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Young Adult Fiction Theater & Musicals

The Year Shakespeare Ruined My Life

by (author) Dani Jansen

Second Story Press
Initial publish date
Sep 2020
Theater & Musicals, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, LGBT
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2020
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Sep 2020
    List Price
  • Downloadable audio file

    Publish Date
    Jun 2021
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 13 to 18
  • Grade: 8 to 12
  • Reading age: 13 to 18


Alison Green, desperate Valedictorian-wannabe, agrees to produce her school’s disaster-prone production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Her second big mistake is accidentally saying yes to a date with her oldest friend, Jack, even though she’s crushing on Charlotte, the star of the play.

About the author

Dani Jansen is a teacher and writer who lives in Montreal. She should probably be embarrassed to admit that she has performed as part of her school’s Glee Club for eight years. She should probably also be ashamed to tell people that she named her cats after punctuation symbols, Ampersand and Em-Dash, in case you're curious).

Dani Jansen's profile page


  • Winner, GCLS Literary Young Adult Award

Editorial Reviews

(D)ebut novelist Jansen crafts a relatable heroine whose anxious first-person narration carries the debut, while the diverse supporting cast rounds it out. Readers will root for Alison as she learns to collaborate, manage others’ expectations, accept failure, and, ultimately, to love.

Publisher's Weekly, September 1 2020

In the words of the Bard himself, most wonderful.

Kirkus Reviews, June 2020

"Rebecca Auerbach provides near-perfect matches for the eclectic characters in this young adult audiobook.... She also provides fitting character portrayals, especially Alison's wide range of feelings as she experiences more and more stress over the school play. Teen listeners, especially theater fans, will enjoy this production."

AudioFile Review

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