Charged in 1616 by the Earls of Pembroke and Montgomery to edit a folio of Shakespeare plays, writer Ben Jonson races against time to uncover the missing manuscripts by seeking out his former nemesis, the bedridden William Shaxper. But far more worrisome is that the Earl of Oxford's daughter, the Countess of Montgomery, wants the folio published as a tribute to her father. Could Lord Oxford's darkest secrets threaten the throne of King James?
Chaucer Award Winner
"Kline keeps the pages turning… a lively interpretation that will win Oxfordian approval and may even convince Stratfordians to suspend disbelief and enjoy it." —Kirkus Reviews
"The writing is adept, and the narrative is compelling...'Shakespeare's Changeling' is historical fiction at its finest..." --Chanticleer Book Reviews
I am an author and educator who believes that writers create within the context of their own experience. By helping students connect the real Shake-speare with his life and works, we enable them to see relationships in their own learning, thinking and writing. Was there more than one Shake-speare, or was he really Lord Oxford, a known writer of his time forced to hide behind his distant kinsman, a grain merchant from Stratford? Not sure? Read my controversial novel and think about it.
Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” unfolds during the Christmas season, merging holiday celebrations with treason and murder. At Elsinore, we witness wassail and treachery. Hamlet’s deep wounds are brutally personal. Many believe, as I do, that the true author of “Hamlet”, the 17th Earl of Oxford, wore the thorny crown of noble birth, and that as a young adolescent and for the rest of his life, believed his own father had been murdered. I wove my novel’s plot to portray a literary partnership between Lord Oxford, whose high birth prevented publishing under his own name, and William Shaxper of Stratford, a distant kinsman.
Shakespeare's Changeling: A Controversial Literary Historical Novel
Shaxper imagined himself sitting beside Her Majesty some day, soaking up honors like a sponge, but first he had to get through this presentation. He anxiously patted his doublet to be sure the poetic recitation he’d been given hadn’t fallen through the hole he’d neglected to mend. Oxford’s impassioned words threatened to burn right through it! Shaxper blushed and began to sweat. He wondered whether the Queen would be furious when she heard her lover’s words coming out of his mouth. He saw the smoke from the book burning rising above the fence and suddenly feared being punished for words he hadn’t written and didn’t understand.