William Shakespeare, Apprentice is a light-hearted fantasy about the years the young Shakespeare spent in the making, which are commonly referred to as the lost years. In an entertaining and persuasive way, this book defies the tenet that “whereof nothing is known thereof one must remain silent”. Shakespeare finds himself drawn into the secret world of Elizabethan espionage, working for one of Sir Francis Walsingham’s agents. He finds time to try his hand at poems and a play. On his return from his first trip abroad, he is given an assignment – this time on his own – to gather intelligence in Spain. After having barely set foot there, he is caught and imprisoned. He determines to become an actor if he regains his freedom. Back again in England, in April of the Armada year, Shakespeare begins his new life. A strange encounter with the charismatic young Earl of Southampton gives rise to Shakespeare’s true genius.

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