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In this lively, fascinating account of the publication of Shakespeares Sonnets, ted biographer Clinton Heylin brings their convoluted history to light, beginning with the first complete appearance of the Sonnets in print in May, 1609. He introduces us to the unholy alliance involved in this precarious enterprise: Thomas Thorpe, the publisher, a self-described well wishing adventurer; George Eld, the printer, heavily embroiled in large-scale pirating; William Aspley, the prestigious bookseller, who mysteriously ended his association with Thorpe soon after. Leaving the calamitous world of Elizabethan publishing, Heylin goes on to chart the many editions of the Sonnets through the years and the editorial decisions that led to their present configuration. Passionate, astute, and brilliantly entertaining, the result is a concise and vivid history of perhaps the greatest poetry ever written.
Clinton Heylin is the author of many books, including Behind the Shades, widely regarded as the definitive biography of Bob Dylan. He lives in Somerset, England.