Theater in general and Shakespeare in particular are notably protean, and the potential of this and its companions to...

MACBETH #KILLINGIT

From the OMG Shakespeare series

Carbone continues her lively updating—or heretical butchery, depending on your point of view—of Shakespeare's plays.

Having previously brought into the 21st century/slaughtered Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet (srsly Hamlet and YOLO Juliet, both 2015), Carbone now turns to the Scottish play. "When do u witches wanna meet up next?" asks "witch #1" in a group text with her sisters. This sets the tone for the rest of the adaptation, which plays out in emoji-bedazzled text bubbles, supplemented by notifications, Facebook updates, notes, chat-room screenshots, and reminders ("12:00am / Time to kill Duncan"). The dialogue is a mix of kinda-Shakespearean rebuses and textspeak: after the murder, Macbeth frets, "All the [water emoji] in the [Hokusai-wave emoji] could not wash the blood off my [two-hands emoji]. I [ear emoji] knocking on the [door emoji]. some1 is comin to get me!" It's all ridiculous of course, but there's a method to its foolishness. Many conventions of the medium adapt surprisingly well: asides are rendered as undelivered texts, and stage directions are Foursquare updates. Rather than (just) pandering to its presumed teen audience, it provides a lens through which students can see dramatic possibilities. A Midsummer Night #nofilter publishes simultaneously.

Theater in general and Shakespeare in particular are notably protean, and the potential of this and its companions to inspire students to think outside the Globe is significant. (Graphic classic. 12 & up)

Pub Date: Jan. 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-553-53880-9

Page Count: 112

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Nov. 3, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2015

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Engrossing, contemplative, and as heart-wrenching as the title promises.

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THEY BOTH DIE AT THE END

What would you do with one day left to live?

In an alternate present, a company named Death-Cast calls Deckers—people who will die within the coming day—to inform them of their impending deaths, though not how they will happen. The End Day call comes for two teenagers living in New York City: Puerto Rican Mateo and bisexual Cuban-American foster kid Rufus. Rufus needs company after a violent act puts cops on his tail and lands his friends in jail; Mateo wants someone to push him past his comfort zone after a lifetime of playing it safe. The two meet through Last Friend, an app that connects lonely Deckers (one of many ways in which Death-Cast influences social media). Mateo and Rufus set out to seize the day together in their final hours, during which their deepening friendship blossoms into something more. Present-tense chapters, short and time-stamped, primarily feature the protagonists’ distinctive first-person narrations. Fleeting third-person chapters give windows into the lives of other characters they encounter, underscoring how even a tiny action can change the course of someone else’s life. It’s another standout from Silvera (History Is All You Left Me, 2017, etc.), who here grapples gracefully with heavy questions about death and the meaning of a life well-lived.

Engrossing, contemplative, and as heart-wrenching as the title promises. (Speculative fiction. 13-adult).

Pub Date: Sept. 5, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-06-245779-0

Page Count: 384

Publisher: HarperTeen

Review Posted Online: June 5, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2017

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Star-crossed lovers carve their own paths in an explosive conclusion that lives up to its title.

OUR VIOLENT ENDS

From the These Violent Delights series , Vol. 2

New monsters terrorize Shanghai amid political upheaval and the reignition of the blood feud between the Chinese Scarlet Gang and the Russian White Flowers.

The death of Marshall Seo unleashed a new wave of violence, but when a mysterious figure wielding control over more deadly-insect–releasing monsters begins extorting money from both gangs, their leaders agree to temporarily cooperate in the interests of eliminating a mutual foe. They order their respective heirs to find the blackmailer, and so, once again, Roma Montagov and Juliette Cai must work together for the benefit of those under their protection. But their feelings for each other—complicated by hidden truths, lingering love, and unforgiving duty—prove difficult to repress. Meanwhile, the time of revolution draws near: Workers continue to organize protests decrying both foreign occupation and gangster rule as the Nationalist Army marches toward Shanghai in its campaign to unite and reclaim the country. Secrets abound and loyalties are tested in this tightly plotted sequel featuring a multinational cast and told through multiple third-person perspectives, including those of supporting characters introduced in These Violent Delights (2020). Stubborn Rosalind, obliging Kathleen, and grief-stricken Benedikt all return to play vital roles that blend seamlessly into Roma’s and Juliette’s storylines as they each are forced to consider what it is they truly want and the lengths they will go to protect it.

Star-crossed lovers carve their own paths in an explosive conclusion that lives up to its title. (Historical fantasy. 13-18)

Pub Date: Nov. 16, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-534-45772-0

Page Count: 512

Publisher: McElderry

Review Posted Online: Sept. 18, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2021

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