Judith is talented, creative, and driven to accomplish great things. But, alas, she has one "shortcoming" that stands in her way-she's a woman.
Set in sixteenth-century England, The Other Shakespeare tells the tale of Judith Shakespeare, older sister to the famous William, as she struggles to develop her talent and gain acceptance in a world that won't recognize her because of her gender. Consistently denied her independence, she's forced to engage in extreme measures to get what she wants out of life-and to make difficult decisions that will shock and surprise you.
Written in the vein of character transplant novels like Grendel, Ahab's Wife, and What Happened to Anna K, Lea Rachel's novel brings new life to a character that first appeared in another publication. Judith Shakespeare was originally introduced in acclaimed author Virginia Woolf's masterpiece A Room of One's Own-and now Judith's full story is told in this speculative piece, which answers the ultimate question, "What if Shakespeare had been born a woman?"
A must-read for Woolf and Shakespeare fans alike, The Other Shakespeare combines history, social issues, and drama in a compelling story that will thoroughly entertain and enlighten.
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.47(d)|
About the Author
Lea Rachel possesses a strong literary background firmly planted in her roots, education, and experiences. Originally from Detroit, Michigan, she hails from a bloodline of writers, including her grandmother Beki Bahar, an internationally published Turkish author and poet, and her uncle Anthony Kosnik, coauthor of a well-respected liturgical book that circulated circa the 1970s.
Rachel attended the University of Michigan, where she had two short stories published in the competitive literary publications Prism and The Write Stuff. She has attended writing workshops at the University of Michigan, University of California, and University of Iowa-and placed fifth, out of 18,000 entries, in the personal essay category of the 72nd Annual Writer's Digest Writing Competition.
Rachel makes her home in St. Louis, Missouri, with her husband and son. The Other Shakespeare is her first novel, released subsequent to her debut work, a personal memoir entitled I Promise.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This. Book. Is. Amazing! I flew through this book, the end came way too soon. The end of this book left me wanting more...but in a good way of course. I hope there will be a part 2!! I need to know if Cuthbert gets his sh** together! I will definitely be looking for more from this author.
Author, Lea Rachel, ventures into the possibility of William Shakespeare's sister, as an equally talented individual as was William. DID he truly write all his plays without another's contribution? As consonant with Shakespeare's writing, this is a bitter-sweet tale of a fictional tale of William Shakespeare's home life as he grew up. The eldest sister, Judith, is the main character in this literary work. Entertaining the idea of a girl/woman who did not fit the mold of a "proper" female role in Shakespeare's time...A time when women were deemed to be of little value, considered helpless and quite void of feeling and intelligence. Flowing smoothly from one scene to another, the story mostly maintained the reader's interest. In a few parts, it felt repetitious and excessive, The characters were portrayed quite well, the book cover - although simple - was an acceptable "fit" as was the title, The concepts presented were very clear, with the story's ending very reflective of Shakespeare's writings. My Review of this book offers a Four Stars rating. *I was sent this book in exchange for an honest review, of which I have given.
Judith Shakespeare is the older sister of William, and she loves leading her siblings in plays and pageants that she writes herself. As long as it's just a diversion during their free hours, no one minds. But Judith is growing up, and things start to get more complicated. When she's sent off to London for an apprenticeship in the Mountjoy household, she expects to miss her siblings and their plays, but instead finds that she loves the liveliness and variety of London. And she discovers the wealth of professional theater available, befriending the players of the Leicester's Men theater troupe. We see Judith developing new ambitions, and growing as a writer, as she writes early drafts of plays that the English-speaking world is now happily very familiar with. Unfortunately, it's still the 16th century, and there is little room for women to step outside their assigned role. To the extent that it might be possible, it would take a less invincibly naïve than Judith. This is a fascinating look at an alternative answer to "who wrote Shakespeare's plays?", as well as the lives of women in 16th century England. [Note: William Shakespeare wrote Shakespeare's plays. The determination to find other, more acceptable answers, such as the Earl of Oxford or Christopher Marlowe, are grounded mostly in classism.] Judith is a likable, engaging character, and her frustrations are real, even if sometimes I want to sit her down and give her a strong lecture. I like that she gets to see some of the forces behind her mother's difficult attitude, but also that that doesn't become a magic moment that changes everything. All in all, an interesting and enjoyable book. Recommended.
Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings William Shakespeare is the famous sibling, but this book centers around his older sister Judith and her struggle to find a place for herself within the confines of the social norms for women at the time. I love where this book started, 5 of the Shakespeare children are alive at the beginning and playing theatre in their backyard, it was the best place to start and show the history of how Judith would become so in love with theatre. But the place where I got really attached with Judith was when she moves to London and isn't sure if this is the place for herself and then she finds her "people." Seeing that growth and then her "inspiration" for Romeo and Juliet was awesome.
William Shakespeare had a sister! Hmm...Okay, now I'm sad. There may be spoilers in this review. I'm just warning you, I can't help it. Anyway, I liked this book and I am glad I got the opportunity to read it. It held my interest and was well-written. After the final page, the author challenges the reader to find the Shakespeare quotes she embedded in every chapter. Unfortunately, I am not familiar enough with most of Shakespeare's writings to do that, although I did catch a reference or two. That certainly would be fun for Shakespeare fans. I immediately caught the Virginia Woolf references however, especially the final one. That could be a spoiler, but only if you know anything about Virginia Woolf. As I said previously, the story was well-written. Situations were believable for the time period, except I doubt a woman would be welcomed so frequently by a troupe of male actors at their pub without them thinking the worst of her. It was sad that she couldn't get any recognition for her writing talent. I kept trying to figure out in my mind how the world discovered Judith's "Romeo and Juliet" and attached William's name to it. Did she tell Robert Greene her brother wrote it just to have it accepted and then did Judith collect the royalties in her brother's name so she could stay in London? It could have worked. There were several pages when I tried to tell her to do that, but alas, she didn't listen. Such a sad ending and stupid James Burbage just watched. I expected more from him. The author definitely engaged me in the story which is why, as I said, I'm sad now.