In “Swagger,” fourteen-year-old Quinn is queer in a red state that says people like him should not exist. In the wake of his parents’ divorce, his father has kept his distance and Quinn has taken refuge in the life and plays of his hero William Shakespeare.

The bookish Quinn wishes he could meet this greatest of playwrights, who depicted human nature in all its aspects. He feels Shakespeare would understand him better than his own dad.

When Shakespeare (“Call me Will”) magically appears to the young man and offers to take him back in time and reveal the secrets of his life—including the forbidden love that led him to write “Hamlet”—Quinn can’t resist.

He escapes his life of being “the target of the week” at school and enters the grandeur of the teeming city of Shakespeare’s London in the year 1600.

It is a hardscrabble world filled with over-the-top drama on the stage of the Globe Theatre and off, especially when spymaster Sir Robert Cecil discovers Will’s hidden relationship with the Ambassador from Ethiopia and threatens to bring harm to both of them.

As Quinn’s present collides with his adventures in the historic past, he learns from Will how to stand up for himself and be open to life and the pain of love.