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Exit, Pursued by a Bear: Shakespeare's Characters, Plays, Poems, History and Stagecraft Hardcover – 23 Sep 2003

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC; 1st ed. edition (23 Sept. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747566399
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747566397
  • Product Dimensions: 21.8 x 14 x 4.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,284,282 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


'Extremely impressive very useful study aid for anyone, teenage or adult, and I shall certainly find it an honoured place in my reference library' The School Librarian 'The must-have guide of the season' The Good Book Guide 'Unusual in its extensive range of coverage Useful for critics, students, readers, writers and any fan of the Bard' The Good Book Guide 'Aims to be indispensible to everyone, from the young student to the well-versed scholar and the enthusiast' Sunday Business Post

About the Author

Louise McConnell conceived the idea for Exit, pursued by a bear when helping a young friend through A-Level English. Having recognised the need for a lively, accurate and clear guide to Shakespeare and his world, she brought to the task a lifetime's enthusiasm for the theatre and play production, and experience of working on encyclopedias for Hutchinson and Longman. Louise McConnell received an Honours degree in English at the University of Kent in Canterbury, where she and her husband, Professor Louis James, live and work. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By UH Richards on 9 May 2007
Format: Paperback
I've owned the hardback version of this book for several years now. As well as summaries of plots & characters, & background info such as meanings of technical terms, fellow playwrights, etc, you also get supplements such as: a small map of London's Elizabethan theatres, a list of playhouses, Shakespeare & play chronologies, a partial family tree of the British Royal family which covers the kings Shakespeare wrote about, as well as the one (& queen) he lived under, & biblio- & filmographies. The only thing I haven't got is the list of websites.

it's interesting, informative & accessibly written. If you're a casual reader, or simply curious about something, you can dip in & out of the book without feeling the info is passing over your head. If you're studying Shakespeare at whatever level, then it's all here for you in nice bite-size chunks. Only trouble is, there's no index - in my version, at least. An alphabetical index, with characters listed underneath the relevant plays, perhaps? That would have given it that extra star.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 7 Dec. 2003
Format: Hardcover
As a mature student of A Level English, I have found this book absolutely invaluable. It has entries for all the plays, including a synopsis, but in addition has many entries about related aspects of Elizabethan life, including the entry on bear baiting illustrated above.
Although it is an excellent book for anyone studying Shakespeare, it would also make an interesting read for anyone with even a passing interest in ths fascinating period of theatrical history.
I thoroughly recommend this book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 1 review
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
a great reference in convenient size 3 Oct. 2005
By A. Woodley - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This is a lovely book, it looks good, it is a nice size, it is well presented, and most of all it is an incredibly good reference on Shakespeare.

Every character who has ever appeared in Shakespeare is listed in here. You know where they appeared, when and anything of significance about them. This is a useful item when you are studying shakespeare, but also just in general literture where references to Shakespeare abound. We have found this really useful in just about every instance but amazingly also in watching Disney movies - for instance in Aladdin there is a character called Iago, and for the children it was a really interesting way of introducing Othello in an indirect way.

These are not long and dull explanations, they are short and punchy so they are ideal for all the family.

There is also historical information about Shakespeare for instance the band of players Shakespeare might have performed in, and contemporarys.

As I said, this is a nice sized book. It is in Hardback, but only slightly larger than a standard paperback, so it doesn't seem overwhelming. It is also light and easy to pick up and put down (not always easy with reference works.) I loved the cover illustration which is simple, and the title - it is kind of catchy and was enjoyed by the older kids too.

There is also a ribbon marker in it which makes going back to the page you have just read easy, no folding down corners here.

The book is set out as a dictionary with all characters, etc, listed alphabetically and there is cross referencing so it is fairly easy to find things quickly.

This is not a browsing book, but a reference, and a very useful one.
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