The Rest is Silence is a historical novel told by a young woman who has recently died. In the course of contemplating her life and the fates of her husband and daughters beyond her death, she learns far more about her husband and how he has immortalized her through his writing. Forced into an unhappy marriage with long years of estrangement, Anne Cecil looks beyond her tomb and monument in Westminster Abbey and learns secrets that far outlive her own era. Wed to a man who was compelled to write pseudonymously, Anne was always in the shadow of his melancholy brilliance, his life a lie. His pen name was William Shakespeare. Eventually she realizes much of her personality and character is fueling Edward’s muse in developing female characters in many of his court plays for the queen. These culminate in a portrayal of her as the character Ophelia in the most autobiographical of his dramas, one the world eventually comes to know as Hamlet.