I confess to approaching this with reluctance and disapproval, and to not changing my mind. Perhaps this method of briefing Shakespeare's plays, presenting them in libretto form, has its value, for theatre goers rather than for play readers. A quick refresher on the salient points of plot and character might make, for instance, a visit to a production of Richard II more enjoyable. But for an introduction to reading the play itself (and that seems the author's main intent), I should feel that the cream was off the jug, and the zest destroyed. There is no quality, no style to the text. Plot is briefly indicated in abrupt, short-phrased digests. Occasional passages are quoted in small measure, losing the quality of the context. Sixteen plays are thus presented,- the obvious inclusions are Romeo and Juliet, Merchant of Venice, Midsummer Night's Dream, Hamlet, Twelfth Night, Julius Caesar, Othello, Macbath, King Lear, Winter's Tale, The Tempest; there are two historical plays, Richard II and the two volumes of Henry IV. Open to query as to the whys of inclusion are Coriolanus and Anthony and Cleopatra.