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VOL. 1: ASPIRING SPIRIT. From Stratford to London. (Birth, 1564 - c. 1590) Peter Ackroyd's insightful new biography positions Shakespeare in the close context of his world. In this way, Ackroyd not only richly conjures up the texture of Shakespeare's life, but also imparts an amazing amount of vivid, interesting material about place, period and background. Walk with Ackroyd through sixteenth century London and Stratford as he uncovers the intimate circumstances of Shakespeare's life. Discover the theatrical world in which Shakespeare had his being - not just Shakespeare the actor but the other actors, playwrights, and managers that surrounded him. And journey to Stratford to meet Shakespeare the family man, whose private life had such an impact on his work that the strongest bond in his plays is always between father and daughter.
Peter Ackroyd was born in London in 1949. He achieved a Double First at Cambridge and studied in America at Yale as a Mellon Fellow. His first two publications were books of poetry; his first biography was about Ezra Pound and his first novel was about Oscar Wilde. He is a successful novelist (taking most of his backgrounds from history) and has written biographies of T. S. Ellot, Dickens, Blake and Thomas More, as well as short books on Chaucer and Turner. He has written and presented two TV series for the BBC (Dickens and London) and is the author of London: the biography and Albion: the origins of the English Imagination.