O'Connor chronicles the dark despair of the act of writing itself through the lens of London's famous Lyceum Theater. A book-within-a-book of the highest caliber, it treads the boards from the dazzling spectacle of Shakespeare to the quiet desperation of everyday life. It's also occasionally, as befits a story of Dracula's creator, creepingly spooky... Very good reading as the nights (hopefully) turn to chilly autumn. Shadowplay made me laugh, weep, and most importantly, begat a sense of intimately knowing its real-life muses: Abraham Stoker, Ellen Terry, and and Henry Irving.— From Amanda's Selections
Set during the golden age of West End theater in a lamp-lit London shaken by the crimes of Jack the Ripper, Shadowplay is a gripping novel of love, celebrity, and ambition by New York Times best-selling author, Joseph O'Connor.
Henry Irving is Victorian London's most celebrated actor and theater impresario. As Irving's Lyceum theater grows in reputation, he first lures to his company a young Dublin clerk harboring literary ambitions by the name of Bram Stoker, and then entices the century's most beloved actress, the dazzlingly talented leading lady Ellen Terry, who nightly casts a spell not only on her audiences but on Stoker and Irving both.
Bram Stoker's extraordinary experiences at the Lyceum Theatre inspire him to write Dracula, the most iconic and best-selling supernatural tale ever published.