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The Dark Lady


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Hodder Children's Books


Henry is an orphan, a thief and a genius.

Raised by a powerful witch, Henry is a master pickpocket and spends much of his time reading at the magical apothecary.

But Henry's extraordinary gifts haven't gone unnoticed and when caught stealing, he's forced to work for an influential duke and his secret society of intellectuals.

Working hard to fulfil the duke's relentless pursuit for knowledge, Henry finds solace and a friend in his idol, the young playwright, William Shakespeare.

But it's his mother Henry longs for most.

The Dark Lady is calling - will Henry be able to resist?

Featuring Shakespeare himself and many of his key characters, bringing to life through fresh eyes the visceral, violent and daring world of the Renaissance.

Inspired by the Dark Lady, the black woman at the centre of Shakespeare's sonnets 127-154.

Written by award-winning rapper, poet and writer Akala, founder of the renowned Hip-hop Shakespeare Company.