Saturday, September 12, 2015

Shakespeare Saturday

Happy Saturday! How's your weekend going? Mine's pretty chill (which is awesome in my opinion). Today I'm sharing two books with you, both Shakespeare themed! So if you're not into The Bard, you've been warned. Away you moldy rogue, away! Both books were provided by Quirk Books, one specifically for review and one came in my prize pack from Armchair BEA! Thanks again! :D

Quirk Shakespeare books

First up is William Shakespeare's Tragedy of the Sith's Revenge. If the title doesn't give it away, it's Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith written as a Shakespearean play. Chances are you've already heard of this series from the previous books in the series: Verily; A New Hope, The Empire Striketh Back, The Jedi Doth Return, The Phantom of Menace and The Clone Army Attacketh. Which makes today's book, Tragedy of the Sith's Revenge, both book three and book six. As much as I love Star Wars I still have trouble getting this logic down. Sorry, guys. #WorstFanEver.

If you haven't read the other books, it's ok. I assume you still know how Star Wars goes, and since these books follow the movies you already know what happens and where. Also I'm not really going to review the actual STORY, because again, everyone and their moms know what happens in Star Wars. What makes these books interesting is their presentation and HOW the story is written. So let's take a look inside.

Like any play, the book opens with a cast of characters and a prologue. The story is separated into five acts, signified by our wookie friend, here.

William Shakespeare's Tragedy of the Sith's Revenge

Something pretty common in Shakespeare's plays is an "aside." This is when a character speaks to the audience, usually in a way where it's implied that the other characters can't hear them. Tragedy of the Sith's Revenge is no different, and features lots of asides from our favorite droid, R2-D2! These were my favorite parts in the book. R2-D2 would have his little aside and tell you his opinion on what's going on, speaking in perfect Shakespearean English, but when he goes back to talking to the other characters it's in the beep-boop-bops we're used to hearing!

William Shakespeare's Tragedy of the Sith's Revenge

While I hadn't really thought of it prior to learning about the Shakespeare's Star Wars series, the pairing works really well. Star Wars is full of action, drama, tragedy, and tormented characters. So are all many of Shakespeare's plays! So if you're into Shakespeare AND Star Wars, definitely give this series a try. I see only one downside, and while it doesn't pertain to me it's something I might mention to others. If you DON'T like reading Shakespeare - as in you find the writing boring or hard to follow, I don't think this book is going to change that. It's written in perfect Elizabethan Shakespeare, just swap out the daggers for lightsabers and horses for starships! For more Star Wars Shakespeare fun, check out this Star Wars sonnet generator!

Quirk Shakespeare Books

Our next book is Pop Sonnets: Shakespearean Spins on Your Favorite Songs, by Erik Didriksen! This little (128 page) gem is pretty much what the title implies, which is awesome! Inside you'll find Shakespearean renditions of your favorite pop songs. Many of the songs are more recent hits (think Lorde, Bruno Mars, Rihanna), but there's also some older ones thrown in there, too (such as Gloria Gaynor, Journey and Rick Astley...yes, you get rickrolled by a book).

The songs are divided into five categories: Sonnets of Love, Sonnets of Despair, Songs of Time and Mortality, Ballads of Heroes, and my favorite - Rogues, Rascals and Wanton Women. Don't try reading this book in one sitting (even though it's totally doable and tempting)! If you speed through the songs too fast without thoroughly appreciating them, I think the book would kind of lose its charm - which would be unfortunate because the whole thing is a work of art! Here's one of my favorite songs from the book... ;)

Pop Sonnets Jay-Z 99 Problems

Pop Sonnets would make a great gift for any of your literature and music loving friends. I think it also makes a cute little coffee table type book. The copy I have (pictured) is in paperback because it's an unfinished ARC copy. When the final product is released on October 6th, it will be a beautiful hardcover, perfect for gift giving and (eeeek) Christmastime! For even more pop sonnets check out the Pop Sonnets Tumblr page, where they add a new one every Thursday! :)

So that's all for today! What are your opinions on Shakespeare? Who's going to see the new Macbeth movie?! 

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