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‘Shakespeare Basics for Grown-Ups,’ by E. Foley and B. Coates


With their new book “Shakespeare Basics for Grown-Ups: Everything You Need to Know About the Bard” (Plume), coauthors E. Foley and B. Coates give comfort and aid to everyone who has ever wished they were more knowledgeable about Shakespeare but can’t find the time to dig in. In addition to summarizing each play in one sentence, the coauthors provide historical context for Shakespeare’s literary output, including his sonnets, and most famous speeches. There are frequent asides on everything from Renaissance sexuality to how to get the most out of watching a Shakespeare play.