To which my answer is definitely ‘buy!’ If there’s someone you know who loves Shakespeare or if you love the Bard yourself, Shakespeare: the Life, the Works, the Treasures is a treasure trove of fascinating background material on his world and his writings. Discussions of Shakespeare’s likely inspirations and how his plays have been interpreted down the ages offer endless insights to the theater lover as well as the historian.
Shakespeare’s baptism record, marriage bond, and will; King James I’s patent allowing Shakespeare and his actors the right to perform their plays throughout the country; tickets from the opening of the Swan Theatre, and a great deal more.
The list price is $50.00, which isn’t at all a bad deal. But why pay that much when amazon.com has it available for $31.50? That’s a deal the Merchant of Venice would recommend!