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review
erzascarletbookgasm
Troilus and Cressida | William Shakespeare
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Pickpick

#shakespearereadalong
I ‘struggle‘ reading this strange play online. Most of the time I got lost in the long discussions. I‘m also not very familiar with Homer‘s Iliad, so I had to list down the heroes names on paper to remind myself. Initially I thought it‘s a love play but there‘s nothing romantic about it. What follows displays the absurd actions of the war heroes during a futile war. The play felt like mocking the mighty war heroes. 👇

erzascarletbookgasm (cont.) Obviously I didn‘t like how women are being valued in the play. Thersites, daring and raving all the time, is a welcome sight. Surprisingly I did not bail, and strangely, it‘s a ‘Pick‘. 11h
erzascarletbookgasm (cont.).. Thank you @merelybookish for the weekly great discussion points. Sorry I‘ve been a bad buddy reader..it‘s no fun reading this online and some scenes I needed to revisit to try to understand thus I often got to the discussions late. But the comments and perspectives of the others have been interesting. And witty. 🙂 Glad I read this! 11h
batsy Nice to hear it's a pick for you, as well! We're a small group 😆 10h
Graywacke Glad this worked for you. Yeah, @batsy, we are a small group. 6h
55 likes4 comments
review
jewright
Pickpick

I read his book about a year in Shakespeare‘s life last summer. It takes me a couple of months to read because it‘s a lot of details, so it‘s a slow read, but I loved it. I learn so much, but it‘s also frustrating how little we really know about Shakespeare.

review
Emilymdxn
This Is Shakespeare | Emma Smith
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Pickpick

This is the best book I‘ve read on Shakespeare in so long! So refreshing, unpretentious, thoughtful, teasing out all the beautiful odd ambiguities that make Shakespeare so fascinating. I‘ve never read anything that captures so perfectly why I love Shakespeare, and breaks down a lot of barriers to people finding it relevant and interesting in the 21st century. THIS is how good literary criticism can be and I recommend it so much

Graywacke Hmm. Noting 16h
64 likes8 stack adds1 comment
quote
jewright
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#shakeapearereadalong I thought this describes nicely what was so difficult about Troilus and Cressida.@merelybookish

merelybookish That is helpful! I definitely noticed all the asides and interruptions. 2d
Lcsmcat Fascinating 2d
6 likes2 comments
blurb
Awk_Word_Smith
Coffee with Shakespeare | Stanley Wells
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#romantic

📸 :: Death Wish Coffee Co.

blurb
merelybookish
Troilus and Cressida | William Shakespeare
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Final act of T&C! 🎉🎉 There's spying, raging, and fighting. Hector dies but the fates of Troilus, Cressida, and Diomedes are unclear. No one is happy. Thersites provides spot-on political commentary. Final word goes to Panderus, appropriate perhaps as his murky motives/ morals seem representative of this play and its message.
Okay #shakespearereadalong folks, YOU DID IT! Stick a feather in your Shakespeare hat because this was challenging!

merelybookish Now tell me your thoughts! And your reason why this problem play is a problem! 😀 As always, thanks for all your comments and discussion. I enjoyed this play (I liked discovering this 'modern' side of Shakespeare. And the language was as beautiful, complex and chewy as it gets!) but it it was made better by reading it with you! 2d
See All 35 Comments
merelybookish Next up is Merry Wives of Windsor starting August 4th and hosted by @gingerantics Some comedy to lighten the mood! 🙂 2d
DGRachel I don‘t know that I can really identify what didn‘t work for me, but for some reason, the words just would not stick in my head. I tried print, ebook, audiobook, reading silently, and reading out loud myself, and I feel like none of the words sunk into my brain. I‘m also not a fan of Homer or Greek tragedy in general, so that may have been part of the issue. But I‘m happy to be able to count it as another play read! 2d
ladyneverwhere I think I'm in the minority here but I actually liked the play. It could just be because it's been too long since I read Shakespeare and I just appreciated the language, but regardless I'm glad to have read it. Thanks for hosting the read along @merelybookish !! 2d
TheBookHippie I‘m so proud I finished it. I like Greek history mythology and tragedy and still I struggled 🤣...oy. The language was indeed beautiful as always even its its maddening state. Looking forward to lighter read this go round!! Thanks for hosting!!! I would have never made it through!!!! 2d
merelybookish @DGRachel I get that! My intro discussed how much the language shifts in this play and how abstract it is. So I can understand not ever getting a hook into it. But yes, now you can say you've read it! And that seems rare even among Shakespeare lovers! 🙂 2d
merelybookish @ladyneverwhere A few of us liked it! We are a growing minority! Glad you joined us! 2d
batsy @ladyneverwhere I enjoyed it, too. Lots to mull over and the language is really something. Thanks for hosting @merelybookish and these discussions definitely enriched my reading. 2d
Graywacke @ladyneverwhere @batsy I liked it a lot too. It‘s difficult, and that‘s one reason it‘s a problem play. It‘s also making fun of what should be a tragedy, confusing the experience. But once you get the cynicism, I think it all kind of makes sense. Thersites was our guide to how to view it. (edited) 2d
Graywacke I‘ll add, I really liked Cressida. She navigates through all this mess and has left me thinking. 2d
GingerAntics I hope they all died. Is that wrong? I‘m not sure I care if it is wrong. 2d
jewright Thersites was my favorite character. It‘s not my favorite play, but I‘m glad I read it with this group. 2d
Sunraven @ladyneverwhere: I didn‘t love it overall, as I found it structurally rather incoherent, but I pretty much came at it from the same place as you and I‘m glad I read it, too! I always find something to love in Shakespeare and I‘ll definitely be back for the next readalong! 2d
Sunraven Final thoughts: I love that comic strip — 100% accurate. 😆 Also, “chewy” language is a great concept ... Yum!

