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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fine, comprehensive, and up-to-date edition of Shakespeare's Sonnets and Poems, 14 May 2009
By 
This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
I won't bother talking about the sonnets or Shakespeare's other poetry themselves as the other reviews have, as information about these is plentiful. What I will say is this: Colin Burrow's edition is a fine example of scholarship, set out in an accessible format, with a well-written insightful book-size (!) introduction and comprehensive explanatory notes.

For those who aren't aware, this is the most up-to-date edition of the sonnets in print (published in 2002 compared with the 1997 Arden edition) and for this reason - alongside the fact that it is inexpensive, the introduction is so insightful, and that the inclusion of Shakespeare's other poetry encourages further reading and cross reference - I think it should really be the first choice for those interested in the Sonnets alone. Shakespeare's other poems, however, do exist in a slightly more recent Arden edition (published in 2007) and the very serious reader might want to check this out - but the differences are few and merely technical, and Burrow's edition therefore fares well in this respect too. I highly recommend it.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Both a beautiful and a functional edition, 7 Jun 2010
By 
Roman Clodia (London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Part of the Oxford Complete Shakespeare series, this contains all the poems, both the lyrics and the narrative poems. The poems are in modern spelling, the text has been collated from the most authoritative sources, and the editor, Colin Burrow, has written detailed introductions that are both scholarly and accessible.

The commentary and glossary is either on the page or facing so students don't need to keep flicking to the back, and the sonnets are given a page each so there is plenty of room for our own annotations.

Perhaps best of all, this is really well-produced on thick white paper and with a proper sewn binding that looks like it won't fall apart with too much use. So whether you're a student at any level, or a general reader, this is an beautiful edition of all Shakespeare's poems and a bargain at this price.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The undiscovered Shakespeare?, 18 Aug 2008
By 
emma who reads a lot (London) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Most of us Shakespeare lovers would take it for granted that we'd be missing out if we'd never read Hamlet, or Othello, or Romeo and Juliet. We also make the special effort occasionally to get to see some of the less well-known plays. But how many of us have ever made the time to sit down and read through Rape of Lucrece, or Shakespeare's 1593 bestseller Venus and Adonis?

Having (finally) got round to doing this I can totally recommend the experience. These poems were written for aristocratic patron the Earl of Southampton and are fully of juicily beautiful turns of phrase. They are extraordinarily dramatic. But most interesting of all to me, they show me another side of Shakespeare; something I can't get from the plays alone. They are meditations on how love works, what sexual attraction is and whether we should control it, which are sustained for many hundreds of lines, in a way that a play cannot because it has to pursue a dramatic course.

And I haven't even said anything about the sonnets. We all know a few wonderful lines from the sonnets, but there are 154 in total to enjoy... a lifetime's worth of poetry. Each appears on its own individual page, with facing notes, so that there's enough room for you to scribble your own thoughts if so inclined.

In this edition, which I think is the best on the market, you also get 169 pages of expert critical commentary from Colin Burrow, Lecturer at Cambridge, ranging from a discussion of contemporary legal attitudes to rape to homoeroticism in the sonnets.

I don't know whether it's the case now that Oxford World's Classics have reprinted, but my edition is properly bound, too, so that it won't fall apart for a good while, I hope.

For any serious lover of Shakespeare - I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 8 Nov 2012
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This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
This is a very analytical book on the sonnets.
Good price and something to leave by the bedside table and return to again and again.
Excellent
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 29 Jun 2014
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This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Perfection !!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A great present, 28 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
I purchased this book for my wife who likes this sort of book and wanted a book of poetry, so I suggested the works of "The Bard" aka William Shakespeare, all his sonnets and poems!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not Bad For A Stratford Lad, 5 May 2013
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This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Edmund Spenser, Sir Philip Sidney, John Donne and the underrated but brilliant George Herbert were much better poets than WS, no argument. The Midlander's verse often disappears up its own pentameter in strained and unfortunate conceits repeated too often for comfort, and many a mistiming of the metre is evident to my layman's ears. Moreover, you won't find an image as brilliant as the flea in Donne's The Flea, or the compass in A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning, or a poem as tantalisingly elusive as Herbert's The Quiddity here. The best of the sonnets are excellent, however, and Venus And Adonis has its moments. No, what I've heard is that this fellow wrote a few decent plays and I'm off to see one in a while, something about a Danish chap, royal blood and all that, who worries too much about everything and comes a cropper at the end. Will it be as good as the hype? Ah, that is the question... What there is no question about, though, is that this is a beautifully presented and rigorously critical edition, as ever with Oxford, and it'd be a shame to miss out.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Shaespeare was a genious, 20 Mar 2011
By 
Christine R. Christensen (Denmark) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
I decided to buy book containing all of Shakespeare's sonnets as weel as other poems because they are beatiful though sometimes a bit challenging when English is not your first language.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wanted to recall "Sonnet 18", 19 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Shall I compare the to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate.
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May
And summer's lease has all to short a date

It's worth buying the book, for that alone!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Bard, 14 Jan 2013
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This review is from: The Complete Sonnets and Poems: The Oxford Shakespeare (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
WS in all his glory and such wonderful, soulful poetry. A good replacement for my original complete works but I can do without the commentaries as I am no longer a student.
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