I bought myself a new copy of the complete works of Shakespeare because I have a lot of coursework going on at the moment and frankly I felt sorry for myself.
Most students go and get wrecked to unwind, I read the Bard. Oh my life.
Anyway, it is the RSC edition edited by Johnathan Bate and Eric Rasmussen. Firstly, it is beautiful. I got the paperback version purely because of price but I think it would be even nicer in hardback. I paid roughly £12 on Amazon. Hardback is inbetween £27 and £35.
IT IS WORTH EVERY PENNY.
It is set out nicely, I love the thin pages. There is a little footer at the end of every page giving context and definitions. At the start of every play there is a little summary with key facts, major parts, context, etc. It is so well done I can’t even describe it. It is actually a joy to flick through this book.
The font is quite small, and it may annoy some readers, but personally I think it is the perfect size.
At the end are his sonnets (not my favourite, boo) and then a very handy index of plays.
What I think is novel, is the pictures at the very front of the book. They have the standard ones of Shakespeare but also ones of old versions of his plays, modern versions, japanese versions. It is very inspiring.
I am one of those people that think every household (or room, for that matter) should contain a copy of a Shakespeare play, doesn’t matter which ones although I always opt for Henry V, Merchant of Venice, Othello and Macbeth.
This would be a brilliant book sitting on a coffee table, looking a lil bit pretty and easy to flick through when the mood suits you.
FAB. FAB. FAB.