This slender edition may not be the best Bill Bryson has ever written and is definitely not a book to base a thesis on. But for someone, like myself, who knows the name Shakespeare (never spelt the same way twice!) from his plays and Sonnets this book is an interesting read with the usual touch of Bryson wit.
Bryson expand on the little we know of Shakespeare, remarking that he is “at once the best known and least known of figures”. We don’t even know what he looked like as the three likenesses we have are so different. Even so, Bryson records everything that is known about the Bard, from the earliest scholars to the esteemed ones today, including the scholars like Delia Bacon, who tried to prove some one other than Shakespeare wrote his works.
Also he gives us a setting for the man – Elizabethan and Jacobean England. Although Shakespeare is usually associated with the Elizabethan period, Bill Bryson points out that the majority of his play writing career takes place after her death. We learn about the theatrical scene and the culture in