“The Life of Henry the Fifth,” from The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

I think there's not much to say about this play that hasn't already been said by ardent fans of Shakespeare. I did find it surprising that Henry himself (sorry, "King Harry" in the casting) didn't have as large a part as I imagined he would have in his own play. Then again, that seems par … Continue reading “The Life of Henry the Fifth,” from The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

“The Life and Death of King John,” From The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

I wasn't sure what to make of this play. I didn't even know Shakespeare had written a play about King John (Richard the Lionheart's brother) until I picked up this book and the book Shakespeare's English Kings. I'd never heard of the play being performed, or anything. So I was just as surprised to see … Continue reading “The Life and Death of King John,” From The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

“The Tragedy of King Richard the Second,” From The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

So, now we've drifted back to the events that helped lead up to the contention between the houses of York and Lancaster, with the rise of the Lancasters in this one (and for a few more). For fans of The Hollow Crown--King Richard uses this particular phrase to good effect, actually, in this play. The Tragedy … Continue reading “The Tragedy of King Richard the Second,” From The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

“Henry VI: Part One,” From The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

My Copy: 9780199267170 Heavens, this is a tricky one to read, and my love of history is clashing with The Bard's words as he takes liberties with British history and the timing of battles and characters. This play features very little of Henry VI again, but features plenty of others who will create the chaos and … Continue reading “Henry VI: Part One,” From The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

“Richard Duke of York (or, Henry VI, Part III),” from The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

My Copy: 9780199267170 I admit, this might be the third (and last) part of Henry VI's reign in a historical context, and the near-middle of Richard III's, but boy, it sure was a long bridge to it. Richard Duke of York (or, Henry VI, Part III) is all about transition. The "Richard" in the title is … Continue reading “Richard Duke of York (or, Henry VI, Part III),” from The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works, by W. Shakespeare

A Year of Shakespeare–Tackling the Bard’s works one at a time from “The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works (2nd ed.)”, ed. by Stanley Wells & Gary Taylor

My Copy: 9780199267170 (image from amazon.com) Well, it'll be closer to "finished by Thanksgiving," but "Year of Shakespeare" has that rhyme thing that sounds better...and if I fall behind it may well BE a year. I've had an awkward relationship with Shakespeare's works from day 1. It kinda sucks when the only way you have … Continue reading A Year of Shakespeare–Tackling the Bard’s works one at a time from “The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works (2nd ed.)”, ed. by Stanley Wells & Gary Taylor

Truth Stranger than Fiction: Father Henson’s Story of His Own Life, by Josiah Henson

My copy: 9781435108387 (image from abebooks.com) This particular work has sat on my shelf since I took my last Antebellum South class in school, but I hadn't had the chance to read it yet. I find it more spiritual than other runaway-slave narratives, and it's relatively short. You'd have to be from another planet (or … Continue reading Truth Stranger than Fiction: Father Henson’s Story of His Own Life, by Josiah Henson