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Review: The Juliet Spell (Douglas Rees)

The Juliet Spell
Douglas Rees

The Juliet Spell (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....

Will Romeo steal her heart before time steals him away?

If I could describe this book in one word it would be... lackluster.

I was SO excited to see this book on NetGalley. I love retellings of SHakespeare's plays. One of my all time favorites is Ophelia by Lisa Klein. Unfortunately, this book did not live up to my hopes. Actually, it was really disappointing. I finished it just because I hate to abandon books, but it was a chore.

The first sign that I wasn't going to fall head over heels in love with this book was the characters. I never made a connection with them. None of them. Miri was a little boring and self-absorbed for my liking. She constantly droned on and on about being in love and wanting to play Juliet. It got old really fast. She was also too wishy-washy. If you read the book, you'll know what I mean. There were other characters, but I don't feel like they're worth mentioning. They were just there, interacting, but not really contributing anything of significance. You never get the sense of any character development. They were very flat and one sided.

My major issue with the book was the plot. It was so rushed! Too much happened in a short amount of time. I never bought into the chain of events. It was like the pieces just magically made themselves fit into some puzzle and I was supposed to believe it all. I realize that this is fiction, but you have to at least give me a reason to suspend my reality. Sell me on the story, please! Along with being rushed, it felt choppy in places. Parts of the story lagged considerably. There were pages of time-traveling hoopla that didn't seem to flow with the rest of the story. I understand the purpose of the time-travel-- after all, that's how Shakespeare and his brother arrive in the 21st century, but it still didn't fully fit. I skipped many of those pages because it read like a physics textbook. Very boring.

Overall, I really didn't "feel" this book. I had high hopes that fell flat. The money I would have spent on this book (if I were to buy it) will be going towards my new Coach purse. THAT would be money well spent.



  1. This book looks interesting, but I don't know if it's for me. Thanks for the review!

  2. I had a similar reaction to this book. I was very excited for it and got it off Negalley as well. But as the story went on it got worse and worse. I feel like it really could have been a good story in the beginning but it just got away from the author.

  3. Ah, had such potential too!
    Thanks for honest review.

  4. Thanks for saving me the money on this one! Great honest review!!



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