Perfect for the Folger Shakespeare Library’s 2016 “First Folio!” tour celebrating the book’s 400th anniversary.

SHAKESPEARE'S FIRST FOLIO

FOUR CENTURIES OF AN ICONIC BOOK

A biography of the most valuable English-language book in the world.

The famous First Folio of Shakespeare’s plays exists thanks to two of the Bard’s fellow actors who pulled it all together seven years after his death. Nearly 1,000 pages long, it took two years to print, and when it went on sale, in 1623, it sold for 1 pound; buyers had to bind it themselves. The first printing was a bullish 750 copies. What happened next is what Smith (English/Hertford Coll., Oxford; The Making of Shakespeare’s First Folio, 2016, etc.) is most interested in: the book as cultural object. Who bought it, and why, and what did they do with it? Smith has traveled the globe to track down copies in order to write her “biblio-biography,” an “attempt to reconstruct the history of one particular book…how that book moved through time, space and, context.” Focusing first on the topic of “owning,” with its individual, cultural, and national desires, she traces in detail the movements of three specific Folios. After passing through various hands, one ended up in Henry Folger’s incredible library/museum (along with 81 others). A second ended up at a Japanese university, and the third went to Oxford’s Bodleian Library in 1624, was sold to a collector, and then came back thanks to fundraising efforts. In the “reading” section, Smith analyzes the range of marks and marginalia made early on in the Folios when they were a “real reading text,” as well as “early female engagement with the book.” “Decoding” is an intriguing look at the intense scholarly scrutiny Folios have generated, including a foray into the possibility of secret codes within textual irregularities. The final two sections deal with the use of Folios in the theater and “perfecting” the Folio: facsimiles, forgeries, and digital reproduction. It’s academic, yes, but thoroughly delightful for bibliophiles and Shakespeare lovers.

Perfect for the Folger Shakespeare Library’s 2016 “First Folio!” tour celebrating the book’s 400th anniversary.

Pub Date: June 15, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-19-875436-7

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: March 27, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2016

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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