Skip to main content

Saving Hamlet

Review

Saving Hamlet

SAVING HAMLET is a fun, adventurous book that takes readers back to William Shakespeare’s time at the Globe Theatre along with the main character, Emma.

Teenager Emma is the assistant stage manager at her school’s drama club, but she is unexpectedly promoted to the stage manager position. Making things even more complicated, her crush, Brandon, is the director, and her best friend, Lulu, doesn’t get the role she wants. Instead, a soccer player named Josh is cast in the role of Hamlet, and Emma needs to help him learn the part if she wants the play to be a success. When Emma suddenly falls through the trapdoor in the stage and is transported to the Globe Theatre’s production of “Hamlet,” she must juggle two different productions of the famous play.

"Booth did an excellent job for her first novel, and I eagerly look forward to what she releases next. SAVING HAMLET is the Shakespearean time-traveling novel I never knew I needed on my bookshelf."

While I was originally a bit confused as to how the time traveling aspect of this story would work, I thought it was handled very well and fit the plot instead of being shoehorned in. I also enjoyed the fact that the story focused on a character who was involved in being behind the scenes of the theatre, rather than actually onstage. I haven’t read a book where the character was a stage manager, and I think this really helped the book to stand apart from others.

Even though I thought some of the characters were a bit stereotypical and over the top at the beginning, I was really impressed by their development throughout the book and ended up enjoying the characters very much. However, I do wish the dialogue had been a bit more realistic at some points. I thought the differences between our time and Shakespeare’s time were handled very well, and there were many scenes set in Shakespeare’s era that I thought were very funny.

I definitely thought that the book got much more interesting as it went along. While the beginning wasn’t the most thrilling, it did a good job laying the foundation for the events of the story to start happening. There were a few minor plot twists that I was a bit surprised by, and I thought that Booth did a good job of incorporating these into the story. However, I didn’t like the vague backstory references that sometimes popped up. While most of these were eventually explained, they confused me at first and made it seem like the characters disliked things for no reason.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of theatre, Shakespeare or “Hamlet.” I really loved reading a YA book set in the theatre, and it was great for Emma to be involved in stage managing. I think that Booth did an excellent job for her first novel, and I eagerly look forward to what she releases next. SAVING HAMLET is the Shakespearean time-traveling novel I never knew I needed on my bookshelf.

Reviewed by Breck G., Teen Board Member on December 13, 2017

Saving Hamlet
by Molly Booth

  • Publication Date: November 7, 2017
  • Genres: Fiction, Romance, Young Adult 12+
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
  • ISBN-10: 1484743784
  • ISBN-13: 9781484743782