Today I have not one, but two lovely authors speaking here at Uniquely Moi Books. I am pleased to bring you, Kim Askew and Amy Helmes.
Kim Askew and Amy Helmes are the authors of Tempestuous: A Modern-Day Spin on Shakespeare’s The Tempest and Exposure: A Modern-Day Spin on Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Learn more about their books by visiting Twistedlitbooks.com.
Our “Twisted Lit” series metaphorically grabs Shakespeare by his frilly ruff, stands him on his ear, gives him a good shake, and then reinterprets the resulting inspiration into clever and compelling YA reads, starting with our debut novel, Tempestuous. The following are five examples of the ways we shook up Shakespeare’s “The Tempest.”
1. Caliban: In Shakespeare’s version, he’s a knuckle-dragging Neanderthal type who actually tried to sexually assault the young heroine, Miranda. There are no would-be date rapists in our book (though that’s not to say it doesn’t include a few scoundrels). Our version of Caliban (Caleb) is certainly rough around the edges, but he’s a gazillion times sexier than the version Shakespeare put forth!
2. Our “island” is a shopping mall: Sand, surf, sun — yeah, yeah. There’s only so much that can happen on a deserted tropical island, but a mall has plenty of potential for laughs and lunacy. If you had the run of an entire retail Mecca for one night, just imagine all the fun you could have. Our characters certainly get creative when it happens to them!
3. A spontaneous rock concert and dance party: Shakespeare’s Ariel sings haunting, lilting tunes, but we always imagine she’s accompanied by snooze-worthy harp music. In our book, the cast of characters ends up staging an impromptu rock concert and an all-out rave.
4. A strong female heroine: Shakespeare’s Miranda is (mostly) obedient and demure. We’re pretty sure “obedient” isn’t in our Miranda’s lexicon, though you might find her cocky to a fault. Yes, her self-assurance can be borderline arrogant, but we’re pretty sure you’ll end up liking her in spite of her well-apportioned ego.
5. A new team sport: Harry Potter may have introduced the world to Quidditch, but we’ve got another contender for coolest improv sport of the year, involving mops, rolling janitorial buckets, and a 20-lbs. bag of ice. Who says today’s teenagers are lacking ingenuity?
If any of this intrigues you, we hope you’ll check out our books!
Kim and Amy
Recently banished, unfairly, by the school’s popular crowd, former “it girl,” Miranda Prospero, finds herself in a brave new world: holding dominion amongst a rag-tag crew of geeks and misfits where she works at the Hot-Dog Kabob in the food court of her local mall. When the worst winter storm of the season causes mall workers and last-minute shoppers to be snowed-in for the night, Miranda seizes the opportunity to get revenge against the catty clique behind her social exile. With help from her delightfully dweeby coworker, Ariel, and a sullen loner named Caleb who works at the mall’s nearby gaming and magic shop, Miranda uses charm and trickery to set things to right during this spirited take on Shakespeare’s The Tempest.
Double, double, toil and trouble. Sometimes, the quest for high school royalty can be deadly! In this emotionally-charged twist on Shakespeare’s Macbeth, a self-conscious shutterbug named Skye Kingston navigates a treacherous school year in Alaska fraught with unspoken secrets and tragic twists of fate. Along the way she encounters three strangely prophetic BFFs; one social-climbing, sociopathic cheerleader; and a heart-stopping hottie named Craig McKenzie: the man who would be Prom King. Can Skye save the boy she loves — and herself — before they get caught in the crosshairs?