Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare Review

Thursday, 4 June 2015
Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare
Publication: 1597, by Washington Square Press
Genre: Fiction, Plays, Romance, Classic
Pages: 130
Format: Hardcover
Source: Borrowed

A paperback copy of Shakespeare's popular romance play, Romeo and Juliet, which provides the original text side-by-side with a more modernized version of the material, which can aid readers in understanding the content.

My Thoughts: 

For years and years, I guess I can say that I haven’t been the brightest person when it comes to be reading classics. I just read the basics that was essential for school and my classes, or what everyone else has been reading. Just kidding—I adore classics. But until reading and coming across Romeo and Juliet for my English class,  I feel like I was the sore loser of reading. I’ve tried Jane Austen, and it wasn’t as good as THIS WAS. Shakespeare is my love, my friends.

Before reading this, I’ve barely read a play before. I’ve always thought that it’s a lame way of actually reading a book since there are different roles and things like that. But now, I feel that it’s a whole different experience and way of reading since there’s fifty times of more emotion. Isn’t that what matters—the feels? This play, yes, was a tragedy and all, but there was so much more to the story than what the eye meets at. No, for me it wasn’t a story about stupid teenagers who are willing to kill themselves over the loss of not being able to be with each other, but it instead was a story with many themes and events that created and shaped literature. 

“Towards him I made, but he was ware of me, and stole into the covert of the wood; I, measuring his affections by my own, which then most sought where most might not be found,” (I. i. 120-124)

I think that if one hasn’t ever read a Shakespeare play before, they haven’t ever experienced classic literature. It doesn’t matter if you’ve read Brontë before, this IS COMPLETELY DIFFERENT. You may have been caught in the stereotype of Shakespeare being difficult to read, but it actually isn’t. If you have a few translations by your side and if you’re willing to spend some time analyzing it all, then I believe that you’ll be perfectly fine. It’s the meaning that counts, no?

I guess I really don’t have to recall and reenact the whole play and describe it scene by scene since you most likely already know what it’s about. Even if you haven’t read it before, everyone knows the story. *asks 9 year old* 9 year olds even know what the story holds! But yeah, this goes through the story of two feuding families, the Capulets and Montagues. Romeo is a Montague and Juliet is a Capulet, and they meet at a Capulet party hosted by Juliet’s father. Juliet’s supposed to marry this other guy named Paris, who is actually kinda in love with her. But she hates it, and she falls in love with Romeo instantly when they meet and he the same with her. BAM. I’m not going to spoil anything more, but I bet that you can already guess what happens next. 

Though it took me about a month to read this since we had to read it (and actually perform it) at school, it was a quick read looking at the majority of it. The whole play is separated into five acts, with about 3-6 scenes in each. It’s about 120 pages in total, especially by looking at my borrowed edition. Each scene was basically separated with importance, and some kind of big important event was written in each. *thinks of the gorgeous balcony scene*

It’s so interesting to find that with this play, Shakespeare was the first writer/poet to actually bring romance with tragedy and make it work. I read that he was the one who took the risk in literature during the Renaissance period in England, and this is truly magnificent. I wonder what the world of literature and books would be if his genre of poetry hadn’t existed. *cries* I’m so thankful to have discovered this play at the perfect time where I can actually understand it to the fullest extent. Hey, I’m also 14 as our protagonists are! But don’t worry, I don’t want to think about falling in love at first sight, so it’s all okay. Haha.

This is a classic love story, and I’m sure that some people don’t realize that. It has so many spiritual connections that have to do with God and their marriage. When we actually think about it (without really knowing the answers to all of the questions), Shakespeare knew what he was doing here. People think that it’s stupid that this is full of teenagers who don’t know what they’re doing, but it’s the story that revolves around the characters that makes this possible. What if this was a 40 year old man and woman falling in love? They obviously wouldn’t be together since this has to do with their feuding families! We should all think about the story that lies behind it all, just saying. 

THE ROMANCE WAS SO REAL AND MADE ME GIGGLE CONSTANTLY. Okay, there was some unrealistic elements revolving Romeo’s side of the story, since he just had been heartbroken over Rosaline, his ex, but it’s a story. Why do people assume that everything has to reflect reality and contemporary stories? I know some people who actually disagree with the fact that their love was real and everything, but I just feel like smacking them in the face. *face palms self* 

“Then have my lips the sin that they have took.Sin from my lips? O trespass sweetly urg’d! Give me my sin again.”  (I. v. 107-109)

Romeo and Juliet were both spectacular characters. When a scene came around and it only reflected one of them, I felt that us readers were able to gain a better connection and relationship with them that would eventually lead to our feelings of the end of the book, and that’s another reason for my perfect rating in this case, by the way. I preferred Juliet, but Romeo sure was a cutie, though I rather not think about Romeo since I think about the guy who played him in my class. *shivers* Gross. THOUGH THE CHARACTER WAS MY TRUE LOVE. 

Looking at the themes and messages Shakespeare shot at us readers, it is like a modern story. Hey, we’ve all seen the remake of the film with Leonardo DiCaprio, and that was done in the 90s, trying to forget about the ballroom dresses that we all imagine when we picture the setting of the novel. There’s feuding families, issues between parents (like Capulet cheating on Lady Capulet and the thing with Tybalt) and it reflects the lives of many. All readers can definitely think about the story as REAL somehow. I ADORED IT SO MUCH.

Some people say that they wouldn’t read Romeo and Juliet because of the predictability of the ending. YES, everyone knows the ending of the play. But that ending isn’t what forms the novel into something wonderful and memorable, it’s the things in between that makes schools want everyone to read this. Hopefully, my school wasn’t thinking of getting us to read this to prove us a lesson of not falling in love too early or whatever. That’d be a whole other story, but I’ll save that story for another time. *winks* Yeah, now I’m going to go online and order a gorgeous copy of all of Shakespeare’s plays, and devour them just like I did with this gorgeous beauty. GO AND FALL IN LOVE, EVERYONE.

Have you read Shakespeare before? LOVED IT?


  1. I LOVE ROMEO AND JULIET! I'm so glad you love it too! It's awesome and I really like Shakespeare:)

    1. WOOOOO! I'm so glad to hear that you enjoyed it, Kitty! There were tons of haters in my class, sadly. :( I'm so excited to read his other works!

  2. I read this last year for my English class too, and I thought that it was very easy to follow. I like Juliet way more than I did Romeo, but it was still a cleverly written play.

    1. Yes, definitely! It was so unlike anything else I've ever read, and it seems like the absolute start and gear that many authors have followed to write their romances! :)


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