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Richard III (Folger Shakespeare Library) Mass Market Paperback – July 1, 2004


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Richard III (Folger Shakespeare Library) + Hamlet ( Folger Library Shakespeare) + Macbeth (Folger Shakespeare Library)
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Product Details

  • Series: Folger Shakespeare Library
  • Mass Market Paperback: 369 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; 1 edition (July 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743482840
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743482844
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 4.1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #72,052 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Thanks to the recent film version, Richard is again a hot property. This Dover Thrift edition is the most economical way to stock extra copies.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Review

"Richard III's stage history is especially interesting and well presented." Bibliotheque Humanisme --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Richard III is one of the ultimate villains, outdone only by Iago, I think.
Alonzo Rumfelt
This version contains good notes, a superb intro, and even illustrations to liven the text!
Kathryn Snyder
Reading this play made me want to go back and read the other Shakespeare history plays.
M. J. Christensen

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Chris Salzer on February 9, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Having never read Richard III, I knew that I would be in for a treat, but nothing quite THIS good. Originally labeled as The Tragedy of Richard III by Shakespeare, one can see, upon reading this enthralling play, why this history/tragedy firmly entrenched itself as one of The Bard's most prolifically performed plays with almost unrivaled longevity due to its immense popularity among the genteel and yeomen alike.
Although the much-maligned humpback King Richard was by no means a saint by any stretch, he was not, however, as wretchedly insidious as Shakespeare might have us believe. In an effort to pander to Queen Elizabeth, Shakespeare cast perhaps an overly morose shadow over the House of York. The play itself, interestingly enough, focuses not so much on the bloody ending of The War of Roses and the ascension to the throne of Henry VII(the grandfather of Elizabeth) as it does on the uncannily cunning connivances of Richard III. Richard's dastardly deeds, the sordid means to his end of usurping the crown, know no limits as he murders any and all who dare get in his way - and even those that don't(I suppose they're guilty by association).
Inextricably, although I by no means empathize with him even remotely, Richard somehow, despite his inordinately decadent reprobate ploys, coupled with his twisted soliloquies pleading to the audience his hopeless case, make him one entirely enigmatic, yet entirely captivating, antagonist that makes this play enticingly enjoyable -- in a most devilish kind of way.
"O coward conscience, how dost thou afflict me!"
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Richard D. Feinman on July 12, 2000
Format: Paperback
This edition has one of the best introductions I've read: informative, well-written and with photos from productions of R III. Just the section on Macbeth and Richard makes this top-notch. Even the Folio/Quarto stuff is interesting -- short and not pedantic. This is my choice for Richard III edition.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By meiringen on September 17, 2000
Format: Audio Cassette Verified Purchase
Stephens is a bit much as Richard (does he have to yell so often?) but the supporting cast, with Michael York in a multitude of roles, Dame Peggy Ashcroft as Margaret, Glenda Jackson as Lady Anne and Jeremy Brett as the Earl of Clarence (for once, the part is done right--Brett comes off as believable, not as a whiny brat as in many portrayals) is fantastic. Unabridged, as another reviewer noted, and digitally remastered, this recording is the best I've come across so far. Highly recommended!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Laszlo Matyas on November 22, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
It may not be Hamlet, but Richard III is still one of the finest works of literature ever created, in any medium. It's a classic piece of Shakespearian (and therefore, literary) character development, full of irony, wordplay, nuance, tension, imagery, and jaw-dropping poetic virtuosity. Shakespeare's Richard III is simply one of the most hypnotic and effectively portrayed characters of all time- he's a calculating, ruthless, cooly charismatic megalomaniac with bitter past and a knack for heroic feats of rhetoric. He's the quintessential antihero, a thoroughly despicable human being who is nonetheless incredibly fun to root for. Witnessing his swift, ruthless rise to power is a sheer visceral rush, and his monologues are deftly conceived works that drip with side poetry, cutting humor, and an almost charming sort of egotism. Reading or watching the play, one feels like they're the wicked king's confidante and co-conspirator, being allowed the unique privilege of peering into the amoral genius' twisted soul. The experience is exciting and cathartic. Of course, there's more to this play than one great character- the plot (which offers a seething glimpse of a chaotic post civil war England) is complex and engrossing, and sees Shakespeare hurling satirical darts at the corruption and pretensions of the nation's leaders. By allowing Richard to succeed by appealing to the greed, lust, and folly of those around him, Shakespeare sends a powerful warning about the cyclical nature and bottomless pitfalls of political villainy and oppression. At the same time, he paints a grim portrait of the ultimate outcomes of greed, egotism, selfishness, vengeance, and megalomania that still rings true to this day (and will probably do so until our species is extinct). Classic.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By R. J. Marsella on September 12, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Shakepeare's Richard is evil and manipulative to such an extreme degree that even his physical deformity cannot match up to the inner deformity that is revealed to the reader/audience in his private soliloquies. Having been portrayed as a conniving usurper to power by Thomas More during the early Tudor era he is actually savaged by Shakespeare and his legacy in historical terms has become one with the characterization that the bard gave us.

Richard is a muderous liar who kills anyone who gets in his way and he is contrasted with the righteously portrayed young Henry VII who returns from France to set things right.

The play is a wonderful read and study in Machiavellian manuevering for powers sake.

From the setting up of his brother Clarence to the murder of the young Princes in the Tower Richard who takes the audience into his confidence gradually becomes as appalling a character as Shakespeare ever created.

Much of what is later revealed of the capacity for people to scheme against their fellows in Claudius and Iago in the respective tragedies of Hamlet and Othello is begun here in Richard III.
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