Several years ago I read Pamela Dean's Juniper, Gentian and Rosemary, and was captivated by its mix of literary allusions, quirky characters, and mundane yet fantastic plot. The ending made my head want to explode. I read it first in January, then again in February, and was so convinced my daughter would love it--its young characters' conversations reminded me of many I'd overheard as I drove the afternoon carpool home from school--if she got down off her high horse long enough to read it, that I resorted to bribery. Money exchanged hands and she agreed to fit the book into her busy schedule.
Needless to say, she hated it. It was a totally annoying book, her conversations were nothing like those in the book, and besides, nobody read Shakespeare in middle school the way these characters did.
Except her brother did, the very next year. It certainly wasn't geared to be the intellectual experience that Gentian had had (I stumbled across the silly board game he was required to make a few months back), but it was proof that middle schoolers read Shakespeare even though she'd not been required to do so in the I.B. program.
And this is all preface to say that when I suggested late yesterday afternoon that my son do Kate's meme for his own amusement, I thought he might put down Much Ado About Nothing as his first adult book. Instead he said it was Midsummer Night's Dream.
I reminded him that the script for his elementary school production of Midsummer Night's Dream was highly watered down and should not count. He said he knew that, and wasn't. His class had read the play in small groups in sixth grade.
Why had I never heard one word about this till now?
He said he didn't think it was any big deal.