Having studied linguistics, I'm sensitive to the way language works; the way words go together to arrive at a result. Any fan of Shakespeare knows that the result is stunning, and it's worth looking into how these words work together to create such masterpieces. David Crystal, a well-known British popularizer of language and linguistics, looks at the variegated elements of Shakespeare's words, from spelling and punctuation, to pronunciation and meter, from Shakespeare's coinages (not as many as we think), to his influences. You don't need to know anything about linguistics to understand this book; Crystal explains all the technical terms and concepts briefly and sufficiently, but if you do know about language, the book may interest you more. You won't find any criticism of the plays, or the Bard's style, in this book, but you will end up with a better appreciation of the many variables that fit together to make a Shakespeare play.