Revisit Shakespeare with the new Staged collection

Featuring six unabridged texts.


April 23 is Shakespeare day so of course we need to celebrate it by rereading some of the greatest works written by the bard. Penguin Random House Children released six unabridged texts in a series called Staged, with gorgeous covers illustrated by Lucie Louxor and designed by Arabella Jones, and forewords written by YA authors we love:

Kat Delacorte, author of With Fire in the Blood, for Macbeth

Jennifer Niven, author of All the Bright Places, for Romeo and Juliet

Becky Albertalli, author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda, for A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Talia Hibbert, author of Get a Life, Chloe Brown, for As You Like It

Faridah Abike-Iyimide, author of Ace of Spades for Hamlet

Holly Bourne, author of The Yearbook, for Much Ado About Nothing

The forewords touched upon the first time these authors read Shakespeare, and how they felt about his work. And perhaps not surprisingly, not all of them loved Shakespeare from the get-go. After all, many of us were forced to read Shakespeare before we could understand the words, let alone be able to appreciate the themes explored in his plays. While many of us abandoned the mission to reread Shakespeare, it is very interesting to read the authors we admire discuss why they gave Shakespeare a “second chance”.

Some of these forewords also touched upon the fact that Shakespeare created many tropes that we all know and love today, e.g. “enemies to lovers” between Beatrice and Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing, and “mistaken identity” in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. These are tropes that are so prominent in romcoms nowadays, but many readers like us would have never thought about their origins.

With the insightful forewords and gorgeous covers, this collection is honestly a must-have for your shelves.

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