The forty-sixth book I read in 2014 was Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare. I finished this book on 5/31/14. I rated this book (really a play) 4.25 stars out of a scale of 5. This was actually a re-read for me since I read this in high school for my AP English class. This is one of my favorite works by Shakespeare, a comedy in which Countess Olivia falls in love with Viola, who is disguised as a young boy (Cesario). Viola falls in love with Orsino, the Duke of Illyria, but Orsino is in love with Olivia. And when Viola’s twin brother Sebastian shows up (looking exactly like the disguised Viola) and marries Olivia, all hell breaks lose.
To be honest one of the things I have always really liked about this play is a modern-day adaptation of it, She’s The Man starring Amanda Bynes and Channing Tatum. The characters names are even the same as in the Shakespeare play. The movie is set in a school named Illyria, where Amanda Bynes (Viola) disguises herself as a boy to be able to play on the soccer team. This has been one of my favorite all time movies and is a funny adaptation of Twelfth Night.
There is something really beautiful about the way Shakespeare rights, even though sometimes it can be a little hard to follow. There are a lot of words, phrases, and references that readers today might not understand. That’s why I found the “Pelican Shakespeare” vision so easy to use, there were footnotes that explained various words, phrases, and references. Shakespeare’s plays can sometimes be difficult to work your way through but I would definitely recommend giving Twelfth Night a read. Its funny and interesting and full of plot twists. Great read!
Link to Wikipedia article on Twelfth Night play: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twelfth_Night
Link to website about William Shakespeare: http://www.william-shakespeare.info/
Link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Twelfth-night-What-you-will/dp/B007EQG6N8/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1401572457&sr=1-2-fkmr1&keywords=twelfth+night+edited+by+jonathan+crewe
The forty-fifth book I read in 2014 was Viscount Breckenridge to the Rescue by Stephanie Laurens. I finished this book on 5/30/14. This is the 16th book in the Cynster family series and the 1st book in the Cynster Sisters trilogy. The Cynster Sisters trilogy is actually a sub-series within the Cynster family series. I have read other books in the series and have many other blog posts on them. This book was actually a re-read for me since I’ve read it before. This time I rated it 3.75 stars out of a scale of 5. This book tells the story of Heather Cynster any Viscount Breckenridge. Very early in the novel, Heather is kidnapped and Breckenridge just happens to witness it. He follows the carriage that kidnapped Heather and attempts to save her. Heather has learned from her kidnappers though that they were abduct “one of the Cynster sisters” and therefore she wants to learn Moe about the reason for her abduction before she’ll allow Breckenridge to save her. Her sisters could potentially be in danger too and Heather will do anything to protect them.
When her abductors arrive with her in Gretna Green, however, Heather realizes that she can’t postpone being rescued any longer. She and Breckenridge then decide to walk to the Vale, which is apparently a three day journey. At the Vale they then spend 50-100 pages miscommunicating with one another. Which while probably realistic is incredibly drawn out for readers. The heroine in this book was the epitome of stubborn and it was very frustrating. The plot line of the beginning of this book was very interesting as we are trying to figure out why Heather was kidnapped and where they’re going and what not. But I found that I really had to push myself through the 100pages of the book whether Heather and Breckenridge are basically circling around each other, each loving the other but not wanting to be the first to admit it and not even wanting to show it first.
I love the Cynster family series, don’t get me wrong, but after the 16th one I am starting to get tired of the pattern. Each book has a very similar pattern, we have a hero and heroine each with a strong and stubborn personality, they have sex and fall on love and struggle to admit to each other that they are in love. I think that her books are great and I would highly recommend them to readers but I don’t know if I would recommend reading all 20 in the series. Maybe that’s why there aren’t many authors who write series’ with 20 books.
One thing I do want to talk a little about is the mention of Gretna Green. This comes up in a lot of historical romance novels. It is a place just over the border of Scotland (from England) where couples in love could run away to get married. This is swell known by the heroine in the book and what leads her to allowing Breckenridge to rescue her so she can avoid being married to the mysterious laird who had her abducted. This apparently was because of a law that was enacted in England in 1754 allowing the guardian of a person under the age of 21 to prevent marriages simply by rejecting the match. According to Wikipedia, in Scotland the age of consent for boys was only 14 and for girls only 12.
Link to Wikipedia website on Gretna Green: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gretna_Green
Link to author website: http://www.stephanielaurens.com/
Link to Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Viscount-Breckenridge-Rescue-Cynster-Sisters/dp/0062068601/ref=tmm_mmp_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1401501271&sr=1-1