William Shakespeare (1564-1616) is widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language. His surviving works consist of 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems and several other poems. His plays have been translated into every major living language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright. // Richard Appignanesi graduated with a doctorate in classical art history. He was a founder and co-director of the Writers & Readers Publishing Cooperative and Icon Books, where he originated the internationally acclaimed Introducing series. His own best-selling titles written for that series include Freud, Postmodernism and Existentialism. He is the author of the fiction trilogy Italia Perversa (Stalin's Orphans, The Mosque and Destroying America) and the novel Yukio Mishima's Report to the Emperor. He has served as a curator of art exhibitions, university lecturer and conference organiser for the British Council. He is currently associate editor of the art and culture journal Third Text and reviews editor of the policy and futures studies journal Futures. // ILYA's work has been published by Marvel, DC and Dark Horse in the USA, Kodansha in Japan, and numerous independent companies worldwide. His previous books include the award-winning graphic novel series The End of the Century Club, It's Dark in London (for SelfMadeHero), and the kitchen sink drama Skidmarks. His Illustration clients include the BBC, the Royal Academy of Arts, The Times and the Guardian newspapers, and most recently East End Life, for whom he crafts a regular strip. ILYA edits the Mammoth Book of Best New Manga series. His first and most recent publication is a novel, The Clay Dreaming [Myriad Editions, 2011].