William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, retold by Georghia Ellinas, illustrated by Jane Ray


William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, retold by Georghia Ellinas, illustrated by Jane Ray. Candlewick, 2021. 9781536217735

Rating: (1-5) (5 is an excellent or starred review) 3

Format: Hardcover

Genre: Picture book

What did you like about the book? There is trouble in fairy paradise as King Oberon seeks revenge on his wife Tatiana. As several mortal couples struggle in the enchanted forest below, King Oberon sends his advisor Puck to play matchmaker. Using potions, props, and fairy magic, everything goes awry. The three couples, in addition to fairy royalty, are all at the mercy of Puck’s mischief. This retelling of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream simplifies the story and uses detailed, vibrant, and whimsical illustrations by Jane Ray to explain the plot. Short paragraphs keep the reader engaged while providing quotes from the play, making it accessible to picture book readers.

Anything you didn’t like about it?  The action was confusing at times and difficult to follow. Considering the audience, it could have been made simpler. More correlation between text and pictures would have helped.

To whom would you recommend this book? Children with an interest in Shakespeare, drama, fantasy, or fairies. 

Who should buy this book? Elementary and public libraries 

Where would you shelve it? Picture books 

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes, if you’re looking for an early introduction to Shakespeare.

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City, and State: Keeva George, Marstons Mills Public Library, Marstons Mills, MA


Date of review: August 6, 2021

This entry was posted in *Book Review, *Picture Book, Drama, Fairies, Fantasy, Georghia Ellinas, Jane Ray, Plays, Theater, William Shakespeare and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.