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About the book
  • Published: 30 June 2015
  • ISBN: 9781473530256
  • Imprint: BBC Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 416

In Search Of Shakespeare




Almost 400 years after his death, William Shakespeare is still acclaimed as the world's greatest writer, and yet the man himself remains shrouded in mystery. In this absorbing historical detective story, the acclaimed broadcaster and historian Michael Wood takes a fresh approach to Shakespeare's life, brilliantly recreating the turbulent times through which the poet lived: the age of the Reformation, the Spanish Armada, the Gunpowder Plot and the colonization of the Americas.

Drawing on an extensive range of sources, Michael Wood takes us back into Elizabethan England to reveal a man who is the product of his time - a period of tremendous upheaval that straddled the medieval and modern worlds. Using a wealth of unexplored archive evidence the author vividly conjures up the neighbourhoods of the Elizabethan London where Shakespeare lived and worked during his glittering career. Full of fresh insights and fascinating new discoveries, this book presents us with a Shakespeare for the twenty-first century: a man of the theatre, a thinking artist, playful and cunning who held up a mirror to his age, but who was also, as his friend Ben Jonson said, 'not of an age, but for all time'.

  • Pub date: 30 June 2015
  • ISBN: 9781473530256
  • Imprint: BBC Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 416

About the Author

Michael Wood

Michael Wood is the author of Stendhal, America in the Movies, Garcia Marquez: One Hundred Years of Solitude and The Magician's Doubts: Nabokov and the Risks of Fiction (also available in Pimlico). He writes film and literary criticism for the London Review of Books, the New York Times Book Review and other publications. He studied Modern Languages at St John's College, Cambridge, where he was later a Fellow. He taught for along time at Columbia University in New York and then at the University of Exeter. He is currently Professor of English at Princeton University. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

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Praise for In Search Of Shakespeare

“Wood's is an honest, well-organised account that will serve the reader well.”

Independent on Sunday

“Thanks to the author's gifts of story-teller, populariser and interpreter, Shakespeare's world is brought to life more vividly than in any other biography of him I have read. All the latest professional scholarship on the question on Shakespeare and Catholicism is effectively incorporated in the book, but where Wood has made genuine finds of his own is in the area of the dramatist's day-to-day life.”

Sunday Telegraph

“In this enthralling book Michael Wood evokes the physical and intellectual environment in which Shakespeare lived and worked with vivid and original immediacy.”

Professor Stanley Wells, Editor of The Oxford Shakespeare

“Wood is a perceptive, entertaining and enthusiastic companion.”

Sunday Times

“Shakespeare emerges from the book as the master general he must have been.”

Clive James, Times Literary Supplement

“[Michael Wood] succeeds in putting together a complete account of the greatest poet and dramatist in history, one that is both convincing in its narrative and compelling in its detail.”

Living History


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