Book Reviews of Ophelia

Ophelia
Ophelia
Author: Lisa Klein
ISBN-13: 9781582348018
ISBN-10: 1582348014
Publication Date: 10/31/2006
Pages: 336
Reading Level: Young Adult
Rating:
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 12

3.6 stars, based on 12 ratings
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's Books
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

8 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed Ophelia on + 29 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
I really just have two words to desctibe this book.

LOVED IT!

This was a really fast read. I thin it has taken me about 3 days to get through, and I really didn't have all that much reading time. So it was a quick easy read, and I think that is what I am racing now days.

This is the story of Ophelia. Yes, That Ophelia, from Hamlet. Lisa Klein decided that it was just to tragic to let Ophelia die as it shows in the play, but that she contrived a way to continue living dispite the horrors and revenge were plagued upon Elsinore and Denmark.

I got quite wrapped up in this story. I have always loved historical romances, and I love reading different author's thought's and feelings on a pre-existing work. I love William Shakespear. I have a fondness for YA novels... Put them all together, and what do you get? Ophelia

I shall say no more because to do so I would probably end up giving away the whole plot, and my sister hates when I do that.
reviewed Ophelia on + 5 more book reviews
This book is perfect for anyone who loves classics and wants to read a retelling or twisted version of a well known tale. It's also just as good to those who are being introduced to a classic for the first time through this book. You may read more of what I have to say about it on my book blog.
reviewed Ophelia on + 962 more book reviews
Shakespeare's tragedy, Hamlet, is practically required reading for every English student. But how much is really known about Ophelia, Hamlet's "girl," who goes mad and commits suicide in the original play?

Lisa Klein offers us a different perspective on the undeveloped Shakespearean character. Ophelia is a strong-willed and beautiful young woman living in the often treacherous world of court intrigue. For the most part shunned and used by her father and brother, the once tomboyish and willful Ophelia grows into a lady with wit and passion under the wings of court women such as Queen Gertrude. Yet she sometimes feels separate from the rest of the ladies when they speak of things such as love and marriage.

That is, of course, until she crosses paths with Prince Hamlet. Their attraction for one another is undeniable, and Ophelia soon finds herself spiraling downwards into love. But when, after the suspicious death of his father the king, Hamlet's passion for Ophelia turns into a dreadful passion for revenge, Ophelia must carve out her own path, with or without her love, if she wants to live.

It is refreshing to have one of Shakespeare's usually passive female characters retold as a strong personality. Ophelia is very much a modern woman stuck in the early seventeenth century; you can find hearty doses of feminism and religious zeal in many passages throughout. Supporting characters, however, are incompletely sketched, and I never felt any real connection with Ophelia and Hamlet's love for one another.

About half of the book focuses on what actually occurs in the play; the rest is about Ophelia's attempt to survive away from Elsinore. Because she ends up at a convent, the second half of the book is very much focused on religion and finding peace with oneself, so much so that at times it can begin to sound preachy. Likewise, Ophelia seemed to approach the reliving of her past at arm's length, and that, I think, unfortunately detracted from the story's intimacy and appeal.

Overall, however, Ophelia is an interesting way to reapproach a familiar piece of literature. If you're looking for something pro-feminism with period language that sounds genuine, pick this one up.
reviewed Ophelia on + 962 more book reviews
Shakespeare's tragedy, Hamlet, is practically required reading for every English student. But how much is really known about Ophelia, Hamlet's "girl," who goes mad and commits suicide in the original play?

Lisa Klein offers us a different perspective on the undeveloped Shakespearean character. Ophelia is a strong-willed and beautiful young woman living in the often treacherous world of court intrigue. For the most part shunned and used by her father and brother, the once tomboyish and willful Ophelia grows into a lady with wit and passion under the wings of court women such as Queen Gertrude. Yet she sometimes feels separate from the rest of the ladies when they speak of things such as love and marriage.

That is, of course, until she crosses paths with Prince Hamlet. Their attraction for one another is undeniable, and Ophelia soon finds herself spiraling downwards into love. But when, after the suspicious death of his father the king, Hamlet's passion for Ophelia turns into a dreadful passion for revenge, Ophelia must carve out her own path, with or without her love, if she wants to live.

It is refreshing to have one of Shakespeare's usually passive female characters retold as a strong personality. Ophelia is very much a modern woman stuck in the early seventeenth century; you can find hearty doses of feminism and religious zeal in many passages throughout. Supporting characters, however, are incompletely sketched, and I never felt any real connection with Ophelia and Hamlet's love for one another.

