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A Bookaholic, Pro-life, Pro-Family, Pro-Oxford Comma, Catholic (with Asperger's) who reads and writes as her obsession. I've been reading over 400 books a year lately. These are my ramblings on some of the books I read. To read about all the books I read and comment on, visit me at LibraryThing or Goodreads.

I've been blogging since 2007 and at this point (July 2015) am trying my hand at turning the theme of this blog towards mystery, thriller and crime, fiction and non-fiction. I have some special interest topics and categories within this broad genre which include (but are not limited to) serial killers, scandi-crime, Victorian history and historicals, history of the criminally insane and asylums, psychopathology, death, funerary practices and burial, corpses, true crime and anything dealing with the real life macabre, or that portrayed in fiction.

I also read a short story a day from various collections, sometimes anthologies othertimes collections of a single author's work. These reviews are also posted here and while they are of mixed genre the mystery, thriller, horror, gothic and macabre often appear within their pages as well.



I also blog about
graphic novels and manga on a separate BLOG.

Friday, December 30, 2011

284: Shakespeare: A Midsummer Night's Dream: A Graphic Novel by Nel Yomtov

Shakespeare: A Midsummer Night's Dream:A Graphic Novel by Nel Yomtov. Illustrated by Berenice Muniz (US) - (Canada)
Shakespeare Graphics

Pages: 77
Ages: 10+
Finished: Dec. 25, 2011
First Published: Aug. 1, 2011
Publisher: Stone Arch Books
Genre: children, YA, graphic novel, classic, play, comedy
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:
Ancient Greece, in the palace of Theseus, the Duke of Athens...
"Fair Hippolyta, in four days we shall be married!"
Acquired: Received a review copy from Capstone Press.

Reason for Reading:  I enjoy retellings of Shakespeare rather than reading the olde English (which I did plenty of at one time.)  I've read a couple of children's retellings of this play, and seen the old b/w version of the movie with Mickey Rooney plus seen it performed live once.  I cannot recall if I've read the original play.

As to the original story, I am only somewhat partial to it.  I guess you could say it fits in the middle group of the Shakespeare plays I love, I think are OK, and I hate.  This one can be quite confusing since it is two stories in one containing a play within a play.  The main story is set in Ancient Greece and revolves around two couples in love, though not happily paired off, more of a triangle with an odd man out.  These characters' king and queen are being entertained by a troupe of players who are putting on a play which is based on "Pyramus and Thisbe" (the same play Shakespeare based Romeo and Juliet upon).  Both the star-crossed lovers and the troupe players enter the woods and get caught up in the faerie realm where tricks are played, go wrong and cause much confusion, as typical in a Shakespeare comedy.
This is a very nice retelling.  The format is well done with a two page spread showing the main characters to start off with.  Divisions separating the play into the original five acts and an informational note at the end on the "History Behind the Play".  The writing, while adapted for young readers, keeps the formality of the original and keeps the prose poetic even though no longer in verse.  One must keep one's wits about them to keep the story in order as a lot goes on in this play while keeping the s*xuality of the original at bay.  I love the illustrations in this adaptation; they are bold, bright and farcical, while many of the characters have a slight manga look about them which all goes toward making the book visually appealing.  This would be an excellent resource to use along side the study of the original play for older ages.  The younger end of the age group would do well to read a short summary of the play first perhaps by the Lambs or Nesbit.