R + J Sucks (The Complete Saga): A Paranormal Shakespeare Retelling by Ann Hunter

R+J Sucks [The Complete Saga]: A Paranormal Shakespeare Retelling

4 Stars

Publisher: Aisling House, LLC

Date of publication: September 1st, 2017

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal

Where you can find R + J Sucks: Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

Teenagers. Romance. Vampires. 

Get all three books in one go with this complete set of R+J Sucks, and save 50% off. 

R+J v.1: When immortality is the be all, end all of Capulet family, can Juliet escape her ancestry to live happily ever after? 
A boy from the wrong side of the tracks, Romeo is forbidden to cross into Capulet territory, but how long can he resist when all that beckons him is gold and prosperity? Will he realize in time that all that wealth was amassed in blood, or will he sway to Juliet’s overpowering natural charisma? 

R+J v.2: The Capulets have plans for Juliet, a rare natural-born vampire. She must marry Paris and continue the bloodline. But how can she when she’s fallen for a human? Such a love is forbidden, and her cousin Tybalt is sure to “discourage” Romeo Montague. Unsettled by this unholy union, the Montagues are ready to defend their family, and Romeo’s soul. 

R+J v.3: With Romeo facing his entire family being hunted by the vampire Royal Guard, it’s up to him and Juliet to fight for their happiness. Fearing the downfall and disgrace of her own family, Juliet must choose love or immortality. Will the Montagues save themselves from the wrath of the Capulets? Or will Paris ensure the downfall of Romeo and his clan? 

Two households, both of great dignity, In fair Verona, where we lay our scene, from ancient grudge breaks new mutiny, and civil blood makes civil hands unclean….

My Review:

I am a huge Shakespeare fan. I have read his plays more than once. Among my favorite plays are Romeo and Juliet. Something about forbidden love that ends tragically gets me. I have watched a fantastic rendition of Romeo and Juliet. It is Romeo + Juliet, starring Clare Danes and Leonardo DiCaprio. Unfortunately, I haven’t found a written take on that play that I liked until R + J sucks.

I enjoyed reading this book. The author did a great job of keeping true to the original play while putting her own original spin on it. It never crossed me, before reading this book that Juliet could be a vampire or that Romeo could be a poor Latino boy from the wrong side of the tracks. Right away, that grabbed my attention.

Romeo made me laugh. Right from the beginning, when he was told to get lost by a girl that he had dated. He would do anything for his family. Then he met Juliet and everything spiraled out of control. He should have listened to Father Laurence and stayed away. But, no, he didn’t (typical teenage boy) and man, the fall out from that was awful.

I did like Juliet. I could understand why she left her house unchaperoned. In her way, she was rebelling against her parents and the marriage that they were forcing upon her. I think her commonsense took a leave of absence. I couldn’t believe that she would lead a human into a house full of vampires and then keep him there!! I did a facepalm with that. The fall out from her actions was as bad as Romeo’s.

The secondary characters gave depth to the story. I did like that all the secondary characters in the play was written into the story. I also liked that the parents were given first names and personalities to match their characters. Romeo’s mother lived up to her name, as did Juliet’s mother. Actually, Juliet’s mother more than lived up to her name. What a cold, calculating woman.

I do wish more insight was given into how a natural-born vampire comes into existence. The very barest of explanation was given.

These books are also serial novels. I am not a fan of those and I avoid them at all cost. But, if they are compiled into one book, then I will read them.

The end of the book was interesting. I was surprised at the end of the book. Not what I was expecting.

What I liked about R + J Sucks:

A) Great take on Romeo and Juliet

B) Relatable characters

C) Interesting end to the book.

What I disliked about R + J Sucks:

A) Juliet’s mother.

B) Little insight into what a natural-born vampire was

C) Serial novel.

I would give R + J Sucks a rating of Older Teen. There is mild violence. There is mild language. But, there are no sexual situations. I would recommend that no one under the age of 16 read this book.

There are no trigger warnings in R + J Sucks.

I would reread R + J Sucks. This is a book that I would recommend to family and friends.

I would like to thank Ann Hunter for allowing me to read and review R + J Sucks.

All opinions stated in this review of R + J Sucks are mine.

**I received a free copy of this book and volunteered to review it**

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