William Shakespeare, the most celebrated poet in the English language, left behind nearly a million words of text, but his biography has long been a thicket of wild supposition arranged around scant facts. With a steady hand and his trademark wit, Bill Bryson sorts through this colorful muddle to reveal the man himself.
Bryson documents the efforts of earlier scholars, from today's most respected academics to eccentrics like Delia Bacon, an American who developed a firm but unsubstantiated conviction that her namesake, Francis Bacon, was the true author of Shakespeare's plays. Emulating the style of his famous travelogues, Bryson records episodes in his research, including a visit to a bunkerlike room in Washington, D.C., where the world's largest collection of First Folios is housed.
Bryson celebrates Shakespeare as a writer of unimaginable talent and enormous inventiveness, a coiner of phrases ("vanish into thin air," "foregone conclusion," "one fell swoop") that even today have common currency. His Shakespeare is like no one else's—the beneficiary of Bryson's genial nature, his engaging skepticism, and a gift for storytelling unrivaled in our time.
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BILL BRYSON IS EXCELLENT!User Review - dmontoya914 - Overstock.com
Great book on the confusion and issues surrounding the life of William Shakespeare what little we know of him!. Hilarious and a great primeroverview of the many conflicting stories of the life of The Bard Read full review
Fantastic bookUser Review - ZeusBaby - Borders
This book is such an interesting and fast read. Bryson truly 'sets the stage', describing the life and times of a Londoner in Elizabethan and Jacobian times. Since so little is known of the details of ... Read full review