Happy Birthday, Will Shakespeare! The bard would have turned 455 on April 23. Or would he? Our non-fiction pick for April is Shakespeare by Bill Bryson, which is a biography and also an account of all the stuff we DON’T know about Shakespeare - which includes some of the most basic facts about his life, his birthday included. With the new movie about Shakespeare coming out soon (All is True with Kenneth Branagh) and April being his “birthday” month, we thought it was a perfect time revisit the life of one our society’s most pervasive cultural icons. At just 200 pages, it’s a quick read that will entertain and inform!
FHB Book Club meets at 5:45 PM (non-fiction) and 7 PM (fiction) each 3rd Wednesday of the month. Anyone is welcome to come or not come based on their interest in that month's books. No commitment, no stress...just a chance to learn something new, share your opinions, and meet fellow supernerds. The book discussion is lead by our resident bookworm and brewery co-owner, Molly.
About the Book:
William Shakespeare, the most celebrated poet in the English language, left behind nearly a million words of text, but his biography has long been a thicket of wild supposition arranged around scant facts. With a steady hand and his trademark wit, Bill Bryson sorts through this colorful muddle to reveal the man himself.
Bryson documents the efforts of earlier scholars, from academics to eccentrics. Emulating the style of his famous travelogues, Bryson records episodes in his research, including a visit to a bunker-like basement room in Washington, D.C., where the world's largest collection of First Folios is housed.
Bryson celebrates Shakespeare as a writer of unimaginable talent and enormous inventiveness, a coiner of phrases ("vanish into thin air," "foregone conclusion," "one fell swoop") that even today have common currency. His Shakespeare is like no one else's—the beneficiary of Bryson's genial nature, his engaging skepticism, and a gift for storytelling unrivaled in our time.
The book is available in all print and digital formats as well as audio. The audio version is read by the author.