This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my links, at no extra cost to you. Please read full disclosure for more information.When You Were Mine Published by Simon Pulse on May 1, 2012
(Last Updated On: November 1, 2021)
In this intensely romantic, modern recounting of the greatest love story ever told, Romeo’s original intended—Juliet’s cousin Rosaline—tells her side of the tale.
What’s in a name, Shakespeare? I’ll tell you: Everything. Rosaline knows that she and Rob are destined to be together. Rose has been waiting for years for Rob to kiss her—and when he finally does, it’s perfect. But then Juliet moves back to town. Juliet, who used to be Rose’s best friend. Juliet, who now inexplicably hates her. Juliet, who is gorgeous, vindictive, and a little bit crazy...and who has set her sights on Rob. He doesn’t even stand a chance. Rose is devastated over losing Rob to Juliet. This is not how the story was supposed to go. And when rumors start swirling about Juliet’s instability, her neediness, and her threats of suicide, Rose starts to fear not only for Rob’s heart, but also for his life. Because Shakespeare may have gotten the story wrong, but we all still know how it ends….
After reading Just One Day and Just One Year by Gayle Forman, I immediately wanted to read something else that had Shakespeare in it, so I picked up this book. I’d had it on my shelf for a few years because I’d picked it up at Books-A-Million while I was on vacation. I’m glad that I finally picked it up!
This story is about Rosaline, who’s best friends with Rob (who is Romeo). They’ve been really close friends forever, though they never thought of taking it to the next level because they’d been friends for so long and that’d just be strange and too different from what they’re used to. Though as they’ve gotten older, they’ve sorta fallen for each other.
After they finally kiss and become classified as a couple among their peers and between themselves, Rosaline’s crazy and insane cousin, Juliet, comes back to town. She left town a long time ago because of a scandal between Rosaline’s family and her own. Once she comes back, she doesn’t recognize Rob but she definitely thinks he’s incredibly cute, so naturally, she falls for him. Being the crazy rude person that she is, she ends up getting him to bring her to a dance at the school even though he’s already supposed to be going with Rosaline, though they had agreed to meet up at the dance. He claimed that he was just doing Juliet a favor. Some favor that is.
Anyways, after some time, Rob breaks up with Rosaline and dates Juliet. I absolutely hated Juliet. SHE’S INSANE! She’s a psychopath and I don’t know why she’s even allowed to go to a public school honestly. She had always been crazy-the memories that Rosaline has proves just that. I really loved Rob and Rosaline together and was heartbroken when he broke up with her, even though I expected just that since it is a Romeo and Juliet retelling.
On the other hand, there was Len, who was always so sweet to Rosaline even though she and her friends don’t really like him much and try to steer clear of him. I was definitely rooting for him a lot because at least he didn’t leave Rosaline and go and date her cousin, Juliet. Rob was so attached to Juliet that it seemed unhealthy. I definitely enjoyed this read and look forward to reading more Romeo and Juliet retellings in the future!
“Sometimes… the hardest part about letting someone go is realizing that you were never meant to have them.”
“They died together; they’ll always be remembered together. It’s decided, once and for all. He was hers.”
“That’s the thing about freewill: Every decision we make is a choice against something as much as it is for something else.”
“This is life. 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.”
“Those are the things that define us. They way we love the people around us, and the choices we make to show it. That’s what makes us who we are.”
Have you read this novel? I’d love to hear your thoughts!