Romeo & Juliet by William Shakespeare

Literature’s original star-crossed lovers: Romeo and Juliet. Their story has always been a classic among Shakespeare fans, English teachers, and teens alike.

When the Capulets have a masquerade party, Mercutio and Benvolio decide to crash, convincing Romeo to attend in hopes of him getting over Rosaline. Romeo and Juliet meet not knowing who the other is and it is not until Juliet asks her Nurse that she learns that he is the son of her family’s rival.

The rest of the story is essentially the two “star-crossed lovers” trying to get together without upsetting their families and things don’t exactly go as planned. A few mistakes are made and the consequences are tragic.

If you’re not comfortable with reading Shakespeare, you could get the SparkNotes version, but honestly, the English “translation” butchers the original Shakespearean text. In my opinion (even though I read the SparkNotes the third time around), I don’t recommend it at all. Read the original text. Then you’ll get the full value and bragging rights.

And, apparently Stephenie Meyer’s inspiration for her book New Moon was Romeo & Juliet. Boy, am I sorry Shakespeare, I know you must be rolling in your grave.

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