A retelling of Shakespeare's tragic romance from the perspective of Juliet's closest caregiver follows the experiences of a grieving mother who becomes a wet nurse to a powerful family's daughter and who learns her employer's darkest secrets as the girl comes of age.
The International Bestseller 'Lois Leveen's richly detailed, fascinating novel offers a wholly original and intriguing take on one of Shakespeare's most beloved plays' (New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini).In Verona, a city ravaged by plague and political rivalries, a mother mourning the death of her day-old infant enters the household of the powerful Cappelletti family to become the wet-nurse to their newborn baby. As she serves her beloved Juliet over the next fourteen years, the nurse learns the Cappellettis' darkest secrets. Those secrets'and the nurse's deep personal grief'erupt across five momentous days of love and loss that destroy a daughter, and a family. By turns sensual, tragic, and comic, Juliet's Nurse gives voice to one of literature's most memorable and distinctive characters, a woman who was both insider and outsider among Verona's wealthy ruling class. Exploring the romance and intrigue of interwoven loyalties, rivalries, jealousies, and losses only hinted at in Shakespeare's play, this is a never-before-heard tale of the deepest love in Verona'the love between a grieving woman and the precious child of her heart. In the tradition of Sarah Dunant, Philippa Gregory, and Geraldine Brooks, Juliet's Nurse is a rich prequel that reimagines the world's most cherished tale of love and loss, suffering and survival.