Thursday, January 5, 2012

Romeo's Ex

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR); 1st edition (September 19, 2006)
  • ISBN-10: 0805075003
  • Author: Lisa Fiedler
  • Cover art: Love the cover art.
  • Overall rating * out of 5 stars
  • Obtained: My personal book shelf.

Romeo's Ex  by Lisa Fiedler
Reviewed by Moirae the fates book reviews
Rosaline won't let anyone or anything get in the way of her future as a healer. That is, until she meets Benvolio. Where Romeo's words had been hollow and unfounded, Benvolio's are filled with sincerity and true love. Now Rosaline finds herself caught between her feelings, her ambition, and her family's long-standing feud with the Montagues.
When Romeo turns his affections toward Ros's cousin, Juliet, their relationship brings the feud of the two houses to a new level. Rosaline and Benvolio hatch a plan to bring peace to the two families. But will they succeed? (Synopsis provided by goodreads)

Okay so I wanted to love this book. I really enjoy re-tellings of Shakespeare, myths and fairytales, if they are done well. For me, this book fell flat. I felt that the author was trying too hard to sound Shakespearean.  There was a massive over abundance of words like "thee", "thou" and "doth".  This was mixed in with more modern day writing as well. I found myself unable to enjoy the story I was wanting the book to pick a style of writing and stay in it.
I felt like the author disliked the original story and felt that Rosaline got the shaft in the original text and wanted to change her story. That's all nice and fine, but please don't make it clear how much you seem to dislike the original story. That takes away from your book.
I found myself skimming parts just to get to the end so I could move on to the next book in my pile. 
I also found myself rolling my eyes everytime actual lines from the play were in placed in the text, they were always italicized. 
The book ridiculously simple and felt like Fiedler was "dumbing" down the story for the reader. Most readers are smart enough to know what's going on thank you.
The story also felt very preachy saying how Romeo and Juliet hardly knew each other. Yes, this is true, in the play they only knew each other for a few days.
I could go on, but that would lead to spoilers, so instead all I'll say is there were some ideas brought up in the book that are ludicrous for a book set in 1595.
Sadly, the only thing I liked was the cover art.

If you are looking for a good re-telling I'd recommend Michelle Ray's Falling for Hamlet or Suzanne Selfors Saving Juliet. They are some of the best I have read.

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