Reading Shakespeare's Sonnets by Don Paterson
A New Commentary

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Shakespeare's Sonnets are as important and vital today as they were when first published four hundred years ago. Perhaps no collection of verse before or since has so captured the imagination of readers and lovers; certainly no poem has come under such intense critical scrutiny, and presented the reader with such a bewildering number of alternative interpretations. In this illuminating and often irreverent guide, Don Paterson offers a fresh and direct approach to the Sonnets, asking what they can still mean to the twenty-first century reader.In a series of fascinating and highly entertaining commentaries placed alongside the poems themselves, Don Paterson discusses the meaning, technique, hidden structure and feverish narrative of the Sonnets, as well as the difficulties they present for the modern reader. Most importantly, however, he looks at what they tell us about William Shakespeare the lover - and what they might still tell us about ourselves.Full of energetic analysis, plain-English translations and challenging mini-essays on the craft of poetry - not to mention some wild speculation - this approachable handbook to the Sonnets offers an indispensable insight into our greatest Elizabethan writer by one of the leading poets of our own day.

About Don Paterson

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Don Paterson was born in Dundee in 1963. He is the author of Nil Nil (1993), God's Gift to Women (1997) - winner of both the T. S. Eliot Prize and the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize - and Landing Light (2003), which won both the T. S. Eliot Prize and the Whitbread Prize for Poetry. Rain, his most recent collection, won the Forward Prize for Best Collection in 2009, the same year that he was awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry.
Published April 1, 2012 by Faber & Faber. 528 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Reading Shakespeare's Sonnets

The Guardian

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The problem with reading Shakespeare's sonnets is the sonnets themselves, by which I mean their reputation.

Oct 15 2010 | Read Full Review of Reading Shakespeare's Sonnets...

By continually placing the sonnets in this contemporary frame - one evokes a "Jimmy Webb B-side", another plants Carmen Miranda in his mind and one is given to a soap-style makeover - overlaid with playfulness and outrageous speculation (the stuff he terms a writer's "birthright") he throws eggs ...

Nov 26 2010 | Read Full Review of Reading Shakespeare's Sonnets...

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