A clever, pacey thriller set around the search for a lost Shakespearean play.
Tap-tapping the keys and out come the words on this little screen, and who will read them I hardly know. I could be dead by the time anyone actually gets to read them, as dead as, say, Tolstoy. Or Shakespeare. Does it matter, when you read, if the person who wrote still lives?
These are the words of Jake Mishkin, whose seemingly innocent job as an intellectual property lawyer has put him at the centre of a deadly conspiracy and hunt to find a priceless treasure connected to William Shakespeare. As he awaits a killer-or killers-unknown, Jake writes an account of the events that led to this deadly endgame, a frantic chase that began when a fire in an antiquarian bookstore revealed the hiding place of letters containing a shocking secret, concealed for four hundred years. In a frantic race from New York to England and Switzerland, Jake finds himself matching wits with a shadowy figure who seems to anticipate his every move. What at first seems like a thrilling puzzle waiting to be deciphered soon turns into a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse, where no one – not family, not friends, not lovers – is to be trusted.
Moving between twenty-first-century America and seventeenth-century England, ‘The Book of Air and Shadows’is a modern thriller that brilliantly re-creates William Shakespeare's life at the turn of the seventeenth century and combines an ingenious and intricately layered plot with a devastating portrait of a contemporary man on the brink of self-discovery . . . or self-destruction.
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Praise for the HB:
"In this ingenious literary thriller from Gruber, the lives of two men are changed forever by William Shakespeare and the letters of Richard Bracegirdle, a 16th-century English spy and soldier. . . They mysterious murder of a Shakespearean scholar, shootouts in the streets of Queens and an unlikely romance all combine to make for a gripping, satisfying read."
Publishers Weekly (*starred review*)
"A wonderful story with absolutely superb casting."
Kirkus Reviews (*starred review*).
"Gruber deftly raises the thriller stakes and accelerates the plot while still creating convincing personal journeys. . . All that and a tantalizing imagining of Shakespeare's personality, too."
Booklist (*starred review*).
"Not since A.S. Byatt's Possession (1990) has an author so successfully combined literary puzzle, tempestuous duplicity, human adventure and good old-fashioned story-telling. Gruber's highly recommended novel about the search for that which would be 'the greatest single event in Shakespeare studies' – a quest full of chases, murders, mysteries and eccentric characters – is engaging, fast-moving and hilarious.
Don't miss it!"
Michael Gruber has a Ph.D. in marine biology from the University of Miami. He lives in Seattle, Washington, and is currently at work on another novel.
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Book Description William Morrow, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 1996-Book Club Edition. Book & dustjacket are in excellent condition. Hardback. SKU-7201996 2007-04-01. Bookseller Inventory # SKU-7201996
Book Description William Morrow, 2007. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: Hidden in the binding of a charred and ruined book is a cache of letters. They are encrypted and the key to unlocking the mysterious code has been lost for 400 years. If the letters are read, they will lead to one of the most valuable items in the history of the world. Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_0060874465
Book Description New York, New York, U.S.A.: William Morrow & Company, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: Fine. Hardback, 3rd printing, an unread (new) book in a near fine to fine, mylar protected DJ; Jacket has a some laminate loss to front panel from removal of a price sticker. 8vo., 466 pages. 0.0 0.0 0.0. Bookseller Inventory # 18702
Book Description William Morrow, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 1. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0060874465
Book Description William Morrow, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0060874465
Book Description Morrow, NY, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition. 12mo - over 6¾" - 7¾" tall. This is a New and unread copy of the first edition (1st priting). Bookseller Inventory # 021384
Book Description William Morrow & Co, Scranton, Pennsylvania, U.S.A., 2007. Hard Cover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st pr/1st ed, SIGNED by the author on the title page. Book is square, solid, and unread, with a sharp and lustrous DJ in a protective mylar Brodart cover -- you'll feel able to catch bullets in your teeth and leap tall buildings in a single bound when you receive this book!. Bookseller Inventory # 018603
Book Description William Morrow, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110060874465