'Lesser's book maps out important new directions for Renaissance scholarship.' Forum for Modern English Studies
'This is a book that offers a new direction for the study of early modern playbooks, a way of reading that will be responsive not only to bibliographical evidence but also to the earlier readings that it creates ...'.
'Lesser's radical approach permits a radical clarity ... he casts a dazzling and original light onto the public moment of these plays' birth.'
'Lesser's findings are of considerable importance to publishing history ... scholarly and thought-provoking ... Through his four absorbing case histories Zachary Lesser offers a study of the highest importance not only to bibliography and the history of the English book trade but also to many other areas of historical, literary, and cultural studies.'
-Review of English Studies
' ... most interesting and useful ... especially interesting and original [of all those published during the year].... This is a genuinely original approach and yields important new insights into the reception of the plays he considers ... Lesser makes a convincing case that attention to publishers can yield important information about how plays were read.'
-Studies in English Literature
'Lesser has written an excellent book ... a genuinely new contribution to the field ... It will be hard for anyone who has read his book to go on to read an early modern play without paying attention, in a way they are unlikely to have done before, to the identity of its publisher ...'
-Renaissance and Reformation
"By making the publisher his agent and the publisher's specialty his backdrop, Lesser creates a new canon of literature for investigation and a new method for recovering early reader response. He also destabilizes many foundational principles of print history and literary criticismthat the author is the source of a text's meaning, that the print industry is a passive if unreliable conduit of meaning, and that the political culture that informs a text is the one in place when the text was composed."