Friday, May 8, 2015

Shaekspeare's Lady

Shakespeare's Lady: By Alexa Schnee
Media: paperback
Rating 3.5 out of 5 stars

This is a fictional story not about William Shakespeare, but about one of Queen Elizabeth's ladies in waiting:  Emilia Bassano.  She is a young woman eager to serve her queen who becomes the mistress to one of the queens cousins.  While a lady in waiting she meets a young play write: William Shakespeare whom she becomes immediately infatuated with.  Soon she becomes with child and is chosen a husband who is not as caring as the duke was to her.  She develops a friendship with Shakespeare that turns into a love affairs despite each being married, the queens standards.

Throughout the whole time that I was reading this novel, it felt like I had heard or seen the story before.  Then I realized it vaguely familiar to the movie "Shakespeare In Love."  I am not sure which came first, but it was hard to get past the similarities.    With that aside, this was a very well written novel.  Schnee pulls readers into the story straight from the beginning with Emilia being excited to be a lady in waiting and wanting to make the queen proud.  She is the type of character that does no wrong, she tries to do everything by the book and maintain moral standards.  She disapproves of the actions of some of the other girls whom fraternize with various gentlemen throughout the court.

I expected a little more interaction or appearances of William Shakespeare, he doesn't really come into the story well into the book, at least half way through if not more.  I would have liked a little more interaction from him with other characters of the book other than being drunk with Emilia's husband or their affair and discussing his plays.  It is a well written novel and I am thrilled to have been able to read it.  Would I return to it thought?  Possibly not, simply because I got the feeling that I already knew the story and characters since it felt too close to the movie I had mentioned.

Recommendation:  I would recommend this novel for anyone who enjoys Shakespeare, Chick-Lit, Period Literature, Historical fiction etc.  It is a novel that you would find yourself getting lost in.

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