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3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  8,701 Ratings  ·  776 Reviews
In this reimagining of Shakespeare's tragedy, Ophelia must choose between her love for Hamlet and her own life. In a surprising twist, she devises a plan to escape from Elsinore forever . . . with one very dangerous secret. Sharp and literary, dark and romantic, this dramatic story holds readers in its grip until the final, heartrending scene.
Paperback, 328 pages
Published January 1st 2008 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens (first published October 31st 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Aug 04, 2009 Bex rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
Okay so I think my star rating needs some explaining.

I loved Part 1 and most of Part 2. If the book had stopped there I would have given this 3-4 stars. Probably 4. But now, the book continues for another 100 pages of the most boring rambling "Finding God" story arch which doesn't so much arch as drivels along in a slow straight line.

I thought the whole last third of the book was so bad, the entire story gets 1 star.

I had to skim through most of the ending because it was so boring. Ophelia didn
Nov 09, 2014 Britt rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katie  Wornson
Yeah...they do stuff. Was good 'till that point. I can see the writer's reasoning for putting that section in there, but I thought it ruined the story.
Dec 16, 2008 Yolanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 01, 2013 Emma rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
To be completely honest, I'm perplexed as to why people were unimpressed. Shakespeare is hard to do, and I think for what it was, she did an amazing job. No, it wasn't perfect. But I think that even attempting a project like this is ambitious, and I think she kind of nailed it, to be frank.

It was sculpted wonderfully, had many different emotions coursing through the pages, and left you thinking by the end. Those are three very positive things, and I was impressed. It may have been short, but the
Julia Marie
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 20, 2011 Rebecca rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya
Seriously, this is Hamlet fanfic, with Ophelia/Horatio as the OTP.

I can't help but compare this (unfavorably) to Ursula K. LeGuin's Lavinia. Both examine a famous male-dominated text from the perspective of the extremely marginalized love interest. But LeGuin brilliantly turns the story on its head. Her Lavinia has a strong enough voice of her own to really bring a new perspective to the Aeneid. I felt like the original gained new depths as a result.

Ophelia, on the other hand, is a pale shadow
"O, woe is me
To have seen what I have seen, see what I see!"- Ophelia, Act III, Scene I

Setting:Elsinore, Denmark and St. Emilion, France; 1585-1603

Coverly Love?:No; while the girl is beautiful, I would have liked a bit more in terms of design.

Plot:Who is the real Ophelia? That is the question. In this evocative, imaginative retelling, Lisa Klein brings a fresh new take on the one of the most tragic figures in literary history. Ophelia is a tomboyish girl at the start, who finds favor in not
Clary Fray
Apr 29, 2010 Clary Fray rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You get sucked in instantaneously to this cunning and devilishly smart novel called OPHELIA. The main character, Ophelia, is headstrong, determined, and lovestruck. When the wonderful and beautiful Hamlet enters her life, Ophelia is hypnotized.Even though he is a prince and she is the Queens lowest lady-in-waiting, the two stop at nothing to be together. When Hamlet's father is poisoned, the Queen becomes very grief stricken, going to Ophelia for support and a welcome ear. Then the notorious Kin ...more
Dec 06, 2011 Cat rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I think this idea is fabulous. I played Hamlet, myself, in an all-female production and was really interested in hearing different ideas about what went on between Ophelia and Hamlet as my Ophelia and I played with those ideas on stage. A look into Ophelia's mentality throughout the process of the play also interested me greatly.

That said, I think this book is terrible. The author's patching bits of the original, Shakespearean text into scenes that aren't in the play and then using dialogue that
Lauren Fidler
2.5 stars

here is my essential question: do i love metafiction or do i hate it? i really don't know and this book isn't helping me decide.

first off, i was sort the premise. i am a die-hard hamlet fan (by which i mean i love shakespeare's play, not that i'm about to get a poisoned rapier and go to town). furthermore, i LOVE ophelia. and i don't think shakespeare does her any unnecessary disservice. there i said it. lisa klein's whole premise in writing this story is that she, too,
Jun 13, 2009 Kerrie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Hamlet is my favorite Shakespearean tragedy, hands down, so when I saw this I was intrigued. I enjoyed the first 3/4 of it, and hated the end. I loved hearing Ophelia's point of view on the courtship and romance, and thought it interesting some of the liberties Klein took.

What was particularly interesting to me was how big of a role the herbs and flowers took in this retelling. I supposed because I'm lazy I never took the time to look up what each of the flowers and herbs were used for that Oph
lizzie mcmanus
As a feminist and as a lover of Shakespeare, i was simultaneously vastly excited and rather apprehensive to crack open this book. Sure, i've always wanted to know what Ophelia's real story was, but to tackle a reinterpretation of what is arguably Shakespeare's greatest work is, well, ambitious. But i knew that if it were done well, this book would make its way onto my "favorites" shelf in between the Sonnets and Rosencrantz & Guildernstern Are Dead by Tom Stoppard.

It definitely made its way
Miss Price
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I won't rehash my love of all things Shakespeare and the particular love i have for his play Hamlet here (although my reading of the particular young adult novel Ophelia by Lisa Klein did prompt a viewing of all six of my various Hamlet dvds for their sundry interpretations~it is always better to view performances than just to read over the text and i felt it all needed slight refreshing so i pulled i started by rereading the text itself then decided to pull out all five of my Hamlet dvds and wa ...more
Oct 23, 2010 Kay-c rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
IF you are familiar with the original version which is written by Shakespeare and it's original Title is "HAMLET" then i recommend you this book.

