Author: Michelle Ray
How Received: review copy
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.
It's no secret that I adore Shakespeare. (I'm doing the Shakespeare Reading Challenge for fun.) Hamlet happens to be my favorite Shakespeare play, so when I saw that there was a modern adaption of it, I jumped on it - and when I saw that it starred Ophelia, I was more than intrigued.
Thankfully, I don't have to disown anybody for not doing the Bard justice. Michelle Ray weaves a fantastic tale, staying true to the original story while fleshing out the characters and bringing the plot into a much more relatable story.
One of my favorite bits about this book is how strong a character Ophelia is. Does she go back to Hamlet time and time again? Yes. I mean, he is the prince of Denmark, and she is an impressionable teenage girl, and she is in love with him. But she always tries to do what she thinks is right, even if it means pissing off the Queen and (newly crowned) King.
I loved the development of Horatio as Hamlet and Ophelia's best friend; I think it made a lot of sense, especially with the modern story. Hamlet was as whiny as ever, but watching his progression through the contemporary story and knowing how the classic story was a lot of fun.
I think what I'm impressed most with is how smoothly it managed to translate over to a contemporary story - lots of factors could have hindered it, but Michelle handled it really smoothly while moving it over and I couldn't find a problem with how it was written. I loved how she incorporated the police and talk shows and everything that accompanies modern life - and the scene at the end and how it played out made me laugh and gasp simultaneously.
Overall Rating & Final Comments: 10/10. Loved it as a Shakespeare fan and a fantastic story for people who even only kind of like Shakespeare - and maybe people who don't like it at all.
Cover Comments: I LOVE covers that tie directly into the book, and this one does! Mad props!