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Ill Met by Moonlight by Sarah A. Hoyt
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Ill Met by Moonlight (edition 2001)

by Sarah A. Hoyt (Author)

Series: Shakespeare (Book 1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
240888,040 (3.41)17
"When his wife and newborn daughter disappear, young Will Shakespeare is drawn into a realm beyond imagination - and beyond reality. Held captive by the devious ruler of the elves and fairies, Shakespeare's family appears lost to him forever. But an alluring elf named Quicksilver takes a fancy to Shakespeare - and sees a chance to set things right. Can a mere schoolteacher win his wife back from a king? Or will Shakespeare fall prey to his own desires - and the cunning schemes of the unpredictable elf?"--BOOK JACKET.… (more)
Member:randibsimon
Title:Ill Met by Moonlight
Authors:Sarah A. Hoyt (Author)
Info:Ace Hardcover (2001), Edition: 1st, 288 pages
Collections:Your library
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Ill Met by Moonlight by Sarah A. Hoyt

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» See also 17 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
I couldn’t help but pick this book up: a Shakespeare historical fiction with fae? Yes, please. I figured it would be kind of silly, but at least entertaining, and it was that.

Shakespeare gets home to find that his wife and daughter have been captured; he finds out that the local fae king is responsible and works to get his family back. Overall, I thought this was a fun read. It’s entertaining and I love the idea of fae elements inspiring Shakespeare. Quicksilver is a fantastic character and I hope we get to see more of him in future books. I enjoyed seeing his character growth throughout the book. It was also fun to be introduced to the area where Shakespeare might have lived, and I always enjoy reading new takes on fae lore.

I did have a few issues with it, though. There were a few too many direct quotes from Shakespeare’s works to make me take it too seriously. Also, not much really happens. It’s a lot of internal growth and internal thought, which is fine, but when you have a battle between Shakespeare and the fae king, I want just a tiny bit more action. I’m also not a huge fan of how most of the female characters are portrayed. Maybe it’s just looking at them through Will’s or Quicksilver’s eyes, but they were not given complex roles at all. They were either very mean or simpering, which was unfortunate.

However, I still found this enjoyable and I’m interested to see what adventure awaits in the sequel. It’s a bit of a different take on both fantasy and historical fiction, so I love it for the uniqueness if nothing else.

Also posted on Purple People Readers. ( )
  sedelia | Aug 21, 2019 |
Who was Shakespeare's Dark Lady, and where did he get some of his most memorable lines? Hoyt tells a tale of a power struggle amongst the elves, in which young Will Shakespeare (he's just nineteen at this point) and his family get sideswiped.

Quicksilver, a young elf who is mostly male but sometimes female, is the rightful heir to the throne of the elvish kingdom, but he's been displaced by his elder brother. This seems reasonable, when we first meet them, because while the brother's arrogant, Quicksilver is entirely self-absorbed, unable to see beyond his own wants and his own "rights," without the slightest regard for duty, responsibility, or the feelings of others. Any ra tional set of noblemen would have preferred the arrogant Sylvanus to the wholly irresponsible Quicksilver--especially since they don't know that Sylvanus murdered his parents, Oberon and Titania.

Sylvanus had taken a human wife, and the wife has now died, leaving an infant daughter in need of a wetnurse. To fill this need, the king has kidnapped another human woman with a young daughter--Nan Shakespeare, and baby Susanna. He also intends that Nan will be his new wife, a plan that doesn't please Nan. When Quicksilver meets the worried Will Shakespeare, looking for his missing wife and child, the young elf has the beginnings of a plan to get his revenge on his brother and regain his rightful place in the elvish scheme of things. Quicksilver needs someone else to strike the fatal blow against his brother, because whoever strikes that blow will die. Impetuous young Will, eager to be a man in the support and protection of his young family, will be easily persuaded, and not know enough to ask the right questions. It's a neat scheme, which will cost him nothing; the human will die, but human lives are so short anyway, that doesn't matter. Quicksilver presents himself to Shakespeare as the Lady Silver, and promises to help him regain his family in exchange for his help in avenging "her" parents' deaths.

And, of course, things immediately stop being neat. Quicksilver, despite his extreme self-involvement, does have a few real friends, especially the lovely Ariel and her brother Pyrite, and Ariel in particular attempts t o give him good advice. Will Shakespeare is a genuinely decent young man, who wants to help the distressed Lady Silver even while keeping focussed on trying to get his wife back from the elf king. The more Quicksilver has to pay attention to other people in order to get them to play their assigned parts in his scheme, the more he starts to see a reflection of himself in their eyes, and it isn't pretty.

I think it's fair to say that Quicksilver gets the kicking around he deserves in this story., while other characters do the growing up that they need to do. Interestingly, the only false notes I found were the intrusions of Shakespeare's lines into the mouths of the elves at critical moments. It's a clever touch, I suppose, but I think in this case it was a little too clever for an otherwise delightful book. ( )
  LisCarey | Sep 19, 2018 |
This historical fantasy combines two subjects that I absolutely love - Will Shakespeare and Fae. However, it was so slow that I just couldn't really get into it. The climax was good, but the rising action was a very gradual slope that did not make for exciting reading. ( )
  bookwyrmm | Apr 1, 2013 |
Ann Hathaway has been kidnapped by the evil King of the Fairies, to be his nursemaid and consort. Will Shakespeare to the rescue!

I don’t play the ‘C’ card all that often but … I have cancer, and life is too short for this shit. I gave it three chapters, you can’t say fairer than that. ( )
  phoebesmum | Apr 13, 2012 |
William Shakespeare, aged 19 or 20, a small-town schoolteacher, comes home one day to find his wife Nan and his infant daughter gone. A small log lies in baby Susannah's crib, giving him the only clue to their whereabouts: they've been snatched by the Fair Folk.

Quicksilver, heir of Oberon and Titania, comes home to find his his parents murdered and his throne usurped by his brother, Sylvanus. He enlists young Will in a scheme of revenge, with Nan as both bait and reward.

Alternating between happenings in the world of Faerie and events in Stratford-upon-Avon, we follow Will's desperate search for Nan, Quicksilver's desperate quest for vengeance, and Nan's indoctrination into the ways of the Fey.

It's possible I might have liked this book better had I read it in one sitting. It's a short thing, less than 300 pages, but even at that it felt too long. None of the chief characters, save Nan, engendered much sympathy. Quicksilver especially annoyed me -- arrogant, duplicitous, selfish, and self-righteous, he had no qualms about using and deceiving a "mere mortal" to his own ends, and I never quite bought the idea that he fell in love with Will. Will, even given some leeway for his youth, seemed much too wishy-washy and easily led. Only Nan seemed to have any strength of character.

Still, on the whole, it's not a bad story, a decent way to spend a few hours if you don't have anything better to read.
  avanta7 | Sep 4, 2011 |
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"When his wife and newborn daughter disappear, young Will Shakespeare is drawn into a realm beyond imagination - and beyond reality. Held captive by the devious ruler of the elves and fairies, Shakespeare's family appears lost to him forever. But an alluring elf named Quicksilver takes a fancy to Shakespeare - and sees a chance to set things right. Can a mere schoolteacher win his wife back from a king? Or will Shakespeare fall prey to his own desires - and the cunning schemes of the unpredictable elf?"--BOOK JACKET.

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