That Way Madness Lies: 15 of Shakespeare’s Most Notable Works Reimagined ↞ 2021 Full Anthology Review/Break Down

HI friends, welcome back to my blog! I wasn’t planning on doing a full review for this anthology but I was in a Shakespeare mood and I love talking about new releases so I figured I would do a quick breakdown of my thoughts on Dahlia Adler’s new Shakespeare Reimagined anthology that came out in March!

This isn’t a really in depth review because I didn’t take enough notes when I read it, but it does give you a good idea of what I thought of each story and the anthology as a whole (as someone who doesn’t typically enjoy short stories).

Book Cover

That Way Madness Lies: 15 of Shakespeare’s Most Notable Works ReimaginedEdited by Dahlia Adler / Stories by Emily Wibberley & Austin Siegemund-Broka, Mark Oshiro, Kayla Ancrum, Anna-Marie McLemore, Lily Anderson, Amy Rose Capetta & Cory McCarthy, Dahlia Adler, Brittany Cavallaro, Kiersten White, Lindsay Smith, Tochi Onyebuchi, Joy McCullough, Patrice Caldwell, Samantha Mabry, Melissa Bashardoust

YA, Short Stories, Reimaging, Fantasy/Contemporary/Sci-Fi/Romance, Queer

Publication Date: March 16, 2021

Trigger Warnings: racism, antisemitism, homophobia, child neglect, physical abuse/violence, child abuse, emotional abuse, grooming, loss of a loved one, self-harm, miscarriage

Overall Rating: ⭐⭐⭐

I am traditionally not a short story reader – I usually DNF collections like these or just ignore them altogether since it’s so rare for me to read a short story and enjoy it. But, then I heard about a collection inspired by Shakespeare’s works and on top of that, that some of my favourite authors would be a part of it and I knew this would be the be all end all for myself and short stories.

I still think that I am 99% not a lover of short stories but, I did genuinely enjoy some of these which I think was entirely down to the writers. I genuinely think that I would read a shopping list if it was written by K Ancrum or Anna-Marie Mclemore.

C O M E D I E S

“Severe Weather Warning” – Emily W and Austin SB (The Tempest) ↣ 3 ⭐
Fun. I loved the storm and the forced discussion trope.

“Shipwrecked” – Mark Oshiro (Twelfth Night) ↣ 2 ⭐
I couldn’t keep track of who any of the characters were but I did really enjoy how diverse the characters were along with the talk about how love doesn’t need to be romantic or compulsory.

“Taming of The Soulmate” – K Ancrum (Taming of The Shrew) ↣ 3.5 ⭐
When your favourite author champions the ultimate fanfic soulmate trope! I don’t even like this trope but this is one of my favourite stories in the collection so far, I LOVE how K Ancrum writes characters!

“King of The Fairies” – Anna-Marie Mclemore (A Midsummer Night’s Dream) ↣ 2.75 ⭐
Definitely interesting, I really love AMM’s writing and it’s what kept me reading the story.

“We Have Seen Better Days” – Lily Anderson (As You Like It) ↣ 2 ⭐
+0.5 stars just for Lily Anderson supporting Solo: A Star Wars Story. Otherwise, I didn’t like this one.

“Some Other Metal” – Amy Rose Capetta and Cory McCarthy (Much Ado About Nothing) ↣ 1.5 ⭐
Too meta for me. I thought I would love this because I usually love Much Ado but this was a no from the very beginning.

“I Bleed” – Dahlia Adler (Ther Merchant of Venice) ↣ 3 ⭐
Very disturbing and hard to read, but this was definitely one of the better stories in the collection.

A – S O N E T

“His Invention” – Brittany Cavallaro (Sonnet 147) ↣ 4 ⭐
This was so good! Disturbing and a bit confusing in the beginning but definitely my favourite story in the collection so far and one I’d actually read again!

T R A G E D I E S

“Partying Is Such Sweet Sorrow” – Kiersten White (Romeo + Juliet) ↣ 3 ⭐
Texts are one of my least favourite ways to tell a story but, this was actually really good, which is even more surprising because I am not an R+J fan. I loved the characters and how ridiculous Romeo was and I really think this story put in perspective how quickly the R+J story moves.

“Dreaming of The Dark” – Lindsay Smith (Julius Caesar) ↣ 3 ⭐
Spooky vibes. I think I liked this one but I’m not really sure.

“The Tragedy of Cory Lanez” – Tochi Onyebuchi (Coriolanus) ↣ 3.25 ⭐
I felt a bit detached from this one but I think that was just because it’s music-centric which I’m not usually a fan of, otherwise this was really good.

“Out of the Storm” – Joy McCullough (King Lear) ↣ 3 ⭐
That moved very quickly and was very hard to read.

“Elsinore” – Patrice Caldwell (Hamlet) ↣ 1 ⭐
So so SO boring.

“We Fail” – Samantha Mabry (Macbeth) ↣ 3.5 ⭐
One of the best Macbeth retellings I’ve ever read!

L A T E – R O M A N C E

“Lost Girl” – Melissa Bashardoust (The Winter’s Tale) ↣ _ ⭐
This was cute. I loved the addition of all the other little stories and mythologies.

Are you a Shakespeare fan?
Have you read this anthology?

Goodreads | StoryGraph | Instagram | Letterboxd | TV Time | Twitter | Tumblr | Libro.fm Code

6 thoughts on “That Way Madness Lies: 15 of Shakespeare’s Most Notable Works Reimagined ↞ 2021 Full Anthology Review/Break Down

  1. I’ve read a lot of Shakespeare but haven’t heard of this collection. There was a collection of full novels a few years ago written by different authors, each of which took a play an reimagined it – Margaret Atwood’s ‘Hagseed’ (The Tempest) was pretty good.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh yes, I’ve heard of those novels but haven’t gotten around to them yet. They are on my tbr though!!
      I definitely recommend this but only if you like YA. It’s a quick read and has some really imaginative takes on the originals stories!

      Like

  2. I rated this one pretty average as well – I am not sure if it was the stories in particular or if my little knowledge of Shakespeare’s originals lessened my own enjoyment. Either way, I did adore Adler’s and Ancrum’s inclusions in this anthology.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think it didn’t help me personally that I hadn’t read all of the originals, but yeah, some of these stories just weren’t my cup of tea!

      Yes, those two were so good!

      Like

Tell me your thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s