The original were all about vengeance and This book is about lies and betrayal and also vengeance. IF the original were all about hamlet who is the original protagonist then this book is the opposite. It foretell about Hamlet's Lover who became his wife in this story Ophelia. And of course it goes to the real flow of the story but the only different is
Camille Torres-kelly
I read this book about two years ago. It was before I had read the actual "Hamlet". I'd heard snippets of the play, but not the entire summary. This novel made an impact on how I read the play. For the next couple of years since I read this book, I've kind of viewed Ophelia as intelligent and trying to hold her ground in her topsy-turvy world rather than as insane and overly vulnerable. This novel is really worth cracking open and reading.
Feb 23, 2008 Susan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I learned that I definitely have a different idea of what Ophelia's fate should have been! Very well written but not enough interaction between Hamlet and Ophelia to justify the deep love the author wanted us to believe that they had for one another. The research the author did on herbs and medicine during that era was quite extensive and interesting.
May 06, 2014 Thalia rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of "Hamlet" and Its Retellings
Shelves: e-ufh, nadammehkc
Read the review on my blog:
Ophelia is one of those books that flips a classic, in this case Hamlet, and shows someone else's point of view, in this case... well, obviously Ophelia. It's... an interesting take? At least? It sounds to me kinda like Klein read those scholarly ideas that Ophelia was pregnant when she died and ran with them. But I am ahead of myself.

Ophelia begins with our titular heroine remembering her childhood as a motherless girl tagging along with the boys while her father schemes to get ahead. Eventuall
Jan 26, 2014 Samantha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I chanced upon this book in the library a few years ago. And I'm glad I picked it up because, surprisingly, this is the book that inspired me to read classic literature, of which I am now a huge fan.

This is a YA work, but it's the one of the best titles I've ever read. It is a retelling of the play "Hamlet" by Shakespeare. I used to hate Shakespeare, but this story was so intriguing that I had to go back to the original and read it again. Because of Ophelia, I saw the greatness of Shakespeare fr
This book is essentially Shakespeare's Hamlet told from Ophelia's point of view. The author took a lot of creative liberties in her story-telling that I found to be really risky and at times obscure. I enjoyed the beginning, which told of Ophelia's childhood before going to court, and the bits of Hamlet secretly courting her. But then (view spoiler) ...more
When I first read the summary I was impatient to read this. Why? I have no clue. I've never read Hamlet before, and I only knew the basic outline of the story: Hamlet is a prince, his father is killed. Mom remarries guy who kills him, Hamlet see ghost of dad, ghost tells him to get revenge, hamlet goes crazy with revenge. But something about this book made me rush out to barns and noble and buy it.

I honestly hate this book for about 70% of it. It wasn't that I couldn't get into it, but it was t
Jan 12, 2011 Amy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had such mixed feelings about this book. I loved it and hated it at the same time.
Like the author, I was never satisfied with the character Ophelia and the place she has in literature. I always thought that there was more to her than Shakespeare lets on. She always seemed such a mystery to me. In that sense, I loved how Lisa Klein took the frame of Shakespeare's play and filled in the details of Ophelia. I thought that the story she made for Ophelia was believable and it fit very well with th
Apr 10, 2012 kelley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, 2012, fiction
This fictionalized version of Shakespeare's Hamlet is told from the point of view of Ophelia. The story begins when she is a young motherless girl growing up rather wildly as a companion to her brother Laertes. Her father Polonius encourages her to read and he discusses politics with her so Ophelia has a quick and bright mind. She is a delightful child and I really enjoyed the author's ability to conjure up a life for a character that really doesn't get much time on the stage in the original pla ...more
May 28, 2009 Angie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Klein took on a pretty steep challenge in re-writing what many would consider to be the greatest piece of literature in the English language, and I'm not sure the results are satisfactory. Yes, the story of Hamlet has been retold many times from Strange Brew to The Lion King to The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, but it is another thing to go right into the original and try to retell it from another point of view. I'll tell you right now, this is no Rozencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. That compariso ...more
Oct 07, 2009 Andrea rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Amber Randol
Traditional Literature

Ophelia starts out with her father and brother Laertes as a girl around age eight when they move to Elsinore Castle. She was a tomboy when she was younger and always wanted to play with her brother and Prince Hamlet. When she gets older, she becomes a lady in waiting to Queen Gertrude and Hamlet starts to notice her. Soon they are meeting in secret and elope, planning to tell everyone about it when his father is murdered. Hamlet becomes obsessed with finding the
Seriously wanted to hit Hamlet & Ophelia over the head.
Follows original plot well with additional twist at end.
Not really sure I liked Ophelia very much

I have to start by telling you that I absolutely hate the story of Hamlet, hate with a capital H. Want to know why? Everyone dies, there are no redeeming qualities at all *sigh*. I had high hopes that this book would change my mind. Unfortunately, it didn’t for the most part I wanted to hit Hamlet and Ophelia over the head. I think that the f
Feb 22, 2013 Zen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
In this Ophelia-centric retelling of Hamlet, our heroine fakes madness and death, matches wits with the prince, and takes the reins of her story into her own hands. This is Ophelia's tale now — Hamlet's just playing a role in it.

When Ophelia first lays eyes on Prince Hamlet, she's a scrappy little tomboy in her brother Laertes' shadow. Years later, she's a lady-in-waiting who feels trapped by the conventions of Elsinore — specifically the ones that require her and Hamlet to keep their love a sec
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“What is a man's life but a prelude to his death? And what is death but a long sleep, a most welcome forgetfulness.” 36 likes
“Alone in my chamber, I fairly trembled with excitement. How could it be that I, who had never been kissed before, had kissed the Prince of Denmark himself, not once but many times? Did he really speak to me of love? It was beyond belief that I, humble Ophelia, should be wooed by Prince Hamlet. Surely I had imagined it.” 15 likes
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