I Am Pandarus
My knowledge of the story of Troilus and Cressida (Criseide or Criseyde depending on whose doing the telling) is limited. I know it’s a Greek mythological tale of the Trojan Wars that Shakespeare and Chaucer, among others, opted to interpret each in his own way. So that Criseyde had an uncle called Pandarus and that he was a champion archer had escaped me. As it might you. But this need not impede your enjoyment of Heyns’ latest title – because, while as a former professor of English and an award-winning novelist, he has immersed himself in literature of all persuasions and eras, and writes in a style that’s witty, accessible and enormously ‘now’.
His Pandarus, albeit in a rather mercurial fashion, has made a reappearance back on Earth with a view to setting his story straight. He appears, in a London gay bar of all places, to a jilted publisher who he is determined must publish his book. Heyns describes his version of the T&C story as ‘promiscuously anachronistic’ taking a ‘classical-medieval-Elizabethan amalgam and applying a twenty-first century perspective to it… offering in all humility, a Troilus and Criseyde for a sceptical age.’ Highbrow? Not really, just enjoy the ride – and if you get lost there is thoughtfully an alphabetical character list for reference from Achilles to Zeus. But you can make up your own mind about who Pandarus really was – or is. Author: Michiel Heynes Reviewer: Nancy Richards
Publisher: Jonathan Ball ISBN: 978-1-86842-775-8 Price: R250 Giveaway Code: PANDARUS
Author: Ishay Govender-Ypma Reviewer: Alma Loubser Publisher: Human & Rousseau Price: R400 ISBN: 978-0-79817-237-0 Giveaway Code: CURRY