Not Wisely but Too Well by Pauline Montagna
How did Will Shakspere of Stratford-upon-Avon, the son of illiterate parents, with barely a grammar school education, become the greatest playwright the English theatre will ever know? How did he learn his craft? How did he gain the knowledge his plays display? What was his own experience of the love, passion, pain and ambition he wrote into every line?
This is the story of how that journey began.
Having run foul of the local authorities, Will Shakspere is driven out of his home town in the English midlands. Leaving behind his first love, his wife and his three young children, he goes to London where he is welcomed into the Burbage family whose patriarch, James Burbage, has built London’s first playhouse.
There Will finds himself at the centre of the English theatre, its touring companies, its revolutionary playwrights, its creativity, passions and rivalries. There he meets the men that will steer him towards his destiny, the actor Richard Burbage, and the playwright, Christopher Marlowe. There he finds not only love, passion and pain, but his muse and inspiration.
And it is there that he sets out on a path that will take him deep into the labyrinthine politics of Elizabeth’s court.