ShakespeareFrom Mediabistro’s GalleyCat comes the intriguing news that Hogarth Press, an imprint of Random House, has commissioned a series of novelizations of Shakespeare’s plays, to be written by well-known authors.

As the article explains:

“The project will open with Anne Tyler rewriting The Taming of the Shrew and Jeanette Winterson retelling The Winter’s Tale. The program will open in 2016, marking the 400th anniversary of the great author’s passing.”

I must admit, I am intrigued. If they get through the whole cannon of plays and market these with matched cover art and decent promotion, and of course assuming the novels are good, they actually could be commissioning a really unique contribution to the literary scene.

I have mixed feelings about using modernized retellings to replace the actual, original thing; but as a supplement, I see works like these as having great value. I personally will be quite curious to read them.