'Mean Girls' Gets A Shakespearean Makeover In This New Book

Quirk Books
By Kerri Jarema

Get in losers, we're going to read Shakespeare. OK, not exactly Shakespeare, but definitely the next best thing: Much Ado About Mean Girls, Ian Doescher's Shakespearean-themed adaptation of the classic 2000's film, Mean Girls. Bustle has the exclusive cover reveal and an excerpt from the book below!

Doescher is already well known for his Star Wars Shakespeare adaptations, which Quirk Books have been publishing for the last four years. But when fans of that series reached out with other films that Doescher should adapt, a new idea was born: the Pop Shakespeare series. Much Ado About Mean Girls will be the first release in the collection, and it will hit shelves on April 23, 2019 (on The Bard's birth and death day.)

Fans of Mean Girls will already know that the film fits right in with Shakespearean dramas: there are power struggles, bitter rivalries, jealousy, betrayals, star-crossed lovers, and even one hilariously iconic reference to Julius Caesar. And now fans can treat themselves to the epic drama in a whole new way through the wit, flair, and iambic pentameter of Shakespeare himself. The story is still much the same: Cady disguises herself to infiltrate the conniving Plastics, falls for off-limits Aaron, struggles with her allegiance to newfound friends Damian and Janis, and stirs up age-old vendettas among the factions of her high school.

Check out the totally fetch cover for Much Ado About Mean Girls below, and keep reading for an exclusive excerpt from the book:


Setting: Evanston, Illinois, in the New World.

Enter chorus.

CHORUS When audiences ’round the globe appear,

Desiring stories of a woman’s fate,

Our playwright answereth the calling clear,

Preparing ample banquet for your plate.

This tale of lasses takes us unto school

With many shrewish girls and boyish asses,

Wherein they make mistakes and play the fool,

And learn hard lessons far beyond their classes.

To this fey story make I introduction —

Which shows us Cady Heron’s youthful age —

Her narrative unfolds in our production

In these few hours upon our simple stage.

I, prologue-like, your humble patience pray,

Gently to hear, kindly to judge, our play.



At the Heron residence and North Shore High School

Enter Cady Heron and her parents, Lady Heron and Sir Heron.

SIR H. Proceed, young Cady, to procure thy lunch,

And by the bite of it end woes and all.

There ne’er was situation so enflam’d

That by a meal was not made easier.

Within this bag shalt thou a dollar find,

With which thou mayst buy milk an thou dost wish.

Ask thou the bigger children where ’tis done

And, by my troth, they’ll gladly give thee aid.

LADY H. Remember’st thou the number of thy home?

Take this along; I writ it for thy sake.

I prithee, place it in thy pocket safe—

If thou dost love me, thou wilt lose it not.

[ Aside:] I’ll seem the fool I am not; Cady, strong,

Will be herself. [ To Cady:] Art thou prepar’d for


CADY E’en were I passing wise, like Seneca,

I’d not have readiness as on me falls.

SIR H. A picture ere thou leavest home I’ll take,

That we, one day, recall this moment rare.

[They take a photograph together. Exeunt Lady

and Sir Heron as Cady walks to school.]

CADY ’Tis natural, methinks, that parents cry

Upon the day their child first goeth schoolward.

Perforce this is the case most typical

When children are a meagre five years old.

I am sixteen and was, until today,

School’d by my parents in our fam’ly home.

Good gentles, like a waiting, open book,

The content of your minds is plain to read:

“A homeschool’d child is th’utmost rarity,

An ’twere a freak one would in circus find.”

Your minds, belike, imagine instances

When children taught at home are strange, indeed.

Enter child 1 above, on balcony.

CHILD 1 The spelling of the short word xylocarp —

A fruit that hath a husky, woody shell —

Is plain: X-Y-L-O-C-A-R-P.

[Exit Child 1.

CADY Or, mayhap, ye assume we hold a faith

Bizarre and dangerous in the extreme.

Enter child 2 above, on balcony.

CHILD 2 Upon the third day of creation, God

Hath made the Remington bolt-action rifle.

For “Lo,” God said, “my people must have aught

With which to fight the mighty dinosaurs

And — ages hence — the homosexuals.”

Amen say I, and all my family.

[Exit Child 2.]

CADY Think not with prejudice upon my state,

For, truly, normal is my family.

Though, in this case, ’tis normal temper’d by

The occupation of my parents two:

They both are researching zoologists,

Who spent the last twelve years on Afric plains.

My parents did know more of snakes than sneakers,

More knowledge of the zebras than of Zen,

More happy near the lions than Detroit,

More calm upon safari than in Chrome.

My life was wonderful beyond compare,

As I did grow among the pleasant beasts

And ev’ry day enjoy’d the open air.

It was a joyful, satisfying life,

Until my mother earn’d a teaching post

At old Northwestern University,

Complete with tenure — forcing our return.

Farewell said I to Afric and its plains,

And bid hello to high school and its pains.

[She is nearly struck by

a passing bus as she crosses a street.]

Alas! I must be careful, by my troth —

Ne’er was a day in Africa so fraught.

TM & © 2019 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.