to view in the comfort of your own home.

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