I owe a great debt of gratitude to the many people who helped me research this novel. During my trip to England, I was assisted by the following wonderful volunteers: from the Shakespeare’s Globe Library and Archives, Victoria Northwood; from the National Trust, Kate Wheeldon at Hardwick Hall; and from Historic Royal Palaces, Alison Heald, Susan Holmes at the Tower of London, and Alden Gregory at Hampton Court Palace. (The rooftop scene is his fault.)

I’m also grateful to Kevin Schmidt, for the astrology in Act Three, and to Dr. William Tighe, who taught me everything I know about the Gentlemen Pensioners, and mailed me his dissertation to boot. He is not to be blamed for anything I got wrong.

Finally, I have to thank Kate Walton, for needing someone to keep her awake on a late-night drive to the airport back in June of 2006. It was the first of many fruitful midnight conversations about this story, and it wouldn’t have been the same without her.