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Review: The Juliet Spell by Douglas Rees

Thursday, November 3, 2011
2 Stars: An Okay Read
Paperback: 272 Pages
Publication: Harlequin Teen

I wanted the role of Juliet more than anything. I studied hard. I gave a great reading for it—even with Bobby checking me out the whole time. I deserved the part.
I didn't get it. So I decided to level the playing field, though I actually might have leveled the whole play. You see, since there aren't any Success in Getting to Be Juliet in Your High School Play spells, I thought I'd cast the next best—a Fame spell. Good idea, right?

Yeah. Instead of bringing me a little fame, it brought me someone a little famous. Shakespeare. Well, Edmund Shakespeare. William's younger brother.

Good thing he's sweet and enthusiastic about helping me with the play...and—ahem—maybe a little bit hot. But he's from the past. Way past. Cars amaze him—cars! And cell phones? Ugh.

Still, there's something about him that's making my eyes go star-crossed....

This book starts out slow. I don't understand Miranda's obsession with actors at all, nor do I understand why she casts a spell to get the part of Juliet, especially when she never expected to get actual… physical… results from the spell. The fact that she rejoices in that it brings her closer to actual actors (since she believes that actors are supposed to be superstitious) serves to make her more immature in my eyes.

I thought that the plot moved too fast. There isn’t much imagery or depth to the storyline. It seemed more like event after event took place and everything fell in place when the characters realized they should do something. Then, at the deciding moment, Drew announces that he received messages from a certain contact, and that decided what everyone did afterwards. It was very anticlimactic and disappointing.

If anything, I had fun watching the romantic development. Miranda and Edmund’s relationship goes through phases that are all too similar to different Shakespearean couples. They even go through a Beatrice-Benedict phase. If possible, Edmund can be more immature than Miranda, and he’s a handful for her. Honestly, I like Drew the best. Out of all the other characters, he was the most reasonable, the smartest, and the cutest. I can’t believe Miranda says this one line to him near the end of the novel, and I can’t believe that he’s still willing to put up with her.

Douglas brings Shakespeare and a time-travelling twist to contemporary times in The Juliet Spell. This book is about the consequences of wishes and spells. It is about making the choices that we need to make. With the many Shakespearean quotations into the novel that Rees incorporates into this novel, this might be a fun book for you to check out if you’re knowledgeable on Shakespeare and are looking for a fun read! If not, then it might not be the book for you. It wasn't one for me.


An ARC was provided by the publisher for review purposes

2 comments on "Review: The Juliet Spell by Douglas Rees"
  1. I think I gave this one like, 3 stars. I enjoyed it enough, but it wasn't something I would read again. I really wanted to like it, but I felt like it was lacking in a lot of depth. Oh well, great review!

    Anna @ Literary Exploration

  2. I was wondering about this one. It sounds ok regardless of the issues but not sure I would enjoy it that much. If a book has no depth I usually get bored fairly quickly.

    Xpresso Reads


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