Mrs. Shakespeare: The Complete Works : a Novel
It is April 1594. William Shakespeare, a budding poet and playwright plying his trade in London, magnanimously invites his estranged wife Anne Hathaway to come down from Stratford-on-Avon to celebrate his thirtieth birthday.
"Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" he inquires politely as she arrives. "No thanks," she responds.
This playful but gently probing novel portrays Shakespeare as one has never seen him before, through the eyes of Anne, a tamed but not unloving shrew. Writing her memoirs seven years after his death, she reminisces about her now-famous husband, recalling in particular that unforgettable week in April 1594 and what happened to her in a certain strange bed in his lodgings above a fishmonger's shop - an enormous four-poster that the playwright referred to as their "private playhouse." Mrs. Shakespeare's tales offer insights into Will's secret lives, including solving the mystery of the second best bed that he bequeathed her, as well as the question that has intrigued countless scholars through the centuries: to whom and for whom the Dark Sonnets were written.
In telling these stories, and many others, Anne Hathaway casts a brilliant new light on Shakespeare, providing a very close look at the master by one who shared his bed but never bothered to read him. Robert Nye knows Shakespeare as well as any living scholar or historian, and his use of fiction to recreate the Bard's world brings him and Anne Hathaway wonderfully alive. This is a riot of scholarship and bawdy writing.
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MRS. SHAKESPEARE: The Complete WorksUser Review - Kirkus
The dexterous Nye provides another wonderful Shakespearean "biography" (The Late Mr. Shakespeare, 1999), this time by giving Anne Hathaway her chance to tell all.And tell all she does, in short takes ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - kaionvin - LibraryThing
Summary: Mrs. Shakespeare, now widowed, recollects her one trip to London to visit her famous bard husband- deconstructing the man, the myth, the image. Anne's no poet- she's down-to-earth, unlearned ... Read full review