anonymous asked:

Hi, I just turned 16 and was wondering what some life-changing books were for you when you were younger, especially with female protagonists? Or just some books you really love:)

You know, I like to think that I will forever be 16, and that is why I bully my friends into buying 16 candles every damn year, and why I spend so much money on face scrubs.

But yes! Absolutely, let’s do this. Around your age, here are the books that really packed a punch—and that made me think about gender roles, actually, although sometimes by contra-examples rather than through strong protagonists.

Dangerous Liaisons, Choderlos de Laclos
Notre-Dame de Paris, Victor Hugo
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë
Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë
Madame Bovary, Gustave Flaubert
Antigone, Jean Anouilh
Andromache, Jean Racine
Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare

This is it for the female protagonists, I’m afraid I fed on classic literature and boys are everywhere. Here goes for a few more that really changed me back then.

The Stranger, Albert Camus
The Odyssey, Homer
Endgame, Samuel Beckett
Bel-Ami, Guy de Maupassant
The Book of My Mother, Albert Cohen
Brave New World, Aldous Huxley
Hamlet, William Shakespeare

Sorry, I was really very much a nerd into classics.

romantic shakespeare quotes to seduce your lover
  • “I love you with so much of my heart that none is left to protest”
  • “Of the very instant that I saw you, did my heart fly at your service”
  • “My bounty is as boundless as the sea, my love as deep; the more I give to thee, the more I have, for both are infinite”
  • “I wish you all joy of the worm”
  • “Come, let’s away to prison”
  • “What, you egg?”
  • [exit, pursued by a bear]
  • Sonnet 130

oh! I have to tell you guys a great story one of my professors told me. So he has a friend who is involved in these Shakespeare outreach programs where they try to bring Shakespeare and live theatre to poor and underprivileged groups and teach them about English literature and performing arts and such. On one of their tours they stopped at a young offenders institute for women and they put on a performance of Romeo and Juliet for a group of 16-17 year old girls. It was all going really well and the girls were enjoying and laughing through the first half - because really, the first half is pretty much a comedy - but as the play went on, things started to get quiet. Real quiet. Then it got up to the suicide scene and mutterings broke out and all the girls were nudging each other and looking distressed, and as this teacher observed them, he realised - they didn’t know how the play ended. These girls had never been exposed to the story of Romeo and Juliet before, something which he thought was impossible given how ubiquitous it is in our culture. I mean, the prologue even gives the ending away, but of course it doesn’t specify exactly how the whole “take their life” thing goes down, so these poor girls had no idea what to expect and were sitting there clinging to hope that Romeo would maybe sit down for a damn minute instead of murdering Paris and chugging poison - but BAM he died and they all cried out - and then Juliet WOKE UP and they SCREAMED and by the end of the play they were so upset that a brawl nearly broke out, and that’s the story of how Shakespeare nearly started a riot at a juvenile detention centre

A Shakespearean Character Guide to Dealing with an Annoying Roommate

Macbeth: Invite him to a sleepover. Then stab him.

Hamlet: Put on a play that outlines all of your roommate’s annoying flaws. Then stab him.

Romeo: Marry his cousin and try to start a new, peaceful relationship. When that doesn’t work, stab him.

Brutus: Petition your roommate to change for the better. Then stab him with 60 of your closest friends.

Othello: Talk to your friend about the problems you’re having with your roommate. Then strangle him.

Shylock: Make him sign a pound of flesh as collateral on your roommate agreement. Collect on it.

Cleopatra: Set a poisonous snake loose in his room.

Henry VIII: Marry him. Then cut off his head.

  1. Choose-your-own-path Shakespeare
  2. with an amazing cover by @gingerhaze
  3. with over 100 endings each illustrated by THE BEST ARTISTS WORKING TODAY
  4. with the path Shakespeare took through the book illustrated by tiny hearts
  5. with an interview at The Mary Sue talking about the creative process
  6. which you can pre-order RIGHT NOW
  7. what are you waiting for this book is gonna be off the hook and I say that as an actual cross-temporal collaborator with Shakespeare