This week it’s time to take a second look at classics you always thought were too boring to be interested in. Any one of these classic retellings on this list would make a compelling selection for your next listen. Also no offense to Shakespeare or Emily Bronte or any other classically respected author, but listening to Romeo and Juliet through a lens of a survivalist family feud sounds way more interesting than reading poems about 2 teens who kill themselves after they get their wires crossed. Just saying.
Starry Eyes – Jean Bennett
If trying to read Romeo and Juliet in actual Shakespeare makes your eyes water, consider listening to this light, fun version that features a diverse cast of players and a *checks notes* survivalist motif?
When our two star-crossed enemies to lovers finally meet again after a bitter family feud, they find themselves not glamping amid the stars, but fighting to survive under them. Sizzling quips and teenage hormones abound and don’t worry, this one ends a lot better than the OG.
Jane Steele – Lyndsay Faye
Have you too found yourself personally victimized by Jane Eyre? Don’t get us wrong, it’s a classic for a reason, but we can’t help but notice that a large central theme of the book is forgiveness. Yuck.
If you were chomping at the bit for some vengeance on behalf of Jane, then this version will be much more to your liking. Here, Jane ends up on top and has the body count to prove it. You’ll root for this murderous version of one of literature’s most beloved leading ladies, and don’t worry because the whole “will they/won’t they” dynamic with a certain curmudgeon/household master is still in play.
Salsbury Hill – Susan M. Wyler
The gothic elements and broody love triangles of Wuthering Heights get the rom-com treatment in this retelling, and we’re here for it. Listen along as Eleanor treks to an estate willed to her by a dead aunt, and discovers that perhaps her life stateside isn’t quite what she wants after all.
Could be the hunky, tacit, and overall angsty man on the moors who is conveniently the caretaker of said home/ probably the actual love of her life instead of her milk toast BF back home…that’ll do it.
The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein – Kiersten White
Here we get essentially the story of Frankenstein but through the eyes of Elizabeth- orphan turned ward and eventually the intended of Victor Frankenstein. Taken in by the Frankenstein family as a child, Elizabeth doesn’t sit idly by as she does in the original. Here we meet a fierce and calculating heroine, who does what it takes to survive, thrive, and reveal that perhaps the true horror is existing as a woman in the 18th century.
The theme of what truly makes a monster is ever-present, and despite this being one of the most similar retellings we’ve encountered, the perspective only helps to make the story feel deeper, bigger, and eerier than its parent tale.
Thanks for reading! All these audiobooks and more are available now on AudiobookSTORE.com! We hope you find them a tad more entertaining than their original counterparts. And make sure to check out our FlexPass Membership for the ultimate roster of podcasts, savings on audiobooks, and more!