Monday, April 24, 2017

The Shakespeare Stealer by Gary Blackwood

I wasn't planning to add The Shakespeare Stealer by Gary Blackwood to my blog until after I read the second book of this duo, Shakespeare's Scribe. If you have a young writer or a young actor in your life, they will like these books.

Widge (short for Pigeon) is a young orphan who lives with a doctor who is also a preacher. He teaches Widge to write shorthand so that he can go and steal other preacher's sermons. Widge finds himself purchased by another man who wants him to go to the Globe Theater in London to steal a play by Shakespeare using shorthand.

Widge hasn't been taught right from wrong; he just does what his master tells him to do to avoid a beating, but when he gets to the Globe, things in his world change and he finds himself questioning if what he plans to do is moral.

In the second book, Widge's character grows and he faces new difficulties as the actors must take to the road to avoid the plague. I liked the first book, but with the addition of the second book, things feel complete.

Both stoies show the value of writing and both show much of what goes on behind the scenes of a production. Set in Shakespeare's time, this story will make today's child thankful for modern conveniences, pest control, and medical care. These books have just the right amount of humor, suspense, and intrigue to keep a reader turning pages.

In writing this blog post, I just now discovered that there is a third book in this series, Shakespeare's Spy. Looks like I'll be adding another book to my collection.

Read to a child today even if that child is you. 

Link to our NICU book registry if you'd like to donate books to babies.

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