My love for Shakespeare did not begin with my first exposure to his work in 9th grade. Quite the opposite as fact, reading Julius Caesar in class put me off the bard. In 12th grade it all changed. Mr. Dennison was one of those rare teachers who not only teach but inspire. He taught us Macbeth. He also created my ongoing love affair with Shakespeare. I never had a class with Shakespeare beyond high school. I feel this background is necessary to explain that I am not a Shakespeare expert and cannot hold my own in any type of academic conversation. But that does not change my love for Shakespeare.
In The Tutor, Andrea Chapin has created a world where Shakespeare lives. It is a rich world with an environment you can touch, smell and see. The characters are just as well created as the environment. The two main characters, William Shakespeare and Katherine, are well written. They are well rounded, not just two dimensional. The other characters are well written also. None seem like window dressing. Shakespeare was written as a man not the god of literature he has become. He was captivating, intriguing and, like most men, aggravating. It was easy to envision him charming everyone. I liked Katherine immensely. She is someone who I could be friends with. She did not need a man to be complete, she was strong enough in who she was.
The story was intriguing. There was a very good sense of the times especially concerning the religious issues. The author did a very good job of showing how society was in a state of flux at the time on all levels. I like the way the book ended. If you have read my other book reviews, you know I do not discuss plot points but let me just say this is one book when finished leaves you satisfied and content with the time you spent in the world the author created.