Shakespeare's plays not in play form
August 17, 2009 8:56 AM   Subscribe

Looking for a website that retells the plots of Shakespeare's plays. Using modern English, in short story form.

Does anybody know of websites that provide a synopsis or version in short story form? I already know that wikipedia provides a synopsis of each play, but I would LOVE to find something that does a modern retelling of his plays in story form, using modern English.

Perhaps something like this, but not so child-oriented and using more present day language.

Creative retellings are welcome.

The purpose of this is so I can familiarize myself with the plots before reading/watching the plays. Hopefully I'd like to find something that is more fun to read than a collection of dry synposes.

Thank you!
posted by thisperon to Writing & Language (9 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Not exactly what you're looking for, but a great resource is No Fear Shakespeare, done by Spark Notes. It gives you the original text side by side with a modern English "translation".
posted by witchstone at 9:15 AM on August 17, 2009

Seconding the No Fear Shakespeare series. You can get them at any Barnes and Noble. Those are a great way to experience the works. Keeping the original text in the mix keeps you from being bound by the interpretation that is an inherent part of translation. They're not any shorter than the originals, though. So this only partly meets your requirement. But you might want to consider rethinking that requirement.
posted by wheat at 9:20 AM on August 17, 2009

Response by poster: Witchstone: not exactly what I was looking for...but that is an awesome resource. Thanks, I appreciate it!
posted by thisperon at 9:20 AM on August 17, 2009

Response by poster: Wheat: I'm on a bit of a time constraint these days...perhaps when I've got more leisure time!
posted by thisperon at 9:30 AM on August 17, 2009

Best answer: You want Charles and Mary Lamb's Tales from Shakespeare.
posted by oddovid at 9:32 AM on August 17, 2009

Best answer: Shakespeare's Animated Tales are really delightful. I know I've found some in my local library system.
posted by rainbaby at 10:17 AM on August 17, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks folks! I am checking these out.
posted by thisperon at 11:07 AM on August 17, 2009

Also not exactly what you're looking for, but Shakespeare Retold are modernized - and shorter - versions of 4 of the plays. I found them a lot of fun, and was sorry there were only 4 in the series.
posted by still_wears_a_hat at 3:10 PM on August 17, 2009

thisperon: also not exactly to the point, but if your local library has The Arkangel Shakespeare, you can listen your way through the Bard's works, which are much easer to get when acted out well. I've only done one of these (i.e. Hamlet), but I have a hard time imagining a better audio version. File that one away for the future, if you're too busy for it now.
posted by wheat at 6:55 AM on August 18, 2009

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