Contested Will

  • by James Shapiro
  • Narrated by Wanda McCaddon
  • 11 hrs and 1 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

For nearly two centuries, the authorship of William Shakespeare's plays has been challenged by writers and artists as diverse as Sigmund Freud, Mark Twain, Henry James, Helen Keller, Orson Welles, Malcolm X, and Sir Derek Jacobi. How could a young man from rural Warwickshire, lacking a university education, write some of the greatest works in the English language? How do we explain the seemingly unbridgeable gap between Shakespeare's life and works?
Contested Will unravels the mystery of Shakespeare's authorship, retracing why and when doubts first arose, what's at stake in the controversy for how we value Shakespeare's achievement, and why, in the end, there can be no doubt about who wrote the plays.


What the Critics Say

“A thorough, engaging work.” (Kirkus)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Somewhat Surprised and very pleased

I was really interested in the Shakespeare Authorship controversy and was looking fowarard to finding out more about William Devere. This book presents a very thorough and balanced position that gave me a lot to consider that the question is far from the black and white case that I once thought it was. The narrator is absolutely the best I have ever heard (imho)on an audio book, I would pay money to listen to her reading the telephone directory
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- Geoff in NY


The author is obviously an expert in the topic. The book is long-winded, true, but I learned a lot about the history of the debate. In the end, I was convinced by Shapiro's even reasoning and converted to his way of thinking about who wrote the works of Shakespeare. I will keep in my library and listen to again to absorb more of the detail. A thorough job.
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- Margaret

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-06-2010
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio