The Tutor is a sumptuous debut from Andrea Chapin set against the historical intrigue of Shakespearean England. 'Since meeting you, dear lady, I have put quill to page every day.
I write and write and write.' Headstrong young widow Katherine de L'Isle lives a comfortable but solitary existence in her uncle's Lancashire home of Lufanwal Hall until events conspire to shatter her tranquility.
First, the family priest is murdered - for his Catholic sympathies - causing her uncle and protector to flee the country.
Abandoned by their father figure, the Lufanwal residents struggle to cope and old rivalries fester beneath the surface.
Into this midst of this upheaval, there arrives a new schoolmaster from Stratford by the name of William Shakespeare.
Rude, flirtatious and wickedly witty, Will appalls Katherine.
Yet the discovery of a mutual love of poetry draws them together and Katherine finds she can never stay away from him for long.
First she is seduced by his words, then by his passion.
Beneath her excitement, Katherine knows that Will already has a wife - she becomes his muse but will she ever be his true love?Alone, vulnerable and entangled, Katherine is plunged heart and soul into a passion she cannot control.
Meanwhile scandal and intrigue are growing around her family: murder, witchcraft, adultery and high treason loom on the horizon.
Worst of all, the more she learns of charming young Will Shakespeare, the more it seems that he is not who he claims to be..."The Tutor plunges fearlessly into the uncharted years of history to give us a sumptuous, page-turning account...Katharine De L'Isle, the book's riveting heroine, isn't just young Will Shakespeare's muse, but his teacher in every sense, even as she unwisely loses her head and heart to him.
I was completely captivated. Andrea Chapin is a writer to watch." (Paula McLain, New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Wife). "History springs to vivid life in this beautifully written novel about a young William Shakespeare and the passionate, intelligent woman who changed the course of his life forever." (Christina Baker Kline, New York Times bestselling author of The Orphan Train). "Sexy and cerebral, Andrea Chapin's romp through one of Shakespeare's lost years will beguile lovers of poetry and romance alike.
A literary delight."(Elizabeth Gaffney, author of When the World Was Young). "First-time novelist hapin sets the stage for a smart and charming work of historical fiction...this Shakespeare is, ultimately, a sort of emotional vampire.
He requires adoration, and he uses women-many women-as raw material for his art.
This is an audacious move, but Chapin makes it real, and the scenes in which Katharine defends Will to her doubting lady friends will ring true to any woman who has ever uttered the words, 'You just don't understand him!' An elegant entertainment and an impressive debut." (Kirkus). "A delightful literary fantasy. Imagine being Shakespeare's muse, a lively, smart, beautiful being...In Andrea's Chapin's absorbing The Tutor we have a woman to thank for the shape of western literature." (Martha McPhee, author of Gorgeous Lies). "We will always be haunted by the question 'What inspired Shakespeare's greatest poetry?' In her captivating debut novel, Andrea Chapin offers a brilliant solution.
The Tutor is a terrific achievement, one that allows us a glimpse into the workings of Shakespeare's mind and heart." (James Shapiro, author of Contested Will: Who Wrote Shakespeare?). "With all the fire and spark of the best romance novels but the detail and weight of finely rendered historical fiction, debut novelist Chapin has crafted a fascinating and masterly background to Shakespeare's first published work, the narrative poem Venus and Adonis...Fans of historical fiction writers such as Philippa Gregory, Rosalind Miles, and Anne Easter Smith won't want to miss this one." (Library Journal). "Hugely enjoyable, The Tutor is erudite and emotionally intelligent, and the Shakespeare who emerges from the pages may be unexpected, but feels absolutely authentic." (Daily Mail). "Author Andrea Chapin does such a good job of effortlessly blending elements from Elizabethan society, culture, and politics with her characters' development that you forget you're living in the 21st century.
Her sound knowledge of the English Renaissance certainly resounded with this reader." (The Star). "Beautifully imagined and brimming with life and love, passion and peril, The Tutor is a literary treat." (Lancashire Evening Post). "For readers who love Shakespeare, this woman-behind-the-man set-up...will provide a cozy afternoon's pleasure." (The New York Times Book Review). "When young Will Shakespeare (an actor and aspiring poet) begins work as a tutor for a wealthy Catholic family, a well-read widow becomes his muse-and his editor, too.
As Will's editrix falls under the spell of his pretty words, a question lingers: Is he sincere or just a gifted player?
Chapin's debut novel captivates..." (Entertainment Weekly). "An ingenious and captivating historical novel imagines how one woman inspired William Shakespeare...Chapin pulls it off magnificently...It all adds up to a tremendous work of historical fiction.
Not only does Chapin tell a good tale, she brings Shakespeare winningly alive to display 'the curious, brilliant alchemy of his mind." (The Minnesota Star Tribune). "It's always thrilling when a new novelist marches into familiar territory and delivers something refreshingly different.
In this case, Andrea Chapin presents a story of William Shakespeare, a woman every bit his equal, and the relationship that inspires some of his best work.
If you think you know this tale already, The Tutor will prove you wrong in wonderful ways...The Tutor is a rich, beautifully constructed debut novel that will captivate readers of historical fiction and romance alike, and even the most devoted of Shakespeare fans will be thrilled by this new look at The Bard. " (BookPage). "Andrea's writing is brilliant - there's a lot of detail but you don't feel she has picked up a history book and stuck to everything.
When I read historical fiction I want to be transported to another world, not feel like I'm studying non-fiction, and in Andrea's case it's definitely the former." (Hello Magazine Blog). "Chapin's Shakespeare is hypnotic, with piercing eyes and a quicksilver tongue, boisterous but at times appealingly uncertain about his writing.
This impressive debut, sprinkled with nods to Shakespeare's later work, presents a fully realized account of how the glover's son embarked on his writing career." (Booklist). Andrea Chapin has been an editor at art, movie, theatre and literary magazines, including the Paris Review, Conjunctions, and Lincoln Centre Theatre Review.
She has written for various publications including More, Redbook, Town & Country, Self and Martha Stewart Living. Andrea lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two children.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 368 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
- Publication Date: 26/03/2015
- Category: Historical fiction
- ISBN: 9780241968161