- Paperback: 349 pages
- Publisher: UPNE; 3rd ed. edition (January 1, 2000)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1584650222
- ISBN-13: 978-1584650225
- Product Dimensions: 4.8 x 1 x 7.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 13 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #692,905 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Book of Forms: A Handbook of Poetics 3rd ed. Edition
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Since 1968 Lewis Turco's Book of Forms has been a staple in the libraries of writers, teachers, poets, and others who care about the craft of poetry. The 160-page first edition was followed in 1986 by the 292-page New Book of Forms, reprinted six times and one of UPNE's Top Ten Best Sellers. Now Turco has expanded and updated his classic once again, adding many new forms, including the ghazal, rubliw, double dactyl, various Japanese forms other than the haiku and tanka, Clerihew, amphigory, backwoods boast, and quaternion. Twenty percent larger than before, it now includes six in-depth prosodic essays and an entirely new discussion of the rules of scansion, never before formulated in such a simple system and not available in any other handbook.
The Elements of Poetry section has been reorganized in three genres: Dramatic Poetry, Lyric Poetry, and Narrative Poetry. Many new poems from all of English and American literature have been added or substituted in order to provide clear examples of all terms and forms to be found in the book. In short, no handbook ever published in the English language is as complete and helpful as the third edition of The Book of Forms.
From the Publisher
5 x 7 1/2 trim. LC 99-39099
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For beginners, Turco's Book of Forms will become your best companion, your most useful and valued discovery, always at hand to answer your questions on form and the workings of language in poetry. No question you have is dumb. Your wilderness isn't trackless any more--Turco has been there and helps you take the direction you want. The book is supportive and informative in tone as well as in factual information.
When the first edition came out in 1968, I was taking a poetry workshop where one of the workshop leaders mentioned this new handbook ... a tad different from the Deutsch and perhaps others? we'd seen. Turco's Book of Forms delighted me by including, not just the familiar information on sonnets, triolets, and villanelles ... it talked of forms I'd never encountered--Welsh and Irish forms-- that opened whole new worlds of possibilities in writing. But there was one lack in that earliest edition-- there were no poem-examples, only schematics.
Later editions remedied that lack; and this fourth edition goes even further, being at the cutting edge of creation where ideas are born, illustrating forms writers are in the very act of creating right now. It makes exciting reading.
This isn't the kind of book you would read cover to cover like a novel or anything, but it's a very valuable reference. I'm an English major with a creative writing emphasis, and I have had a great time working with this book!
Some reviewers have complained that the book is hard to find information in, but I have had my edition for many years and have not found that to be the case. One reviewer complained about the quality of the original poems Turco uses to illustrate unusual forms (and did not pick up on the fact that Wesli Court is an anagram of Lewis Turco, so there are even more poems by Turco than it first appears), but keep in mind that those poems are there to illustrate the form, not to compete with Dryden or Swinburne. And they are VERY helpful--I would much rather have them there than not.
An absolutely indispensible book.