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Leon Garfield's Shakespeare Stories (New York Review Books Children's Collection) Hardcover – November 3, 2015
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From School Library Journal
Gr 4 Up—In this collection essential, first published in 1985, Garfield relates 21 of Shakespeare's most famous works in language that is accessible but never condescending or out of spirit with the Bard's original Elizabethan text. Leagues above CliffsNotes-style guides, Garfield manages to relay the tales of Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, Julius Caesar, and more with grace and a masterly understanding of his audience. A must-have resource for any library supporting the study of Shakespeare and his works.—Kiera Parrott, School Library Journal
"In these lively and evocative pages a child will hear Shakespeare’s poetry set in prose that will lay the groundwork for many a future enchanted evening at the theater.” –Meghan Cox Gurdon, The Wall Street Journal
"Leon Garfield’s performance in Shakespeare Stories is masterly. The Merchant of Venice, The Taming of the Shrew, Twelfth Night, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream best reveal the virtuosity Mr. Garfield has developed in many years of writing dozens of children’s books and historical novels. In Mr. Garfield’s deft narratives the laughter is the same that one finds in the plays, but so is the uneasiness. He gets the balances right." —D. J. R. Bruckner, The New York Times
"Here is an alternative to yellow study guides, one in which explication is available in the graceful prose. Garfield’s seamless movement between his own descriptive language and Shakespeare’s has never worked better." —Sally Margolis, School Library Journal
"The most accessible introduction to the Bard ever." —Woman & Home
Top customer reviews
I was hoping for a preface, a foreword, an introduction, something from the author or the editors on the book -- just some talking points, but nothing. It jumps right into the stories. Sort of feels like "Grimm's Fairy Tales." I think the book deserved a bit more than that -- a four-page introduction would have been nice.
Having said that, the book jumps right into the stories and the little I have read, the author seems to have done a good job. It looks like everyday prose, but the dialogue: direct quotes from the Shakespeare plays.
The best thing about the book: textbook size so easily carried and held by little hands. Not the big coffee-table book one might expect.
No dust jacket.
I give it 5-star with qualifications because I doubt there is a better book for the intended audience out there and I don't want to scare off any potential buyers by giving it a 4. If you can find something better for middle school students, let me know.