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Macbeth
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About the Author

William Shakespeare was born in April 1564 in the town of Stratford-upon-Avon, on England's Avon River. When he was eighteen, he married Anne Hathaway. The couple had three children-an older daughter Susanna and twins, Judith and Hamnet. Hamnet, Shakespeare's only son, died in childhood. The bulk of Shakespeare's working life was spent in the theater world of London, where he established himself professionally by the early 1590s. He enjoyed success not only as a playwright and poet, but also as an actor and shareholder in an acting company. Although some think that sometime between 1610 and 1613 Shakespeare retired from the theater and returned home to Stratford, where he died in 1616, others believe that he may have continued to work in London until close to his death.

Barbara A. Mowat is Director of Research emerita at the Folger Shakespeare Library, Consulting Editor of Shakespeare Quarterly, and author of The Dramaturgy of Shakespeare's Romances and of essays on Shakespeare's plays and their editing.

Paul Werstine is Professor of English at the Graduate School and at King's University College at Western University. He is a general editor of the New Variorum Shakespeare and author of Early Modern Playhouse Manuscripts and the Editing of Shakespeare and of many papers and articles on the printing and editing of Shakespeare's plays.

Reviews

Gr 5-8-These visually appealing, full-color adaptations introduce each title with a well-known quotation from the original work on an illustrated spread that captures the mood and setting of the piece. The stories are retold in panels with text containing an explanation of the characters' motives and a summary of the action taking place positioned beneath each panel. Brief snippets of quotations are enclosed within a few simple speech bubbles. Actual wording from the original works is very limited. Headings at the top of the spreads distill the plot essentials contained on those two pages. Macbeth uses extensive footnotes on each page to define and clarify Shakespearean language. Dramatic outdoor scenes are done in vivid colors, contrasting with night scenes rendered in gray tones. Unique features include historical information on the real King Macbeth and theatrical superstitions associated with what many actors consider an "unlucky play." A somber palette of grays and muted colors sets the mood for Frankenstein. Back matter includes a map of Europe marking the travels of Frankenstein and a chronology of medical and scientific discoveries between the years of 1747 and 1834. These titles might be useful to introduce classics to young readers in a formalized instructional setting.-Barbara M. Moon, Suffolk Cooperative Library System, Bellport, NY Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

Shakespeare's tragedy about the ill-fated thane of Cawdor is brought to life via this one-man interpretation from Alan Cumming. Motivated by his scheming wife, Macbeth lusts for and then takes power, which leads to regicide and his own undoing. Building upon his performance in the audio edition of A.J. Hartley and David Hewson's Macbeth: A Novel, Cumming executes a captivating solo performance of this classic play. With an authentic Scottish accent, Cumming ably embodies Lord Macbeth. He shifts from character to character seamlessly, capturing the tone, attitude, and emphasis of each, while providing an increasing intensity that conveys the reprehensible, irreparable nature of the title character's actions. In addition to embracing the various characters, Cumming's powerful performance even elevates the play's stage directions, which-rather than feeling like crude interruptions to the dialogue-slip in smoothly like the knife used to slay King Duncan. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

The Yale annotated editions of these dramatic polar opposites include loads of textual notes and scholarly introductions, plus essays by Harold Bloom, all for the price of lunch at Mickey Ds. Supersized Shakespeare on the cheap. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

""Macbeth" is a blast...ghoulish...beguiling...sardonic...an expression of how captivating an evening of crackling Shakespeare can be." -- Peter Marks, "The Washington Post"
"The explosive and overwhelming effect of a truck bomb...this horrific, riveting "Macbeth" ought to be seen by as many people as possible." -- Terry Teachout, "The Wall Street Journal"

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