When he is caught by his wife in one ill-advised seduction too many, young William Shakespeare flees Stratford to seek his fortune. Cast adrift in London, Will falls in with a band of players, but greater men have their eye on this talented young wordsmith. England’s very survival hangs in the balance, and Will finds himself dispatched to Venice on a crucial assignment. Once there, Will is dazzled by the city’s masques and its beauties, but Catholic assassins would stop at nothing to end his mission on the point of their sharpened knives—and lurking in the shadows is a killer as clever as he is cruel.Suspenseful, seductive, and as sharp as an assassin’s blade, The Spy of Venice introduces a major new literary talent to the genre—thrilling if you’ve never read a word of Shakespeare and sublime if you have.
Benet Brandreth is an expert on Shakespeare's language and times, the rhetoric coach to the Royal Shakespeare Company, and a writer and performer whose last one-man show was a five-star reviewed sellout at the Edinburgh Fringe and on its London Transfer. The Spy of Venice was his debut novel.