Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Book Review: Othello (Shakespeare for Everyone Else, #2) by C.E. Wilson

@Bunnitaz #ARCreview #worthreadingit 
Rating 2 stars (2.4)

Summary from Goodreads:
Shakespeare’s work features some of the most memorable stories and characters ever created, yet for too many curious readers the combination of ultra-dense dialogue and unfamiliar historical settings make tackling the Bard’s work something between a tedious chore and a confusing mess of bird-bolts and quondam carpet-mongers.

While it’s nearly impossible to replicate or improve on these works, it is (thanks to their timeless nature) possible to make them more accessible to a wider audience.

In this Young Adult retelling of one of William Shakespeare’s most memorable plays, join C.E. Wilson as she breathes new life into Othello, the second book in her series Shakespeare for Everyone Else.


About the Author
C.E. Wilson is currently living in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with her husband and her two dogs and two cats. They are all the loves of her life. When she’s not writing young adult fantasy novels, she enjoys writing short stories on her Deviant Art page. She loves to write stories involving giants and little people (also known as GT) and nothing helps her to write more than Coca-Cola 

My Review:
This is a Y.A. retelling of Othello. I liked that it was written in everyday language that we use today. It makes for a faster reading that the original. I liked the story in general. She didn't stray away from the theme of Othello. I think that the Y.A. high school setting did not fit the story. It may have been more plausible if it was New Adult Contemporary. The way the teenagers switched from everyday language to a mature way of speaking just wasn't believable. For example, the way Archer speak of women and sex is just not the way a teenager would express it.

Now this review will be as if I have never read the original.
Orion I felt was gullible and ashamed of being African. He was worried about how others saw him so he was easily manipulated by Archer. Also it was never made clear whether Orion like Devony because she was beautiful or that she was beautiful because she was white. His references to her beautiful pale skin leads to the reader to believe the latter.

Devony claims to love Orion and not at all ashamed of him. Yet she lies to her father about her true relationship with Orion. She may not have cared but she knew that her father liked African Orion as long as he kept to his own.

Then there is Archer. Self centered, entitled, and insecure. His jealous of Orion was one of the reasons why he went after him. Orion had the love of one of the most prettiest girls in school. Then said girl helps him beat Archer out of student body president. Instead of sucking it up, he decides to take him down. Even as things take a turn for the worse, Archer has no remorse for the chaos and destruction he caused.

The tragedy of the story is that it didn't have to end the way that it did. Orion could have asked himself logically questions. He could have been more suspicious of someone you didn't speak that much too all of a sudden being your closet confidant. He could have believe the girl he said he loved so much. In the end, the story is about choices. Each character made choices that ended tragically.

Should you read this? Yes, I think you will like it. Is it something you should run out and get this very moment? Not really. Put it on your list and read when you are in the moody to read a retelling. it's not mind blowing. It's not written poetically but I don't think it was supposed to be. Who should read this? Anyone who wants a more fast paced verison of Othello. Someone who has already read the original and is going about comparing retellings. Maybe a lazy junior high or high school student who read it but didn't understand the basics of the story. Hey, kid that doesn't mean you shouldn't read the original though!

Happy Reading

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*This an ARC review
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***Reviews are my honest opinion. You don't see many reviews under 3 stars ratings because I rarely pick a book that I know I won't like. I mean really...why would I read something I know I won't like.

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