Friday, 8 September 2017

Book Review: Globe--Life in Shakespeare's London by Catherine Arnold

Title: Globe--Life in Shakespeare's London
Author: Catherine Arnold
Publisher: Thistle Publishing
Publication Date: 22 August 2017
Pages: 256
Format: eBook-PDF

Genre: Non-Fiction/History
Source: ARC via NetGalley


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The life of William Shakespeare, Britain’s greatest dramatist, is inextricably linked with the history of London. Together, the great writer and the great city came of age and confronted triumph and tragedy. Triumph came with the founding of the Globe in 1599, the patronage of the Queen herself and the golden age of Elizabethan drama. On the shadow side, fatal political intrigue meant tragedy for contemporaries Christopher Marlowe and Thomas Kyd, while the city struggled against the omnipresent threat of riots, rebellions and the devastating plague. Catharine Arnold has created a vivid portrait of Shakespeare and his London from contemporary sources, combining a novelist’s eye for detail and a historian’s grasp of Shakespeare’s unique contribution to the development of the English theatre. No mere work of literary criticism or biography, this is a portrait of Shakespeare, London, the man and the myth. (Goodreads Synopsis)


Globe is a delightful read from start to finish. From an imagined scene that brings to life late Tudor London, Arnold takes us into a fascinating history of the London theatre scene, and Shakespeare's place in it. Arnold's prose is a delight to read and there is never a dull moment. While I already had a pretty good idea about theatre in the Elizabethan era, I still learnt a few new things from reading this book, and it will certainly appeal to both history lovers and Shakespeare fans thanks to its accessibility and easy reading style. This is definitely a book I plan to buy in the future, to keep a copy on my shelf.

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