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A Midsummer Night's Dream Paperback – September 28, 2009
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“FitzSimmons has come up with a doozy of a sociopath.” —The Washington Post Learn More
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Top Customer Reviews
A piece of magic on the stage or screen--or on the electronic paper!
This is probably Shakespeare's most delightful comedy, and I'm glad I have read it in several editions and seen various versions of the play on large screen, small screen, and stage. I wish schools would teach this instead of trying to get the kids to understand Romeo and Juliet and Julius Caesar. Even if they don't understand this one, they can tell that it's fun and somewhat vulgar, with Bottom running around in an ass's head and the Queen of the Fairies falling in temporary love with him. "Fairy" might not yet have had its most recent meaning, but Bottom in an ass's head suggested exactly the same thing then that it suggests now
While I was getting my doctorate in English, my Shakespeare teacher worshiped Shakespeare instead of enjoying it for what it was worth. She almost went ballistic when somebody pointed out vulgarities and slapstick in the plays, because we too were supposed to worship Shakespeare instead of analyzing him. Sorry, but I was right and she was wrong. Shakespeare was a very bawdy writer, and he enjoyed being bawdy.
DO NOT see the movie Dead Poet's Society without reading or watching this play first.
As for the play, it is a classic comedy. Quite a few moments that had me burst out into laughter! That being said, it is Shakespeare, so nothing will seem funny until you get a firm grasp on the language.
There are many joys to be had in reading (and seeing) “Midsummer”, but unique to reading the play here are just a few reasons why it is worth your attention. First, the introduction by Russ McDonald (Pelican Shakespeare edition) has some really good insights that I have not come across elsewhere. It is well done. As for the play itself, it yields countless joys, among them Act 2:1 where the leaders of the fairy fantastical world (Oberon and his queen Titania) have an epic quarrel. The scene boast some of the loveliest poetry in all of Shakespeare. The imagery is astoundingly fantastic. “Midsummer” actually contains some of the best poetry in the Shakespearean canon period, especially in the characters of Oberon- the King of the fairies, and Duke Theseus. In the hands of talented actors they have moments in the play that are mesmerizing. Act 5 of “Midsummer” is also one of the most pleasing and funny in all of Shakespeare. All of the loose plot lines are tied up; it has gut busting humor, and again that lovely poetry. As one of Shakespeare’s few original plotlines and a play where fantasy and harmony are emphasized, I imagine that the self-justification of art and artists was sometimes in his head as he wrote it. One of the truly remarkable plays of all time.Read more ›
As Athens prepares for the wedding of Theseus and Hippolyta, the fusty Egeus is demanding that his daughter Hermia marry the man he's chosen for her, Demetrius. Her only other options are death or nunhood.
Since she's in love with a young man named Lysander (no, we never learn why her dad hates Lysander), Hermia refuses, and the two of them plot to escape Athens and marry elsewhere. But Helena, a girl who has been kicked to the curb by Demetrius, tips him off about their plans; he chases Hermia and Lysander into the woods, with Helena following him all the way. Are you confused yet?
But on this same night, the fairy king Oberon and his queen Titania are feuding over a little Indian boy. Oberon decides to use a magical "love juice" from a flower to cause some trouble for Titania by making her fall in love with some random weaver named Nick Bottom (whom his henchman Puck has turned into a donkey-headed man). He also decides to have Puck iron out the four lovers' romantic troubles with the same potion. But of course, hijinks ensue.
"A Midsummer Night's Dream" is another one of Shakespeare's plays that REALLY needs to be seen before it's read. Not only is it meant to be seen rather than read, but the tangle of romantic problems and hijinks are a little difficult to follow... okay, scratch that.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a good version of the Shakespeares book it has explainations of the dialog and places for notes. Great for the student needing to read it for schoolPublished 1 month ago by R. Gunner
I like this no fear form of MND!Though the letters are a little not clear,the other is nice!THANXPublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Book looks brand new! Shipping was slower than I hoped, but it's exactly what I wanted!Published 3 months ago by RandomCustomer
This book is hard to comprehend if you are like me. If you're a student, and you're being forced to read this book, it'll be tough for you. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
Hermia is in love with Lysander; unfortunately, she is being forced to marry Demetrius, live the rest of her life as a nun, or die. Read morePublished 3 months ago by The Ultimate Book Geek
The book is almost as boring as watching paint dry and can summed up as a treason against the arts. All the characters are inhuman and unlikeable and the most stupid plot ever. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Amazon Customer