Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Enter Three Witches - Caroline B. Cooney

Mary's life seems to be right on track. She's betrothed to a nobleman, she's in the Macbeth household - a well thought of family, and she is treated very nicely by all she meets. But Scotland is at war with Norway and everything changes in a blink of an eye. Her father turns traitor, Macbeth meets three witches that prophesy great things for him, and then the murdering begins.

Cooney adds several new characters to the story. There is Swin the Scullery maid who is stealing food to feed her grandfather. Ildred, the lady's maid who is in reduced circumstances as the ninth daughter of a poor nobleman who is no longer able to afford any dowries. And, of course, there is Mary, an innocent girl who has to make some difficult decisions if she is going to survive.

I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this. I knew the story, I had seen the play, read the play, acted the play, etc...and frankly wasn't that interested in reading an adapted version. But I really got swept away. The setting, the characters, the mood, it all came alive with fantastic writing. It would be great for teens who have already read Macbeth and probably even better for those that haven't. I have a feeling it would draw them in and make them want to explore Shakespeare further.

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