Shakespeare for Every Day of the Year edited by Allie Esiri

Shakespeare for Every Day of the Year

Shakespeare for Every Day of the Year by Allie Esiri

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Beautifully produced, this is something to wallow in. Shakespeare for Every Day of the Year does precisely what it says on the tin; three hundred and sixty five extracts from Shakespeare for every day of the year. It cover “sonnets, soliloquies, quotes and extracts” and rather delightfully pairs these with a little note of introduction for the relevant time of the year. So, for example, February 14th sees sonnet 29 “When, in disgrace with fortune and men’s eyes” and a paragraph talking about how Valentine’s Day was handled in Shakespeare’s, er, day. April 1st sees a witty extract from As You Like It whilst November 5th sees Macbeth and Lady Macbeth discuss their plot to bring down the King.

It’s an honest, unflinching volume this, which covers not only the bright fame and glory of Shakespeare’s more popular work but also the darkness as well. As such, some extracts might need contextualising with parents or adults before fully being understood or even read. I suspect something like this might work rather brilliantly in an educational context, with the teacher picking and choosing the passages to support the relevant classes. That’s not to say that it won’t work well for home, especially when read in company, (because, as we can see in this video, Shakespeare gives something for every age ). It’s a book to share and talk about and discuss and argue over and fall in love with.

It’s really rather beautifully done.

I’m grateful to the publisher for a review copy.

View all my reviews

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