Monday, September 17, 2012

Review: Saving Juliet by Suzanne Selfors

Release Date: Jan. 22nd 2008
Publisher: Walker & Company
Age Group: Middle Grade/Young Adult
Pages: 256
Flirt Factor: Chaste
Overall: 3/5 stars

Two Juliets,both alike in desperation. . . Seventeen-year-old Mimi Wallingford, of the Broadway Wallingfords, has a life most girls can only dream of—complete with the starring role in her family’s production of Romeo and Juliet.  But acting is not her dream, and she’s fighting for the right to trade her script for a scalpel and become a doctor.Fourteen-year-old Juliet Capulet, of the Verona Capulets, has lived a lonely life—imprisoned by the feud that consumes her family and by her iron-fisted mother’s forcing her into an unwanted marriage.  She will do anything to avoid her betrothed, even if it requires faking a boil on her bottom—or something more dangerous. During the play’s final performance, Mimi’s wish to get away actually comes true when she and her heartthrob costar, Troy Summer, are magically transported into Shakespeare’s Verona. Now that she knows the real Juliet, Mimi doesn’t want to stand by and allow the play to reach its tragic end.  But if saving her new friend means changing the ending of the greatest love story of all time, will she and Troy ever make it back to Broadway? (blurb taken from Suzanne Selfors Website)

I picked up this book during my last trip to the library in the mood for a good romance book. I figured since it was based on Romeo and Juliet, the most famous love story of all time, I wouldn't be disappointed. While I did enjoy the story, it did disappoint in the whole romance department. There was maybe two actual romantic scenes. Enough with me ranting though, let's get to what I actually thought about the book.

While the book was hard to get into, once I got to the part where they enter Shakespeare's world I was hooked. I loved that Selfors took shakespeare's story and provided her own spin on things and made it more relatable to the modern teenager. She did a great job at not making the twists too predictable either, and while this is definitely no tragedy, there were a few surprises along the way. One of those suprises was when you met Juliet she was a spunky and adventurous girl who the nurse referred to as Beastie. In contrast when you meet Romeo he is completely love sick over Rosealine and mopes around for most of the book.

Selfors also did a good job at keeping the setting accurate to what you would find during the time period Romeo and Juliet was written. I think the constant setting helped keep some similarities to the original Romeo and Juliet.

All in all the book had a great idea for a story line, but the events that happened only needed 100 pages, not 256. I actually enjoyed it more then I thought I would after reading the first 20 pages and would recommend for anyone in the mood for a twist on a classic to read it.

Writing: 3/5 stars
Characters: 3/5 stars
Plot/Setting: 4/5 stars
Ending: 5/5 Stars
Cover: 3/5 stars


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