Shakespeare on Toast (Paperback)
Getting a Taste for the Bard
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Actor, producer and director Ben Crystal revisits his acclaimed book on Shakespeare for the 400th anniversary of his death, updating and adding three new chapters.
Shakespeare on Toast knocks the stuffing from the staid old myth of the Bard, revealing the man and his plays for what they really are: modern, thrilling, uplifting drama.
The bright words and colourful characters of the greatest hack writer are brought brilliantly to life, sweeping cobwebs from the Bard – his language, his life, his world, his sounds, his craft. Crystal reveals man and work as relevant, accessible and alive – and, astonishingly, finds Shakespeare’s own voice amid the poetry.
Whether you’re studying Shakespeare for the first time or you’ve never set foot near one of his plays but have always wanted to, this book smashes down the walls that have been built up around this untouchable literary figure.
Told in five fascinating Acts, this is quick, easy and good for you. Just like beans on toast.
Ben Crystal's excellent book is an ideal way to gain an understanding of why Shakespeare is so brilliant and so enjoyable.
This is a brilliantly enjoyable, light-hearted look at Shakespeare which dispels the myths and makes him accessible to all. I love it!
A recent poll of teenagers found Shakespeare to be the least favourite read of those consulted. Ben Crystal, an actor at The Globe and author of two previous books on the Bard, hopes to change all this. He does so by focusing on the universality and timelessness of Shakespeare's appeal and by unraveling the poetry and its impact on our language, as well as the whole notion of what constitutes 'entertainment' in our times.
A master class for modern beginners and old hands alike.
Having Crystal as a companion through the stickier parts of Hamlet and Macbeth is like going to the theatre with an intelligent friend.
Enjoyable, light-hearted, accessible guide to Shakespeare.
An enthusiastic, accessible and entertaining introduction to Shakespeare.
This book makes the reader want to get to a Shakespeare play as soon as possible to see how much of it has sunk in.
Shakespeare on Toast is reassuring, and appealing, and Crystal's bounding enthusiasm is hard to resist. If, like Crystal, you're a bit of a Shakespeare evangelist, you'll want all your Shakespeare-resistant friends to read it. I'll certainly be buying copies for mine.
[Crystal] is at his best when demonstrating the plays' origins in the demanding world of early modern theatre.
This should be required reading for actors, anyone doing English Literature at school or
university, and the girls who spoiled the performance of The Merry Wives of Windsor I went
to at the Globe this summer by whispering to each other that they couldn't understand a
word. Highly recommended.
Humorous, unpretentious and fascinating.
a surprise hit
Ben Crystal's witty and engaging book is a relaxed, user-friendly reminder that enjoying Shakespeare should be as easy as breathing.
Digestible and informative how-to-guide… Crystal's explanations fizz and sparkle with educated clarity and infectious enthusiasm.
It's a lively and unpretentious attempt to make Shakespeare more accessible to those who are daunted by his status and reputation.
Before you read the play, go and see it. Before you go and see it, read Shakespeare on Toast!