Title: Romeow and Juliet (Classic Tails #3)
Author: William Shakespeare & Eliza Garrett
Illustrator: Bob Venables
Publisher: Wildfire
Genre: Classic, Short Story, Picture book
Book format: Hardback
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Description:  The greatest works of literature, as told by the finest breeds.
In fair Purrona, two furry families are at war.  But when Romeow, the son of Lord Montamew, sneaks into a Cattulet ball, he falls in love with the beautiful Juliet – the daughter of his father’s sworn enemy.
So begins the tale of two star-crossed kitties, who defy this feline feud for the chance to live – but ultimately die – together…

*Free copy provided by publisher for review…

Review:  This is such a beautiful and wonderful book to own and perfect for anyone, no matter if you’ve read Shakespeare or not! Romeow and Juliet is a much shorter version of the classic play by Shakespeare, with a great feline twist. Although many know the original play of Romeo and Juliet, for those that don’t the basic story is a tragedy. There is a family feud between their two families, the Montagues and the Capulets but by chance Romeo and Juliet meet and fall in love. However their love is doomed from the start.

Romeow and Juliet book page image one
©The Strawberry Post

This book gives a great spin on the original story. Although the basic story is exactly the same, and some of Shakespeare’s original words are used, the whole book is written in a more modern language which is good for people who haven’t read Shakespeare before, or are reluctant to because of the old language. Being a feline tale though, the book is filled with references to cat things, such as the family names are Montamew and Cattulet (rather than Montague and Capulet), Mercutio is now Mewcattio and there are phrases like ‘Juliet was in her basket’ to name some of the many, many cat themed references which make this book so funny.

The illustrations are so amazing that I can’t help but constantly look back at this book as they are so detailed and so beautiful. The pictures look very old fashioned and appear on every double page, text is on the left with a lovely illustration on the right. The paper used is glossy and thick which makes the pictures look better than they would on matt paper. The way this book looks along with the fact it is a small hardback (which has a matt finish to it) and is around A6 in size really reminds me of Ladybird books I had as a child.

Every picture features an old fashioned scene but rather than images of people they are cats which look like people, human-like bodies but otherwise they are cats. The pictures don’t just look old fashioned though, they look like actual old paintings, with the detail you’d expect in old paintings like a very clever cracked oil paint effect on all the pages, it’s subtle but also gives each picture a really old fashioned look making it all the more special. Although some people may find the anthropomorphic images strange (cats with human bodies) I love it and think many animal lovers would too!

Romeow and Juliet book page image two
©The Strawberry Post

I have really enjoyed this book and can’t recommend it enough to anyone who has a love of cats and interest in knowing the Shakespeare play. I think the book would be loved by anyone who likes cats or animals as well as people who are fans of reading and Shakespeare, but I also think those who have never read any Shakespeare or don’t know the original story of Romeo and Juliet could enjoy this as a sort of introduction to Shakespeare/classics book. Although some of the text is original Shakespeare which can make some lines harder to understand for some people, the images and the rest of the story make this an easy read and I think this would be a great book to even show to younger ages to get them interested in this classic.

What do you think of this book?  Would you like to see more of Shakespeare’s plays given the feline or animal twist?  Let me know what you think in the comments below 🙂