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The Merchant of Venice

$11.00

Presents the story of Antonio who risks his life to borrow money from his enemy, Shylock, and is saved by Portia, an heiress posing as a lawyer

The Tempest

$11.00

Putting romance onstage, The Tempest gives us a magician, Prospero, a former duke of Milan who was displaced by his treacherous brother, Antonio. Prospero is exiled on an island, where his only companions are his daughter, Miranda, the spirit Ariel, and the monster Caliban. When his enemies are among those caught in a storm near the island, Prospero turns his power upon them through Ariel and other spirits.The characters exceed the roles of villains and heroes. Prospero seems heroic, yet he enslaves Caliban and has an appetite for revenge. Caliban seems to be a monster for attacking Miranda, but appears heroic in resisting Prospero, evoking the period of colonialism during which the play was written. Miranda’s engagement to Ferdinand, the Prince of Naples and a member of the shipwrecked party, helps resolve the drama.

The authoritative edition of The Tempest from The Folger Shakespeare Library, the trusted and widely used Shakespeare series for students and general readers, includes:

-Freshly edited text based on the best early printed version of the play

-Full explanatory notes conveniently placed on pages facing the text of the play

-Scene-by-scene plot summaries

-A key to the play’s famous lines and phrases

-An introduction to reading Shakespeare’s language

-An essay by a leading Shakespeare scholar providing a modern perspective on the play

-Fresh images from the Folger Shakespeare Library’s vast holdings of rare books

-An annotated guide to further reading

Essay by Barbara A. Mowat

The Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC, is home to the world’s largest collection of Shakespeare’s printed works, and a magnet for Shakespeare scholars from around the globe. In addition to exhibitions open to the public throughout the year, the Folger offers a full calendar of performances and programs. For more information, visit Folger.edu.

Reviews

Gr 3 Up‘The play is set circa 1610. Spirin expands Beneduce’s retelling by basing his lavish watercolors on Italian Renaissance paintings. Though the pages are carefully framed, highly ornate, and formally structured, there is plenty of leeway for individual imagination to make itself felt. Ariel is a decorative Renaissance angel. Caliban is given piscine characteristics and expressions that evoke the longing as much as the brutishness in his character. And the human characters have the complexity of portraits. Spirin’s illustrations highlight the fantastic while Ruth Sanderson’s landscapes for Bruce Coville’s version of the play (Doubleday, 1994) focus on the effects of nature. Both are valid. Coville’s simpler retelling is easier to follow. Beneduce, too, eliminates some of the subplots in order to avoid confusion, but her fuller text manages to incorporate most of the romantic, magical, and political elements. Within the main text, she modernizes the dialogue. This works smoothly for the most part, though it’s hard to see how “What a wonderful new world I am about to enter…” is an improvement over “O brave new world…” A few passages of original text are set off in isolated frames, for a sense of the poetry. Readers and potential playgoers will need to see the play performed to experience the comic scenes of Caliban and his cronies. Brief appendixes explain the context in which the play was written and the reteller’s choices and give an overview of Shakespeare’s life. This is a case in which an acceptably graceful text plays a supporting role to the illustrations. They are worth the price of admission.‘Sally Margolis, formerly at Deerfield Public Library, IL

Prospero-like in their artistry, Spirin’s dazzling watercolors dominate this retelling of Shakespeare’s final play. Shaped like altar panels fit for a Renaissance church or palace, the illustrations are romantic, regal and magical, richly interpreting the play’s themes of betrayal, revenge and all-conquering love. A wispy ethereal air pervades island scenes, beautifully suggesting the atmosphere of enchantment, while Antonio and the King of Naples are pictured in brocade and velvet, the stench of power upon them. The other characters, too, are both otherworldly and very much flesh and blood. Especially well rendered is the monster Caliban, shown here as part man, part beast, part mythical creature, a sense of evil glee lighting his features. While this prose adaptation does not, of course, retain the full magic of the Bard’s work, Beneduce nonetheless provides an intelligent, gripping story. Several passages from Shakespeare introduced at key points give a taste of the original. Symbols and small pictures integrated into the text further enhance the lavish presentation. All ages. (Mar.)

Two of the bard’s heavy dramas join Yale’s wonderful “Annotated Shakespeare” series. Along with a heavily annotated text, each volume includes a scholarly introduction plus notes on the annotations. All that for the price of a Happy Meal; how can you go wrong? Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

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Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction: Work from 1970 to the Present

$38.00 $35.20

From memoir to journalism, personal essays to cultural criticism, this indispensable anthology brings together works from all genres of creative nonfiction, with pieces by fifty contemporary writers including Cheryl Strayed, David Sedaris, Barbara Kingsolver, and more. Selected by five hundred writers, English professors, and creative writing teachers from across the country, this collection includes only the most highly regarded nonfiction work published since 1970. Contributers include: Jo Ann Beard, Wendell Berry, Eula Biss, Mary Clearman Blew, Charles Bowden, Janet Burroway, Kelly Grey Carlisle, Anne Carson, Bernard Cooper, Michael W. Cox, Annie Dillard, Mark Doty, Brian Doyle, Tony Earley, Anthony Farrington, Harrison Candelaria Fletcher, Diane Glancy, Lucy Grealy, William Harrison, Robin Hemley, Adam Hochschild, Jamaica Kincaid, Barbara Kingsolver , Ted Kooser, Sara Levine, E.J. Levy, Phillip Lopate, Barry Lopez, Thomas Lynch, Lee Martin, Rebecca McCLanahan, Erin McGraw, John McPhee, Brenda Miller, Dinty W. Moore, Kathleen Norris, Naomi Shihab Nye, Lia Purpura, Richard Rhodes, Bill Roorbach, David Sedaris, Richard Selzer, Sue William Silverman, Floyd Skloot, Lauren Slater, Cheryl Strayed, Amy Tan, Ryan Van Meter, David Foster Wallace, and Joy Williams.

About the Author

Lex Williford teaches in the bilingual writing program at the University of Texas, El Paso. He previously taught in the writing programs at Southern Illinois University and the University of Alabama. His collection of stories, Macauley’s Thumb, was co-winner of the 1993 Iowa School of Letters Award for Short Fiction. He lives with his wife in El Paso, Texas. Michael Martone has taught at Iowa State University, Harvard University, and Syracuse University. He is currently teaching at the University of Alabama, where he has directed the MFA Program in Creative Writing. Double-wide: Collected Fiction is his eighth book of stories. Racing in Place, his third book of nonfiction, will be published in 2008. He has edited six other volumes of prose including the Touchstone Anthology of Contemporary Creative Nonfiction with Lex Williford. He lives in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

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World Class Thriving at Home in the Global Economy

$13.50 $8.00

The frontier of business growth is shifting from the giants to small and medium-sized enterprises. This book shows how these new pioneers can collaborate, innovate and export. It shows why emerging companies in new technology fields have to be “born global” just to keep their domestic business, why it is so important to act quickly, and how many apparent problems (such as outside ownership of local companies) can be turned to advantage. The book also looks at the development of local communities – cities, boroughs and towns everywhere are developing their own strategic plans and foreign policies – and shows the three ways communities can succeed, explaining how to apply the lessons outlined.