Violence and infidelity on sun-drenched Hydra: A Theatre for Dreamers, by Polly Samson, reviewed

The beautiful Greek island of Hydra became home to a bohemian community of expats in the 1960s, including the Canadian singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen and his Norwegian lover and muse Marianne Ihlen. The legacy of their relationship is the songs ‘So Long Marianne’, ‘Hey, That’s No Way to Say Goodbye’ and ‘Bird on the Wire’. Their story is so intoxicating that it seems surprising it has not featured in a novel before, but perhaps others have been discouraged by the prospect of portraying someone as dauntingly well known as Cohen. Polly Samson rises beautifully to the challenge in her supremely accomplished A Theatre for Dreamers. She wisely does not introduce Cohen