Title: When You Were Mine
Author: Rebecca Serle
Publisher: Simon Pulse
‘”This is life,’ he says. ‘We have to take it as it comes, because even though some things are really shitty, there’s a lot of really great stuff too.'”
“When You Were Mine” is a retelling of Shakespeare’s (The Tragedy of) Romeo and Juliet; told from Rosaline’s point of view. Rosaline is the girl Romeo “loved” (don’t really know the details of the play so excuse me if I use wrong words) before he met Juliet and is also the main character of this novel.
I actually really liked the book, I think the plot was interesting and it was nice to read from ‘Rosaline’s point of view (even thought she wasn’t the same Rosaline). The fact that the author tried to show the “other” side, or maybe the consequence of the relationship made me very happy because I’m a hopeless romantic and I feel incredibly bad if I see someone after a break up, crying or frowning and the book made me feel a little bit relieved because you could see that Rosaline had two very close friends who didn’t leave her side.
I wasn’t expecting Rob -the Romeo of our story- to be that dumb though. I wasn’t expecting the thing with Len either but while I was fine with Len and Rosie, I had a hard time believing that Rob would be stupid enough to do that thing he did *trying so hard not to give spoilers but I think you can guess what he did* But Len and Rosie -especially Len- were so cute that I felt the need to thank Rob for his actions.
“‘But it’s not night yet,’ I say. ‘The stars aren’t out.’
‘Of course they are.’ He smiles and pulls me closer. ‘Just because you can’t see things sometimes doesn’t mean they’re not there.'”
I need to say that I was also not expecting that ending. I swear I forgot it was a retelling for a moment and after I read that paragraph, I literally had to go back to the start of the paragraph and read it again multiple times to see if I read it correct. I was not expecting that.
Even though I liked the book, I still took 0.5 points because of two characters: Charlie and Olivia, Rosaline’s two best friends. They sometimes acted like *pardon my French* bitches who don’t give a damn about their close ones. I didn’t like how they ignored Rosie completely sometimes or made her feel like crap. I mean yes, I get that you are rich and/or very pretty but you just can’t do that to one of your closest friends.
One thing I need to add: When I looked at the Goodreads reviews of this book, I saw many negative comments on how it had ‘sexism’ and ‘slut-shaming’ and after reading those reviews/comments, I felt really bad about liking this book because I sexism is not something I can stand yet I didn’t see any of those in the book. I don’t know what to do right now and I see many posts on Tumblr about how you shouldn’t let other people’s definitions of “good books” affect you but I don’t want to look like I support sexism or it doesn’t bother me… Woopsie 😀