Shakespeare on Toast is an earnest attempt to make Shakespeare’s works more accessible for the modern reader. Part of the book stresses the subtleties and poetry in Shakespeare’s work, while large sections of it also stress cultural differences between then and today (for instances, accents being used to indicate social classes, or sarcasm used by the characters that we often do not pick up [apparently the Elizabethans had that too!]).
Very early in the book, Ben Crystal lets us in on a one of the great facts of Shakespeare: he inspired today’s soap operas. Shakespeare’s works were to the Elizabethans what “Days of Our Lives” and “As The World Turns” are to people today. This realization changed the man and his writing for me (and hopefully, anyone who reads this great book) permanently, making them both a little less intimidating.
The author’s unique insight as an actor and former linguist helps give a unique perspective on the Olde English that gives a new perspective on the plays many of us have read (but never understood).
I really, really, liked this book. The author is writing about his passion, and a part of his zealousness for Shakespear’s writing is sure to rub off on any who take the time to read this book.
Rated PG: Some minor profanity.
Review copy provided by the publisher. Thank you!