Rewriting Shakespeare's finest tragedy as a bawdy farce doesn't seem the most obvious thing to do. (In a world where literary classics are being given the extreme horror-gore makeover I guess anything is possible though.)
It also doesn't seem the easiest thing to pull off - especially given the nationality of the author attempting the feat. Yes, Christopher Moore is American and he's tried to master the Carry On-esque, ultra-British art of gratuitous innuendo and outright rudeness - all in the name of making us laugh.
So how's he done? Well the answer is remarkably well. If I didn't know he wasn't a Brit there's nothing in here that would have made me suspicious. He's mastered smutty British humour perfectly. And he's also managed to turn the most intense of Shakey's output into pure rude silliness whilst still being recognisable.
The story's intact (pretty much). The King still attempts to share his kingdom amongst his three daughters if they prove their love and loyalty. His youngest, and only true, daughter still refuses to pander to his mad request (unlike her greedy sisters) and gets herself banished and the Earl of Gloucester still having his own succession issues. It's all still here. Just with a change of emphasis - a large dildo shaped change of emphasis.
Or to put it simply, it's great fun! As long as you donít mind the occasional joke about shagging!
Page updated 28 May, 2010