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The Tempest (Signet Classics) Updated Edition
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First, anyone who looks at what Amazon reviewers think of Shakespeare before deciding to buy a Shakespeare play is going about it wrong. I can't even fathom what motivates people to write an Amazon review and say things like "I read this play and it sucked." Good grief, people, this is Shakespeare, the preeminent artist of the English language. You're welcome to your opinions, but I think Shakespeare's reputation will withstand the amazon.com review page.
As for the Arden edition: I've looked at many and read a few different editions, and this one wins for several reasons. The notes are outstanding even for Arden's generally high standards. The editors do a wonderful job not just of clarifying the language but also highlighting in an unobtrusive way the subtleties of the drama.
Better still is their long introduction, which is beautifully written and comprehensive. A very fine work (you'll want to read it *after* you've read the play, of course.)
And I also want to mention that the book itself is incredibly sturdy -- I am hard on books and like all the Ardens, this is one tough book. Very strongly bound with good paper and covers. It seems kind of silly, but that sort of thing matters to me in a book I intend to read more than once.
The Tempest is a play like no other works of Shakespeare. The play starts out with an array of colorful characters, which are easy to loathe or become friendly with through out the play. Page after page of reading, you find out more about the characters lives and roles in the play. The play has, in the beginning, almost all of the characters trapped on a boat in the middle of a tempest (a storm)-hence the name of the play. This being Shakespeare's last play, he hid some messages in the speeches of Prospero. One of these speeches is in the epilogue. The other is in a speech that Prospero recites from a play which Shakespeare took from the famous Greek playwright, Ovid. Shakespeare shows this by saying that he will, "Drown his book" and, " Break his staff" as well as, " Let your indulgence set me free" to hint of Shakespeare's retirement as a playwright. Prospero was my favorite character in the play. He had shown a large display of trickery, genius, and brainpower, to be able to set up the whole scenario of placing the people on the island in such strategic places. I recommend this play because it is one of my favorites, of all the works of Shakespeare. The Tempest is a wonderful play for people of all ages to read, act out, or to just have some fun.
By Andrew Katz, Grade 9
Magic, Power, and Conspiracy are the foundational thematic elements through which Shakespeare effects Prospero's reintegration into human society. Thrown into a boat with his infant daughter Miranda, Prospero comes to live on a nearly deserted island in the Mediterranean Sea. Prospero's concentration on developing his proficiency in Magic caused him to become alienated from his political and social responsibilities in Milan, leading to his expulsion. His brother Antonio conspired with Alonso, king of Naples, and seized the power Prospero forsook for book-learning.
Prospero hears of a sea voyage undertaken by his enemies, and, using his Magic, whips up a storm, a great tempest, which causes his enemies to be shipwrecked on his island. On the island, Prospero exercises total power - over the education of his daughter, his slave, the deformed Caliban, and now over his enemies. He engages Ariel, a sprite, to orchestrate the division of the traveling party, and to put them through various trials to exact vengeance and ultimately, submission from them.
"The Tempest" is a fine effort from Shakespeare, but the power relations in the play are problematic. Prospero's insistent dominance over the action of the play is extremely troubling. Although he is presented as a benevolent character, Prospero's relationships with Miranda, Caliban, and Ferdinand, King Alonso's son, complicate his overall worth as a man and an authority figure.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I needed this for my English class. Easy to navigate through.Published 20 hours ago by Amazon Customer
I bought this for my English class and it worked great. It's small so it's easy to take back and forth to class and it was for a better price than my school bookstore. Read morePublished 3 days ago by Lexy Taylor
If you want a free audiobook of any of Shakespeare's works, go to librivox.org. This sent me through a secondary site and may or may not have installed spyware on my system. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
One of shakespeares best imo. The cover was ripped alittle on arrival, otherwise it appeared to be new as advertisedPublished 1 month ago by Jeffry R Clark
It is Shakespeare. If you like him, you will like this book. If you do not know Shakespeare, this would not be the first work I would have picked for you.Published 2 months ago by Kindle Customer
I had to read this for an English class. There is not a doubt in my mind that Shakespeare must have been drunk and high when he was writing. Read morePublished 4 months ago by MM