• Shakespeare's Library

  • Unlocking the Greatest Mystery in Literature
  • By: Stuart Kells
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 8 hrs and 42 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (63 ratings)

Try our newest plan – access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks, and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Plus plan is $7.95 a month after 30 day trial. Upgrade or cancel anytime.
Buy for $18.16

Buy for $18.16

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

From acclaimed author and ardent bibliophile Stuart Kells comes an exploration of the quest to find the personal library of the world's greatest writer.

Millions of words of scholarship have been expended on the world's most famous author and his work. And yet a critical part of the puzzle, Shakespeare's library, is a mystery. For four centuries people have searched for it: in mansions, palaces, and libraries; in riverbeds, sheep pens, and partridge coops; and in the corridors of the mind. Yet no trace of the Bard's manuscripts, books, or letters has ever been found. 

The search for Shakespeare's library is much more than a treasure hunt. Knowing what the Bard read informs our reading of his work, and it offers insight into the mythos of Shakespeare and the debate around authorship. The library's fate has profound implications for literature, for national and cultural identity, and for the global Shakespeare industry. It bears on fundamental principles of art, identity, history, meaning, and truth.

Unfolding the search like the mystery story that it is, acclaimed author Stuart Kells follows the trail of the hunters, taking us through different conceptions of the library and of the man himself. Entertaining and enlightening, Shakespeare's Library is a captivating exploration of one of literature's most enduring enigmas.

©2019 Stuart Kells (P)2019 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What listeners say about Shakespeare's Library

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    36
  • 4 Stars
    17
  • 3 Stars
    7
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    2
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    45
  • 4 Stars
    11
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    1
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    30
  • 4 Stars
    20
  • 3 Stars
    6
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    1

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Dry beginning, engrossing evidence & logic

This might be better read than listened in the bibliographical opening few chapters. But required background info that lays out the evidence does ramp up to a very convincing case for Shakespeare’s authorship. I listened twice!!

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Misleading title - stratfordian apologist

Sad Stratfordian clone who can’t get off the authorship debate and can’t admit there is any debate at all. The “library” title comically masks the obvious theme that everyone who doubts the Stratford man is reprehensibly illogical. And that every empty inference that supports the Stratford candidate should be compelling even to the most delusional “heretic”.

The first step in dealing with one’s Stratfordian fanaticism is to admit that the debate is real.

Sadly, Kells cannot.

Still an interesting text with some updates about the debate, though it is all made suspect by his…. Issues.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Horrible

Doesn't deserve a long review. Boring until it gets insulting to the reader's intelligence. Hot garbage from start to finish.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • DM
  • 03-30-22

Wow, mind blown. Shakespeare is real, right?

Until I read this book I had no idea there is a world of scholarship out there that doubts the man we know as William Shakespeare actually wrote all the stuff we credit him with.
There is a lot of evidence to cast significant doubt.
I was amazed at all the information we do or do not have about this man.
Most biography are sheer conjecture.
Talk about a Mandela Effect.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A long, tangled tale

This book is stuffed with facts and information. Not a stone left unturned or investigated in the never ending search for The Bards library. Not for anyone with a mere passing interest of Shakespeare. A lot to absorb.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Dismissed Mary Sidney Herbert without explanation

If the author was looking for the Shakespeare library, he had only to read the book by Robin P. Williams "Sweet Swan of Avon: Did a woman write Shakespeare?" That book includes evidence of the books owned by Mary Sidney Herbert and acquired very near the time when the plays of Shakespeare derived from such books were written. Mary Sidney Herbert was an acclaimed translator and poet. Her brother Phillip Sidney was an author of Sonnets. It is unfortunate that the author pursued other potential authors in great detail but dismissed Mary Sidney Herbert with a brief sentence. Could he not bear the thought that the works of Shakespeare were authored by a woman who used Shakespeare as a front man since she couldn't have published them herself due to her station in society and as a woman? I suggest that he revise his book and give Mary Sidney Herbert serious consideration.

20 people found this helpful