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A Wounded Name

A Wounded Name - Dot Hutchison A Wounded Name is based on the story of Hamlet but told in the voice of Ophelia. Of course we all know the tragic ending to the story but Dot Hutchison gives us a new perspective and writes it so beautifully I was immediately drawn into this book. As I sit here wondering what I could possibly write that will do this book any sort of justice, I keep thinking that anything I write will pale in comparison to actually reading it.The story itself should be familiar and even if you have not read/seen Hamlet, you should be able to understand what is going on here. Told in modern time but with a private school, Elsinore Academy, as the backdrop, the story progresses as you would expect. The characters here are so well done and Hutchison made me feel all of the pain and emotions each of these characters were going through. From Ophelia’s sadness, pain and feelings of abandonment to Dane’s guilt, anger, and madness; I felt every one of these through the pages.Ophelia is the central character here and due to her being “her mother’s daughter”, her father and brother don’t trust her to care for herself and believe her to be insane. Ophelia is smart, observant, and loyal…sometimes to her own detriment but I really loved her. I also just wanted to give her a great big hug. Her father (Polonius) didn't really pay attention to her unless he wanted something and her brother (Laertes) was a big hypocrite who annoyed me throughout the entire story. When Dane leans on her after his father’s death, she feels needed and she enjoys that feeling regardless of what happens whenever she is around him.Dane…even I was caught up in his madness. It was hard to see at times where he was being real versus where he was putting on a show. I have a love hate relationship with Dane. He was such a damaged character and had so much anger. There were times where he was so protective and caring toward Ophelia but then he would turn into someone (or thing) else. He was abusive and put her in danger and she forgave him for it every single time. The line that says it all – “Yes,” he says simply. “you need someone to protect you from me.” Horatio is the steady character of the book and I thought he was very well done. He loves Ophelia and tries to care/protect her from herself as well as others. Horatio also loves Dane and knows that Dane will never love him in the same way. As I mentioned, nothing changes with the outcome of the story here and you probably know what happens. Despite the tragic ending, I loved this. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good book that has a perfect happily ever after ending but if that is what you are looking for, put this one down and back away. If you are drawn to books (like me) that have flawed and complex characters, a wonderful story and beautiful writing, this is something I would encourage you to pick up when you can. Thank you to NetGalley and Lerner Publishing Group for the ARC.This review can be found on my blog Fic Fare: