Hannan, Maggie 1962-

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HANNAN, Maggie 1962-


Born 1962, in Wiltshire, England.


Home—Hull, England. Agent—c/o Author Mail, Bloodaxe Books Ltd., Highgreen, Tarset, Northumberland NE48 1RP, England.




Gregory Award, 1990; shortlist, Forward Prize for Best First Collection, for Liar, Jones.


Liar, Jones (poetry collection), Bloodaxe Books (New-castle upon Tyne, England), 1995.

Contributor of poems to anthologies, including No Holds Barred, The Gregory Anthology, The New Lake Poets, The New Poetry, Making for Planet Alice, and New Blood.


Maggie Hannan's first poetry collection, Liar, Jones, was published in 1995. This slim volume has since met with favorable reviews. Singled out for particular notice by Carmela Ciuraru in the Boston Review was the sequence of six poems entitled "Making Conversation," which are all narrated by a persona of ambiguous gender. The poet, according to Ciuraru, "seems to savor … readers speculating who is saying what to whom" in the sequence. She lauded Liar, Jones as "syntactically quirky and inventive."

Both Helen Dunmore in the Observer and Ian Sansom in the Times Literary Supplement cited "Dr. Roget's Bedside Manner" from this same collection as worthy of reader attention. Hannan provides an epigraph to the poem explaining that English scholar Peter Mark Roget (1779-1869) was also a doctor and developed his famous thesaurus with an aim towards better communication between himself, his medical students, and his patients. "She then imagines what the resulting communications might be," reported Dunmore, including a diagnosis of syphilis. Sansom saw the poem as an example of Hannan's "fascination with linguistic fecundity." Dunmore praised Hannan's work as "nervy and demanding," though warned that sometimes her poetry is "inaccessible." Sansom placed Liar, Jones "in the great tradition of experimental poetry," further commenting that "Hannan's indirection is an attempt to come closer to truth."



Boston Review, February-March, 1997, Carmela Ciuraru, review of Liar, Jones, p. 2.

Observer (London, England), May 26, 1996, Helen Dunmore, "A Few Dolours More," review of Liar, Jones, p. 16.

Times Literary Supplement, August 4, 1995, Ian Sansom, review of Liar, Jones, p. 23.


Bloodaxe Books Web site,http://www.bloodaxebooks.com/ (August 9, 2004), "Author Page—Maggie Hannan."*