Fierce Appetites

186

Loving, losing and living to excess in my present and in the writings of the past

By Elizabeth Boyle

Every day a beloved father dies. Every day a lover departs. Every day a woman turns forty.

All three happening together brings a moment of reckoning.

Medieval historian Elizabeth Boyle made sense of these events the best way she knew how – by immersing herself in the literature that has been her first love and life’s work for over two decades.

Fierce Appetites is the exhilarating and deeply humane result. Not only does Elizabeth Boyle write dazzling accounts of ancient stories, familiar and obscure, from Ireland and further afield, but she uses her historical learning to grapple with the raw and urgent questions she faces, questions that have bedevilled people in every age. She writes on grief, addiction, family breakdown, the complexities of motherhood, love and sex, memory, class, education, travel (and staying put) with unflinching honesty, deep compassion and occasional dark humour.

Fierce Appetites is captivating and original – as an insight into the mind and heart of a groundbreaking scholar, and as a wise and reassuring account of what it is to be human.

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