Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Book Review: Falling For Hamlet by Michelle Ray

Summary: Meet Ophelia: a blonde, beautiful high-school senior and long-time girlfriend of Prince Hamlet of Denmark. Her life is dominated not only by her boyfriend's fame and his overbearing family, but also by the paparazzi who hound them wherever they go. As the devastatingly handsome Hamlet spirals into madness after the mysterious death of his father, the King, Ophelia rides out his crazy roller coaster life, and lives to tell about it. In live television interviews, of course.
Passion, romance, drama, humor, and tragedy intertwine in this compulsively readable debut novel, told by a strong-willed, modern-day Ophelia.
Review: The first thing that drew me into this book was the cover. Then, I read the summary and really wanted to read it because of how it had to do with Shakespeare's Hamlet. I have never read the play, but I love reading modern day adaptations of classics, so I couldn't wait to start this one. The story ended up being a lot different than I expected it to be, but definitely in a good way. 

The whole story is told from Ophelia's point of view, changing from her interview on a talk show to her retelling of what happened to the reader to her interrogation with the police in each chapter. It was really interesting to see what versions she told to what audience, with it all coming together in the end. The beginning is so cute with Ophelia and Hamlet being madly in love with each other. But that "madly" turns into madness real soon and the rest of the book is full of crazy moments, murders, and secrets. Because of all of the craziness, there was barely ever a dull moment in the story. 

I really liked Ophelia and felt for her when everything in her life crumble to pieces. She is such a passionate person and it's so sad when she is helpless when it comes to the events in her life. I also like Hamlet in the beginning, but once he turned mad, I just couldn't like him anymore (which I guess is inevitable because who would like a mad person?). The modern day adaptation, though, was great and made the story much more enjoyable to read than it would have been reading the original. I was intrigued to figure out what happened next and everything that happened made sense. Michelle Ray did a great job in turning a classic play into an enjoyable young adult novel so that teens won't fear reading Shakespeare anymore. I'd say if you're in the mood to read a romance gone awry with secrets and murders sprinkled in, give Falling For Hamlet a chance.


  1. I read Hamlet in HS but I also love adaptations, so this book looks like something I'd love to read. Great review!

    Nerd Girls at Books to the Sky

  2. I liked the cover too. There's just something about it ... hmmmm, what could it be now. Srsly, though, does sound good, although you know it's going to be anything but upbeat.

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