As an orphan, few opportunities were open to young Widge. His life changes completely when his master sells him to a mysterious man who wants to use Widge's most valuable skill, a technique of shorthand writing that enables him to write down passages as fast as they are spoken.
This new master sends him to London, with a dangerous job. Widge is to attend a performance of Shakespeare's Hamlet and copy down the entire play so that a rival theater company can perform it. When Widge enters the Globe Theatre he encounters something that he never experienced before. The players are welcoming and friendly, and soon they offer to take Widge on as an apprentice. Eager to become a player like them Widge accepts. But soon he is pressed on both sides. Will he steal Hamlet and thereby hurt his new friends, or will he risk angering his dangerous master, who is tracking him through London?
I really enjoyed “The Shakespeare Stealer.” The historical aspects of the story feel very well researched and the behind-the-scenes look at the Globe Theatre was quite unique. Gary Blackwood's story is at the same time both educational and enjoyable. The suspense and exciting plot are sure to thrill readers of all ages.
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