About half of the book focuses on what actually occurs in the play; the rest is about Ophelia's attempt to survive away from Elsinore. Because she ends up at a convent, the second half of the book is very much focused on religion and finding peace with oneself, so much so that at times it can begin to sound preachy. Likewise, Ophelia seemed to approach the reliving of her past at arm's length, and that, I think, unfortunately detracted from the story's intimacy and appeal.

Overall, however, Ophelia is an interesting way to reapproach a familiar piece of literature. If you're looking for something pro-feminism with period language that sounds genuine, pick this one up.
reviewed Ophelia on + 62 more book reviews
This series was on the "most wanted" list at the local middle school library. Very popular with the girls.
reviewed Ophelia on + 7145 more book reviews
Reviewed by Marta Morrison for TeensReadToo.com

This book blew me away. It is the re-imagining of the story of Ophelia, from Shakespeare's play Hamlet. In the play, Ophelia is in love with Hamlet and ends up committing suicide because of his treatment of her and because he killed her father. Her character is a woman who is ruled by the thoughts and deeds of men. It is their deeds and rules that affect her and bring about her demise. In this story, Ophelia is a very strong character and we see the story of Hamlet through her eyes.

She is the daughter of Polonius, a foolish man who courts favor of those in power. She is motherless and her only other family is her brother, Laertes. Her childhood, though, is very happy because she is a tomboy and is free to learn beside her brother. She has a lot of freedom, which is rarely given to girls at this time. Her father is given a job in the court of the King of Denmark, and she has to leave this idyllic time and enter into a drafty, gloomy place. In fact, it is described as a prison and a place of intrigue and sadness.

Within a few years she is brought to the attention of Queen Gertrude and is made into a lady of the court. She also attracts the attention of Prince Hamlet. She and the Prince fall in love and are secretly married. The King's ghost appears on the night of their marriage, and Hamlet is obsessed with revenge. Ophelia has to sail through court politics to secure her place and her sanity.

Lisa Klein has interwoven lines from the play in the story and the main story stills stands, but by the end we know what happens to Ophelia. There is a lot of philosophical musings in the story about a woman's place compared to a man's, what is sin, forgiveness, obedience and God's will in ones life.

I think the story compelled me to see the play again and to have a happier vision of the character of Ophelia. I strongly recommend this book and you don't have to know Hamlet to read it. I do believe that to read this alongside the reading of Hamlet would be beneficial to the understandings and themes in this tragedy.
reviewed Ophelia on
I thoroughly enjoyed this book! The beginning was a little slow, but it picked up. I've never actually read "Hamlet" but I'm pretty sure it stayed relatively close to the original plot. The end seemed exaggerated and a little long, but a good book is a good book. And this is a good book :)
reviewed Ophelia on + 7145 more book reviews
Reviewed by Marta Morrison for TeensReadToo.com

This book blew me away. It is the re-imagining of the story of Ophelia, from Shakespeare's play Hamlet. In the play, Ophelia is in love with Hamlet and ends up committing suicide because of his treatment of her and because he killed her father. Her character is a woman who is ruled by the thoughts and deeds of men. It is their deeds and rules that affect her and bring about her demise. In this story, Ophelia is a very strong character and we see the story of Hamlet through her eyes.

She is the daughter of Polonius, a foolish man who courts favor of those in power. She is motherless and her only other family is her brother, Laertes. Her childhood, though, is very happy because she is a tomboy and is free to learn beside her brother. She has a lot of freedom, which is rarely given to girls at this time. Her father is given a job in the court of the King of Denmark, and she has to leave this idyllic time and enter into a drafty, gloomy place. In fact, it is described as a prison and a place of intrigue and sadness.

Within a few years she is brought to the attention of Queen Gertrude and is made into a lady of the court. She also attracts the attention of Prince Hamlet. She and the Prince fall in love and are secretly married. The King's ghost appears on the night of their marriage, and Hamlet is obsessed with revenge. Ophelia has to sail through court politics to secure her place and her sanity.

Lisa Klein has interwoven lines from the play in the story and the main story stills stands, but by the end we know what happens to Ophelia. There is a lot of philosophical musings in the story about a woman's place compared to a man's, what is sin, forgiveness, obedience and God's will in ones life.

I think the story compelled me to see the play again and to have a happier vision of the character of Ophelia. I strongly recommend this book and you don't have to know Hamlet to read it. I do believe that to read this alongside the reading of Hamlet would be beneficial to the understandings and themes in this tragedy.