The evil that men do lives after them; The good is oft interred with their bones-Shakespeare-or someone using that name.
Interred With Their Bones is the story of a lost Shakespeare play and the quest to discover who really wrote the plays credited to one William Shakespeare. Interred Withe Their Bones is much like The Da Vinci Code and National Treasure, in that there are all these ages old secrets hanging about-in Shakespeare's case hidden for about 400 years-and yet all the hidden papers and secret compartments are still in tact and in perfect working order.
Anyone who has seen a real time capsule opened up knows that things tend to mold and decay almost instantly. But such petty matters are never dealt with in Treasure Stories-especially when the treasure in question is a manuscript written in the hand of Shakespeare.
The story of a young woman who is a Shakespeare scholar that happens to be directing a production of Hamlet at The Globe in London. On the anniversary of the original Globe's burning down, a fire breaks out at the new Globe and The Globe's copy of The First Folio is lost. There is a lot of talk about First Folios-the first collected edition of the plays of Shakespeare-who published it, who may have edited it, who may have secretly written this and that within it.
With the fire at The Globe, our Hero sets off on a trip around the world and back again-all in search of a Missing Shakespeare play. Also in search of the man himself-if, in fact, there was a man. The story hinges on the fact that we know next to nothing about Shakespeare, so you can pretty much make up whatever you want and it sounds reasonable enough.
There are murders, and people who don't want to know the Truth, and a travelogue of odd and little known Shakespeare sites. There are also a few small flashbacks to Shakespeare's time to help clarify what is happening in the present. There are a lot of names and dates and places that have special meaning for the Shakespeare scholar-but meant little enough to me.
In the end, our brave author chickens out and doesn't revel whether or not William Shakespeare wrote the plays or if they were the work of a merry band of writers, or one writer in particular. Just as I wanted Professor Langdon to run off with the Cup of Christ and add his own DNA to the Blood Line-I wanted our questing Professor Kate Stanley to find all her answers and share them with us. Have the courage of your fantasy convictions-let our hero find The Truth.
Well, maybe author Jennifer Lee Carrell is saving The Truth for the next book.
Interred With Their Bones the audio book is read by the brilliant Kathleen McNenny, who does a great job of providing a wide and varied cast of characters with voices and emotions. From Stiff Upper Lip English to Native American Rancher to plain Dumb American-she does a great job. For some reason I always have an easier time listening to a woman doing a man's voice than I do a man doing a woman's voice. Kathleen's men and women of all ages are given unique voices and it was easy to recognize characters, even when I hadn't heard them in a couple of discs.
The real world hints and clues and theories that William Shakespeare is not the author of the plays and poems bearing his name are fun-and rather pointless. I particularly liked a little bit of business which has Shakespeare writing the Psalms in the King James Version of the Bible and hiding his name with a Francis Bacon Cipher-
Psalm 46 (KJV), if you count 46 words from the beginning you find "shake," and 46 from the end, "spear." Some particularly keen bean counters have noted that Shakespeare was 46 years old in at least part of 1611 when the Bible was being put together. Great stuff-silly, but still great.
Interred With The Bones was a fun book.