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Fools and Mortals

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LoveReading Says

LoveReading Says

November 2017 Book of the Month

The title of course refers to Puck’s line in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, “Lo what fools these mortals be!”.   It is a new period for Cornwell who is most famous for his Regency “Sharpe” series and more recently for the Viking Last Kingdom series.  This has less battles and bloodshed, more intrigue and infighting, as William Shakespeare’s younger brother struggles to survive as an actor amid the squalor and splendour of Elizabethan London.  He wants to grow up and “take men’s parts” in the plays but his youth and good looks keep seeing him cast as a girl, a dilemma peculiar to the period.  I love Cornwell’s writing.  His detail and characterisation well deserve the praise they so often receive.  As I said this book is less bloody than many of his others.  It is also set in a period more familiar to lovers of historical novels.  It is wonderfully well-written and a must for his fans.  

Sarah Broadhurst

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