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A Midsummer Night's Dream Paperback – September 28, 2009

4.5 out of 5 stars 123 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for William Shakespeare: Complete Works:“A feast of literary and historical information.” -The Wall Street Journal --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

From the Publisher

This book is perfect for AP classes and is often selected for inclusion on the AP exam. The notes, reading pointers, and vocabulary in this addition will also help students at a lower reading level get the most out of these classics. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 114 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (September 28, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1441427406
  • ISBN-13: 978-1441427403
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.3 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (123 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,588,016 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000JMLOJU/ref=cm_cr_rev_prod_img

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.
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By A Customer on September 11, 1999
Format: Paperback
Okay, so maybe I'm not the world's greatest living expert on Shakespeare, considering the fact that, other than this, I have only read Romeo and Juliet. But hey, I thought it was great. Characters like Bottom and Robin Goodfellow were hilarious. Shakespeare seems to know how to make a tangled mess of everyone's lives very well. It amazes me his power to make that seem funny at times and then seem incredibly sad at others. I have to say, I really enjoyed this comedy better than his tragedy. I'm reading The Taming of The Shrew next. I don't know if I can handle Hamlet or Othello right now. By the way, if you're like me and you need someone to explain Shakespeare's language to you, I highly recommend the New Folger Library Copy with explanations on the opposite page.
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I'm a fan of the layout of Folger Shakespeare Library. The covers are also beautiful, but the play on the right, explanation of archaic terms on the left style is very helpful to the reader and makes getting into Shakespeare much easier.

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.
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I absolutely love these Folger Shakespeare Library editions. They have the real Shakespearean language on one page and helpful interpretations on the other page. Face it, there are just some words that aren't in use anymore or that are used in a completely different manner now than they were then. These books help you realize the true meanings behind the words so you can better notice Shakespeare's wit & double meanings in his word choices. I've always been a fan of Shakespeare's stories, but was never able to understand everything in a play. Now if I'm confused, I just look to the left & I can better find my way through it so I enjoy it on a deeper level. I used these for a level 300 college course. They don't dumb it down, they just help you find the modern meaning. Very helpful.
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“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” is one of Shakespeare’s most produced plays, but it also has the distinction of being quite good. This play exudes in the joys to be had in romping through the realms that we can never truly understand or explain. Realms like love, our dreams, fantasy, etc. It is a funny and clever play, and Shakespeare gives the reader a master class in interweaving three separate plotlines in a manner that is nicely and appropriately done.
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.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
It's neither the best nor worst of Shakespeare's many comedies, but "A Midsummer Night's Dream" definitely holds one honor -- it's the most fantastical of his works. This airy little comedy is filled with fairies, spells, love potions and romantic mixups, with only the bland human lovers making things a little confusing (who's in love with whom again?).

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.
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