Two Loves of Will Shakespeare

Book Description

Young William Shake­speare should be tak­ing his glove-mak­ing appren­tice­ship much more seri­ous­ly. How­ev­er, carous­ing with his friends, woo­ing women, and sneak­ing off to see plays are all high­er pri­or­i­ties for him. This changes when Will’s best friend, Richard, asks him to write and deliv­er son­nets to a young woman, pre­tend­ing the love poems are from Richard.

Once Will lays eyes on the beau­ti­ful Anne Whate­ley, he falls deeply in love. But entan­gle­ments with a cer­tain Anne Hath­away, the dis­cov­ery of an old prank, and Will’s dis­tract­ed nature all com­pli­cate mat­ters for the future Bard of Avon.

In this high­ly enter­tain­ing nov­el, Lau­rie Lawlor mus­es on a his­tor­i­cal mys­tery: how there came to be two sep­a­rate mar­riage license appli­ca­tions tak­en out on con­sec­u­tive dates in Novem­ber 1582 between eigh­teen-year-old William Shake­speare and two dif­fer­ent women, both named Anne.

Reviews and Comments

“Lawlor bases her sto­ry of the Bard’s ear­ly life on an enig­mat­ic his­tor­i­cal snip­pet. She intro­duces read­ers to a rebel­lious, ale-lov­ing, 18-year-old who likes noth­ing bet­ter than woo­ing women and tak­ing part in pranks that sub­vert both the law and his par­ents’ wish­es. … The well-writ­ten chap­ters over­flow with inter­est­ing and accu­rate details of Eliz­a­bethan life.” (School Library Jour­nal)

“The still unex­plained exis­tence of mar­riage license appli­ca­tions made out on con­sec­u­tive days for Shake­speare and two dif­fer­ent women makes a promis­ing his­tor­i­cal tid­bit for any sto­ry­teller. Lawlor makes good on that promise, por­tray­ing 18-year-old Will as a rest­less but well-mean­ing wastrel with a gift for words, rag­ing hor­mones, remark­ably poor judg­ment, and the atten­tion span of a flea. … the author cre­ates both a vivid set­ting and a feck­less pro­tag­o­nist, equal­ly cred­i­ble as an ado­les­cent and as a prod­uct of his times.” (Book­list)

“Lawlor offers a rip-roar­ing tale about Will Shake­speare as a wild ado­les­cent with a touch of ADD. … Weav­ing a few known facts of Shakespeare’s ear­ly life with gen­er­ous swaths of his­tor­i­cal col­or, Lawlor paints a vivid and reck­less por­trait,” (Kirkus Reviews)

The Two Loves of Will Shakespeare

writ­ten by Lau­rie Lawlor
Hol­i­day House, 2006

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