A great help!,
This review is from: The "Miller's Tale" (TY Advanced Lit Guides) (Paperback)
Firstly, I'm going to type up the contents list as not much information is listed about this great study aid.
- Chaucer's life
- Background and upbringing
- What are the Cantebury Tales?
- What else did Chaucer write?
- Historical and social background
- Words and concepts
- The social structure
- The Church
- The monarchy
- The status of women
- Literary background
- The Prologue
- The Tale
- The Miller
- Ignorance and superstition
- Pride and vanity
- Love and lust
LANGUAGE, STYLE AND STRUCTURE
- Reading aloud
- Poets' debt to Chaucer
- Chaucer's language
- Language and characterization
- Alliteration and onomatopeoia
- Links between the Prologue and Tale
- How does The Miller's Tale fit in with other Tales?
- How does Chaucer make the plot credible?
- Narrative voice
- Pace shifts and shifts of focus
- Music and religion
- Morality and values in the tale
COMMENTARY ON THE PROLOGUE
COMMENTARY ON THE TALE
HOW TO GET AN 'A' IN ENGLISH LITERATURE
THE EXAM ESSAY
MODEL ANSWER AND ESSAY PLAN
GLOSSARY OF LITERARY TERMS
I used this book while studying The Miller's Tale for A Level English. At first, I thought I was doomed to fail because I'd never studied a text this old before, but by using this guide (coupled with Oxford World's Classics modern translation. ISBN: 0-19-283360-X) I was able to better understand the Tale and enjoy it. It didn't hurt that I got an A in the process!
The blurb claims that the book "make[s] use of the latest scientific knowledge on how the brain works best" to propel the reader to a higher grade. Whatever the book does, it works, and Tony Buzan's mind maps are especially helpful. I definitely prefer this book to the York Guides most of my friends used - it's no way near as stale as the York Guides and really did help me.
I've written this review partly because I'm selling my old copy through the Amazon marketplace, but also to provide more information on a book that I think knocks spots off the more commonly used ones. If you don't buy it from me, try to find it elsewhere :)