I liked that Scene 1 started off amusingly with a long string of exchanged insults; some of them reminded me of Egon yelling at slime in Ghostbusters: “You‘re nothing but an unstable short-chain molecule!” I was finally entertained by Thersites‘ ramblings and still thought Hector was relatively unhatable, but...
(edited) 2d
Sunraven I found the wrap-up as a whole rather messy and unsatisfying. Achilles‘ win and Cressida‘s change of heart felt random and eh to me, and Troilus‘ anger seemed somewhat justified, but I ended up not being entirely sure why the play was named after them, since it seemed more like they were a flimsy excuse to make fun of a bunch of people from the Iliad. (Hence my agreeing with the comic strip.) 2d
Lcsmcat I‘m glad I read it, but I won‘t be running out to buy tickets to the next production. 2d
Sunraven The only thing that keeps this from being a solid “meh” for me is that there are some great lines in it that I‘m definitely keeping in my quote book. Selections:

Achilles: Thou crusty batch of nature, what's the news?

Thersites: thou idle immaterial skein of sleave-silk

Cassandra: It is the purpose that makes strong the vow.

Hector: Now is my day's work done; I'll take good breath:
Rest, sword; thou hast thy fill of blood and death.
2d
Riveted_Reader_Melissa I thought this review on Goodreads was pretty good after I finished and was looking for some deeper meaning. They thought it was a dark parody of Romeo and Juliet, but instead of the young lovers dying for love, passion, bravery...instead they live and love and bravery die instead... https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1793555 (edited) 2d
Graywacke @Sunraven fun lines! 2d
merelybookish @jewright @batsy @ladyneverwhere I'm really glad I read this one with others. It helped to know others found it hard too! And to have somewhere to complain about Ulysses. 😄 1d
merelybookish @GingerAntics The pain is over! You're free of T&C now! 😝 1d
merelybookish @Graywacke Agreed about Cressida. She really illustrates women's choices in situations where they have no power. I wish we had had more from her perspective. At the end, we only get her through Troilus's eyes. 1d
merelybookish @Lcsmcat There was a recent performance in NYC that got lots of good reviews. But it is a play that demands a lot of the audience. 1d
merelybookish @Riveted_Reader_Melissa Thanks for sharing that! That is insightful. It addresses @sunraven point about why the play is named for T&C. In R&J, their love story ends up changing the society. You feel the feuding families have learned the error of their ways. But in T&C, the lovers are destroyed by the larger forces. They are one individual story (among many) of people destroyed by war. 1d
merelybookish @Sunraven Great quotes! Thersites always gets some great insults in! 1d
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @merelybookish And I agree, I definitely wish we‘d have seen more from Cressida POV at the end. 1d
Graywacke @Riveted_Reader_Melissa @merelybookish Seemed we always saw her (Cressida) from another point of view, or maybe it felt that way because she was always performing for someone - Pandarus, Troilus or Diomedes, etc. (except at the end of her last scene where she thinks she‘s alone) @merelybookish thanks for leading us through this. Another great readalong. 1d
GingerAntics @merelybookish is this another one of those plays we can rewrite? I think everyone should die at the end. 🔪🔪🔪 I think that would make the play much better. 😈 🤣😂🤣 There was another we were going to rewrite, I can‘t remember which right now, though. 22h
Sunraven @merelybookish @graywacke @Riveted_Reader_Melissa Oh, man, good point with the idea that the story would be interesting from Cressida‘s perspective. Now I kind of want to write that ... Off to look at other versions of this story now for research. 😉 Maybe I can even grant @GingerAntics‘ wish and kill everyone at the end. 😆 20h
GingerAntics @Sunraven YEEEEEEES!!! 💙💙💙 20h
Graywacke 😂 19h
erzascarletbookgasm Haha love this cartoon strip! 👍 11h
55 likes1 stack add35 comments
blurb
Emilymdxn
This Is Shakespeare | Emma Smith
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I think Vienna might be the best place to read. I had dinner in this cafe last night and had to come back today the coffee and cake were so good. This is the cafe Freud had his morning coffee in - at least I believe so. I wonder if he had the cake that is now their speciality cake - almond sponge with apricot and cherry jam and the best cake I‘ve had in my life so far.

julesG Enjoy Vienna! And the coffee houses and cake. 2d
OnlyYoo I swear that Italy has the best coffee in the world 😍 2d
TheAliceEvers Oh wow it looks gorgeous! 2d
Katejoy98 So relaxing! 2d
82 likes4 comments
blurb
WanderingBookaneer
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The end of our trip is here. We haven‘t seen the cats in a month!

julesG Have a safe trip home. 3d
Crazeedi They will ignore you!!😉 safe travels!! 2d
86 likes2 comments