In Wild Girls, Mary Stewart Atwell’s new debut novel, the young ladies of Swan River are changing. The “wild girls,” teenagers suddenly imbued with supernatural powers that give them both the ability and the will to murder, menace the town while Kate Riordan tries to hang on to both her life and her sanity. Inspired by this impressive debut, we’ve put together a list of what we consider to be some of the wildest teenagers in literature — from gang members to errant soldiers to kids making the best of a bad situation by going feral. See our choices after the jump, and if we missed your favorite literary teen on a rampage, be sure to add to our list in the comments. … Read More
romeo and juliet
If Romeo and Juliet were a mix-tape, what would the story on the B-side be? That’s the context for Ronald Wimberly’s forthcoming graphic novel Prince of Cats, which focuses on Juliet’s bad-boy cousin and Romeo’s ultimate foe, Tybalt. Set on the streets of ’80s Brooklyn (yet written in iambic pentameter, verily), the story begins with Tybalt’s return from private school and his almost immediate plunge into ongoing Capulet and Montague hostilities, Samarai style.
“Tybalt interested me because he embodied mindless youthful violence as a means to etch out identity,” Wimberly told us. Violent indeed — if you’re looking for some sad-sack tale about two angsty teenagers who kill themselves in the name of love, this version is not for you. But if you dig the brawls, or were always curious about Romeo’s first love Rosaline (who goes by Rosalyn here), then this may be the version of R&J you’ve been looking for. For an exclusive sneak peek, we invite you to click through some of our favorite panels from the book, which publishes September 11th. And now to Brooklyn Babel, Where we lay our scene… … Read More
The best of this week’s (admittedly lean) DVD releases is Coriolanus, the sleek and muscular Shakespeare adaptation from star and first-time director Ralph Fiennes. He’s been angling to bring the play to the screen for nearly a dozen years now, since he first played it on the London stage, and when the time came to do so, he did what many a filmmaker before him has done to make Shakespeare tenable to today’s audience: he modernized it. But the text is so open, and his staging is so robust, that the interpretation works; it couldn’t feel more timely and appropriate, with (perhaps intentional, perhaps accidental) allusions to the Tea Party, Congressional dysfunction, and the Occupy movement that land without the clumsiness that so often batters political cinema.
In honor of a job well done, we’ve assembled ten other films that altered the Bard’s plots and texts in a similarly entertaining fashion. Check them out after the jump, and add your own in the comments. … Read More
Special footwear for lit-geeks? Yes please. Yesterday’s edition of Shelf Awareness pointed us towards some sweet sneakers inspired by the art and text of literary classics like Slaughterhouse Five, The Catcher in the Rye, Romeo and Juliet and more, in a growing collection based on “fantastic books everyone should read before they die.” It’s a great idea, and hyper-nerdy in the best of ways, but a little hit-or-miss in its execution. For example, we adore the cream-colored Catcher kicks, but “Thou detestable maw, thou womb of death” is perhaps not the line we’d choose to have on our Romeo and Juliet-themed shoes if we had our druthers. All in all though, we think they’re pretty cool, and if we see anyone on the street wearing these sneakers paired with one of these, we will straight up hug them. That’s a promise. Click through to see some of the literary-themed sneaks, and if you too want to proclaim your stellar literary taste to the world, and possibly get a hug from us, be sure to pick up a pair over at Zazzle. … Read More
Sarah Schmelling turned a short but brilliant McSweeney’s article called “Hamlet (Facebook News Feed Edition)” into her new book, Ophelia Joined the Group Maidens Who Don’t Float. From a full news feed play-by-play of Shakespeare’s War of the Roses to a game of Scrabulous between Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the book reads like a funnier version of Cliff’s Notes, updated for the Facebook generation. After the jump, we’ve excerpted our favorite LOL bits, including Juliet’s profile, Miss Havisham’s favorite TV shows and the news feeds of Jay Gatsby and Humbert Humbert. Now if you’ll excuse us, we are totally friend requesting Holden… Read More