Grendel's Mother Reading & Signing: Nov 18

This feminist revision of the Old English epic, Beowulf, traces the life of Brimhild, who weaves peace and conveys culture to the kingdom, until the secret of her birth threatens to tear apart the fragile political stability. This is her story – the tale of Grendel’s Mother, who is no monster. We see the many passages of her life: the brine-baby; the hall-queen; the exiled mere-wife; and the seer. We learn how the invasion by brutal men is not a fairy tale, but a disaster doomed to cycle relentlessly through human history. Only the surviving women can sing poignant laments, preserve a glittering culture, and provide hope for the future.

Kirkus Reviews writes, "Morrison writes in alliterative, lyric prose thatevokes the Old English of her source text.... An incredible world is spun out of blunt, staccato words.... Morrison manages to update the medieval morality of the original poem while preserving its mournful sense of the old ways passing away. An enchanting, poignant reimagining of Beowulf."

Living in Austin, Texas, Susan Morrison writes on topics lurking in the margins of history, ranging from recently uncovered diaries of a teenaged girl in World War II to medieval women pilgrims, excrement in the Middle Ages, and waste. Susan Morrison is Professor of English at Texas State University. She grew up in New Jersey by the Great Swamp, a National Wildlife Refuge with terrain not unlike that of Grendel's Mother's mere in "Beowulf." Committed to bringing the lives of medieval women to a wider audience, Susan can be found at and tweets @medievalwomen.

Event date: 
Wednesday, November 18, 2015 - 7:00pm to 8:45pm
Event address: 
5501 North Lamar #A-105
Austin, TX 78751
Grendel's Mother: The Saga of the Wyrd-Wife Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781785350092
Published: Top Hat Books - September 25th, 2015