Shakespeare put quill to paper many times and even scholars of the Bard’s writings can struggle to remember plot details and themes across all of his works. Shakespeare300 offers concise, 300-word plot summaries and introductory notes for every play Shakespeare wrote, so if you’re cramming for an exam or just want a handy overview to refer to, then you’re going to be interested in this. The notes themselves – from established American author James Reese – are engaging, succinct and entertaining to read. It’s no replacement for a proper study aid or book of criticism, of course, but as 300-word summaries go it would be difficult to improve on these. There are only a handful of times where it feels like the word limit causes an awkward phrase or sentence. Each play has four pages covering the main themes, the plot, an infographic overview and a character map. For the amount of content you get, the price is pitched just about right. There are some useful extras here too, including a timeline of great writer’s life and works, and less serious content such as the top 15 Shakespearean insults. The app isn’t the most well-presented we’ve ever seen, but it gets the job done, and the visualisations and character maps are executed well. The front page sorts the plays into tragedy, history, romance and comedy for easy reference. Seasoned Shakespearean scholars will probably turn their noses up at Shakespeare300 but in our modern age of bite-sized information, it’s a useful resource to have at your disposal if you have any interest in the playwright. If you’re heading off to a production of one of these plays, for example, Shakespeare300 would be a good way of refreshing your memory on some of the characters and plot points involved. Obviously there are spoilers, but you could skip the Plot page for the play in question. A easily digestible primer on the works of the Bard. • iPad+ | iOS 7.0 | £1.99/$2.99 | v1.2 http://bit.ly/shakespeare300ios • check out brightvilla.com for more free apps and reviews.