If you’ve read Alan Gratz’s Something Rotten (based on Shakespeare’s Hamlet), you’ve got to read Something Wicked (based on Macbeth). Even if you haven’t read the first book, Something Wicked is definitely worth reading, especially if you’re familiar with the story and characters in Macbeth.
Horatio Wilkes is an amateur sleuth, and when he discovers Duncan MacRae, the founder of the Scottish Highland Games, dead in his tent, he begins to investigate. At first, evidence points to Duncan’s son, Malcolm, as the murderer, but Horatio soon discovers that his friend Mac and Mac’s girlfriend Beth may be the true culprits. What drove them to this madness? And can Horatio prove they’re to blame before he or anyone else is hurt?
If you’ve read Macbeth, you may already know the answers to these questions, but you may still be surprised at how things play out in this modern retelling. For those of you who haven’t read Macbeth, Something Wicked may be just the hook you need to really get into Shakespeare’s Scottish play.
As I said, I think Alan Gratz’s Something Wicked is a great hook to get readers interested in Macbeth. It involves teen characters and a modern setting and has a ton of pop culture references, humor, and sarcasm. If you want more Macbeth, you might also read Caroline B. Cooney’s Enter Three Witches, a story of Macbeth from a scullery maid’s point of view. Both books are great introductions or companions to this literary classic.