With a history play whose villainous usurper is one of William Shakespeare's most memorably cunning and sinister characters, Richard III is edited by E.A.J. Honigmann with an introduction by Michael Taylor in Penguin Shakespeare. 'Now is the winter of our discontent Made glorious summer by this sun of York'. Richard of York, the bitter, deformed brother of King Edward IV, is secretly plotting to seize the throne of England. Charming and duplicitous, powerfully eloquent and viciously cruel, he is prepared to go to any lengths to achieve his goal. In his skilful manipulation of events and people - coercing the king into eliminating the Duke of Clarence, next in line to the throne; imprisoning the King's sons, princes Edward and Richard, in the Tower of London; and purging court of any who might oppose his rule - Richard is a chilling incarnation of the lure of evil and the temptation of power.
This book contains a general introduction to Shakespeare's life and Elizabethan theatre, a separate introduction to Richard III, a chronology, suggestions for further reading, an essay discussing performance options on both stage and screen, and a commentary.