Wednesday, July 08, 2009
One of the things I loved about Lisa Mantchev's Eyes Like Stars was the premise. It was imaginative. It was playful. She took familiar (or familiarish) characters and breathed new life into them. Mantchev's characters are based on some Shakespearian characters. Some may be familiar to readers. (Some Shakespeare plays are still required reading after all.) Others may be new to readers. But this isn't one of those instances where you'd be helplessly lost if you weren't familiar with Shakespeare's plays. And Mantchev doesn't only refer back to Shakespeare. Her Theatre Illuminata houses all the characters from all the plays.
I'm sure you've noticed this trend like I have--of writers drawing from past characters and breathing new life into these stories. Two examples from children's literature that I can think of are Peter Pan and Alice in Wonderland. But even Anne Shirley and Winnie the Pooh are getting revisited these days. And in the world of adult literature, can anyone doubt the trendiness of Austen prequels, sequels, and retellings? Zombies and vampires, oh my, and all in one year.
How do you feel about these retellings, these reimaginings, these prequels, sequels, and companion novels?
Do you have a favorite you'd hold up as an example of a job well done? Do you have a least favorite?
Are these books you tend to avoid or seek out?
Supernatural creatures have begun to invade classics recently, which classics would you like to see zombiefied or vampired in the future? Which classics do you think could be made better by adding a werewolf or two?
Throw out a premise or two if you like! How would you like to spin a familiar story?
Other stops on the tour:
The 160 Acre Woods, A Christian Worldview of Fiction, A Patchwork of Books, Abby the Librarian, All About Children’s Books, And Another Book Read, Becky’s Book Reviews, Dolce Bellezza, Fireside Musings, The Friendly Book Nook, Homeschool Book Buzz, Homespun Light, Hyperbole, KidzBookBuzz.com, Never Jam Today, Reading is My Superpower, Through a Child’s Eyes
© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews