Book Review: Kissing Shakespeare

Kissing Shakespeare - Pamela Mingle

Book: Kissing Shakespeare


Author: Pamela Mingle


Genre: Fiction/Teen/Time Travel/Historical/Romance


Summary: Miranda has Shakespeare in her blood; she hopes one day to become a Shakespearean actor like her famous parents. At least, she does until her disastrous performance in her school’s staging of The Taming of the Shrew. Humiliated, Miranda skips the opening-night party. All she wants to do is hide. Fellow cast member Stephen Langford has other plans for Miranda. When he steps out of the backstage shadows and asks her if she like to meet Shakespeare, Miranda thinks he’s a total nutcase. But before she can object, Stephen whisks her back to sixteenth-century England - the world he’s really from. He wants Miranda to use her acting talents and modern-day charms on the young Will Shakespeare - who is showing alarming signs of taking a very different path in life. Without her help, Stephen claims, the world’s greatest plays will never be written. Miranda isn’t convinced that she’s the girl for the job. Why would Shakespeare care about her? And just who is this infuriating time traveler, Stephen Langford? Still, she reluctantly agrees to help. After all, Stephen promises that once Miranda’s part is played, he will return her to the present and she can get on with her “real” life. What Miranda doesn’t bargain for is finding true love … with no acting required. - Random House, 2013.


I picked up this book in Barnes & Noble a year or so ago. I love Shakespeare and the plot pulled me in, so why not? 


I did enjoy the book. Miranda is a very tough, no nonsense girl who adapts very well to the situations she is placed in. She is clever, honest, and very “normal”. I liked her and her journey, her “coming of age” so to speak, was explored extremely well. I loved Stephen. He’s a very sassy guy and I loved his wit.


The story itself is very easy read. The plot is very straight forward and doesn’t deviate in the slightest. It reminds me of the plot of a Doctor Who episode. You might want to be aware of Shakespeare and his works before reading this. Mingle does make references without explaining them so I would advise brushing up on your Shakespeare. She does, however, explain the clothing and customs of Shakespearean England well so you’re not left in the dark.


Mingle is able to balance the multiple plots and keep them entwined in such a way as to not deviate from one so much as to damage the others. There are clear character changes - Miranda at the beginning of the novel is not the same Miranda at the end of the novel. The character development is believable though the romance seems a little forced sometimes.


The ending itself, without spoiling anything of course, is very bittersweet and I was so angry at the end! I’ve heard Mingle is making plans for a sequel though so I’m crossing my fingers and hoping! The ending was totally unfair! 


Overall, I enjoyed the book very much and it’s a light read. If you’re looking for a feel-good story where there is little to no complicated details, this is a book you’ll have fun with.


I give Kissing Shakespeare an A-.




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