King of Shadows

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
King of Shadows cover.jpg
Gregory cover of Puffin paperback ed. (2000)
AuthorSusan Cooper
Cover artistBill Gregory (depicted)[1]
CountryUS, UK
GenreChildren's historical novel, timeslip fantasy
PublisherMargaret K. McElderry, US, Bodley Head, UK
Publication date
October 1999, November 1999
Media typePrint (hardcover)
Pages186 pp, 181 pp[1]
LC ClassPZ7.C7878 Ki 1999[2]

King of Shadows is a children's historical novel by Susan Cooper published in 1999 by Penguin In the United Kingdom, it was a finalist for both the Carnegie Medal and the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize.


Nathan Field is recruited by Arby. Arby is a producer itending on reenacting A Midsummer's Night's Dream play in London at the re-built Globe theatre the way they were done 400 years ago. The company of boys is said to be the best, from all over America the boys are chosen to play. He is chosen to be Puck in a Midsummer Night's Dream. However, he suddenly falls ill and is taken to the hospital, feared to have acting nerves. The night before he goes to the hospital, he dreams of being tossed high above the earth and then pulled firmly back. He wakes up in a different room with a boy talking to him in a heavy Elizabethan accent. He has traveled back 400 years in time, to the year 1599, when the Globe Theatre was first built. He meets William Shakespeare and acts with him in the play he had rehearsed for in his own time, and experiences theater as it was originally intended. Before he knows it, he is back in the hospital bed, awake and unsure whether what he experienced was real. Later, Rachel Levin and Gil Warmun, his co-actors from the present time, try to find out who he was 400 years ago.


'Nathan Field, a talented young actor, arrives at the newly rebuilt Globe theatre in London to play Puck in A Midsummer's Night's dream. As rehearsals begin, eerie echoes of the past begin to haunt Nat and he falls ill with a mysterious sickness. When he wakes, Nat finds himself in 1599, an actor at the original Globe - and his co-star is none other than the King of Shadows himself: William Shakespeare. Nat's new life is full of excitement, danger, and the passionate friendship that he has longed for since the tragic death of his parents. But why has he been sent to the past - and is he trapped there forever?


Nathan 'Nat' Field, the main character of the story.


Arby, Gil Warmun, Rachel Levin, Mr.Fisher, Aunt Jen, Pudding Face, Alexander Hamilton Eric, Ferdie, David Roper, Ray Danza, Joe Wilson, Alan Wong.


Richard Burbage, William Shakespeare, Roper, Queen Elizabeth I, Will Kempe, Richard Mulcaster, Harry, Sam and Henry Condell

Characters as characters in the play[edit]


Nat as Puck.

Gil as Oberon.

David Roper as Bottom.

Ray Danza as Theseus.

Joe Wilson as Hippolyta.

Alan Wong as Titania.

Eric as Fairy.


King of Shadows was adapted for the stage in 2005 and first performed by the New York State Theatre Institute (NYSTI) starring P. J. Verhoest as Nat, David Bunce as Shakespeare, John Romeo as Burbage, and Aaron Marquise as Roper.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b King of Shadows title listing at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database (ISFDB). Retrieved 2013-03-14. Select a title to see its linked publication history and general information. Select a particular edition (title) for more data at that level, such as a front cover image or linked contents.
  2. ^ "King of shadows" (U.S. edition). Library of Congress Catalog Record. Retrieved 2013-03-14.

External links[edit]